Attorney General Drew Edmondson is sounding more like a gubernaorial candidate now that U.S. Rep. Dan Boren has announced he won’t be running for governor two years from now.
“Dan Boren would have been a formidable candidate and would make an excellent governor,” said Edmondson, who’s up for re-election in 2010.
“I’m pleased that he is continuing his valuable service in Congress,” Edmondson said.
Boren is the only Democrat among Oklahoma’s seven-member delegation (five House members and two senators) and “his influence is going to be dramatic” in the Democratic-controlled House of Representatives, Edmondson said.
Edmondson said he won’t make a decision until the Illinois River case is resolved. He’s sued poultry companies over alleged poultry litter pollution of the river in eastern Oklahoma. A trial is set for September.
In his fourth term, Edmondson said he’s looking at the gubernatorial race seriously and gauging the level of support “which translates into fundraising.”
Edmondson, elected attorney general in 1994, has nearly $225,000 in his 2010 re-election committee fund; that money could be transferred to a campaign for governor.
Boren, D-Muskogee, who easily won a third term in the House in Tuesday’s elections, said Wednesday he was not running for governor in 2010 to cut off speculation that, he said, would distract him and potential candidates.
Other Democratic gubernatorial candidates are Lt. Gov. Jari Askins and state Treasurer Scott Meacham. Likely GOP contenders are U.S. Reps. Mary Fallin of Oklahoma City and Tom Cole of Moore.
All have said they plan to announce a decision next year.
- Michael McNutt, Capitol Bureau