ADA — All the long hours on the campaign trail for the District 25 state representative seat are almost history for Republican Todd Thomsen and Democrat Darrell Nemecek. Both candidates will be able to take a break after Tuesday’s general election.
The seat is open because state Rep. Bob Plunk, D-Ada, can’t seek re-election because of term limits. Plunk has served for 12 years. A small portion of Pontotoc County is in District 20 where state Rep. Paul Roan, D-Tishomingo, is going up against Coalgate Republican Johnny Sandmann. Also, a small portion of the county is in District 22 where state Rep. Wes Hilliard, D-Sulphur, didn’t draw an opponent and was re-elected to a new two-year term.
The only other local race pits incumbent Associate District Judge Martha Kilgore against Ada attorney Rob Neal.
Those who didn’t receive opponents and were re-elected include District 1 County Commissioner Gary Starns, District 3 County Commissioner Winford Wood, County Treasurer Glenda Gonderman, Court Clerk Ernestine Eubank and County Assessor Sherri Todd.
Voters will also decide Tuesday if Gov. Brad Henry or Republican challenger Ernest Istook will guide Oklahoma for the next four years and several other statewide races.
Thomsen said his first venture into politics was a very rewarding experience.
“To participate in the political process as a candidate has been one of the most humbling and challenging things I’ve ever done,” Thomsen said. “Early on in the process you realize that it’s so much bigger than you and you’re going to need a lot of help. I want to thank all of my family, friends and supporters that have invested time, money, sweat and prayers into my campaign. I also want to encourage everybody to participate in the political process this Tuesday by going to the polls, casting your simple but powerful vote.”
Nemecek was upbeat about the process.
“Oklahoma has a great governor in Brad Henry and as your state representative I will work with Gov. Henry to expand opportunity for all of us by strengthening our local schools, making health care more affordable and protecting the jobs in our communities,” Nemecek said.
“I want to work to raise the minimum wage so hard-working Oklahomans won’t have to work several jobs to make ends meet. ... The most important thing I would do is listen to what the people in the district have to say. ...”. what are their concerns,” he said. “I want to be a voice for them. I will be a full-time legislator for the good people of District 25. I have talked to great people in the district while campaigning and I would sincerely appreciate your vote on Nov. 7 If people need ride to the poles on Tuesday, phone (580) 272-0396 and I will see to it that they're afforded a ride to the poles.”
Both candidates said they appreciated the positive campaign that focused on issues.