Five seats are open in November for the U.S. House of Representatives and both incumbents and challengers began filing Wednesday for the offices.
U.S. Rep. Tom Cole of Moore was the first congressman to file Wednesday. Cole, 62, was first elected to House District 4 in 2002.
House District 2 is expected to be the largest political battle this season with Rep. Dan Boren announcing last year he would not seek reelection.
Dustin Rowe, 36 of Tishomingo, filed as a Republican for the seat and Wayne Herriman, 59, of Muskogee filed as a Democrat.
Rowe, a former mayor of Tishomingo, said he is concerned with the tax code and the massive federal debts and wants to return to Constitutional values.
“As taxpayers, Americans need to be concerned with the debt our country is incurring and the amount of people who aren’t contributing,” Rowe said after he had filed for office.
Herriman, who has been in the seed industry for 30 years and owns his own company in Muskogee, said he is concerned about the direction Washington is headed.
He said they can create jobs by supplementing the natural gas industry.
“I can go to Washington with one thing in mind, making Oklahoma first in what we do,” Herriman said.
Tom Guild, a Democrat from Edmond, has filed for District 5. Republican incumbent Rep. James Lankford had not filed yet Wednesday morning.
Guild said Lankford is “wrong for Oklahoma and wrong for the United States.”
He said particularly the plan to privatize Social Security is a major issue.
“Privatizing Social Security and investing it in the stock market, or some other hair-brain scheme, would undermine an destroy one of the most successful programs the federal government has ever had,” Guild said. “Social Security is a great program and I don’t know how a one-term representative is such an expert on it.”