Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
February 10, 2016

Lankford Seeks Senate as Cole Declines in Oklahoma

Lankford is reportedly running for Senate. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Updated 9:57 p.m. | Rep. James Lankford, R-Okla., intends to run for GOP Sen. Tom Coburn’s seat and could make a formal announcement as early as Monday, according to NewsOK.

Meanwhile, six-term Republican Rep. Tom Cole announced Sunday that he would pass on running for the seat.

“I am very flattered to be among those mentioned, as any Oklahoma Republican would be honored to succeed someone as distinguished as Tom Coburn,” Cole said in a news release. “After considerable thought, however, I have decided not to run for the U.S. Senate in 2014.”

Cole cited his seniority, role as a Republican deputy whip and committee assignments as his reasons for not running. These roles “make me much more valuable to Oklahoma and the Fourth District in the House than I could be as a freshman U.S. Senator,” he said.

Coburn, who is battling cancer, announced last week that he will exit the Senate two years before the end of his second term. The special election will take place concurrent with the 2014 midterm elections, with a primary on June 24.

NewsOK also noted two Republicans, Oklahoma Corporation Commissioner Patrice Douglas and state Sen. Clark Jolley, are expected to run in an open-seat race to replace Lankford in the 5th District. Both Republicans were mentioned in last week’s edition of Roll Call’s “Farm Team” series, which focused on Sooner State political up-and-comers.

Lankford declined to comment in the NewsOK report.

Prior to the report, Lankford was widely seen on Capitol Hill as a consequential force within the GOP conference and was one of Roll Call’s “10 Republicans Who Could Be Speaker” in 2013.

Daniel Newhauser contributed to this report.

  • One Voice

    Let’s say NO to Lankford. The fact that Mr. Lankford purchased 3 committee seats as soon as he got sworn in gives me more than one concern about this newest addition to the establishment Republican flock. He has been described as someone who ” has mastered the art of answering questions in a way that’s both informative and evasive”.
    No Thank You.
    Pruitt and Bridenstine have both shown enough brains and courage to be the next Senator from Oklahoma.

  • One Thirsty Bear

    Our trust in liberty rests on the understanding that it will, in the long run, unleash much more potential for good than for evil.

  • The truth is that …

    Although we rely upon the geniuses among us to create the gadgets, gizmos, and gasoline we depend upon, genius becomes bottled up and useless when centralized restrictions limit liberty.

  • terjeanderson

    Yet without those gadgets and gizmos, how would you and all your sock-puppets be able to spam the discussion boards with all your inane irrelevant pseudo-libertarian bromidic homilies?

  • The truth is that …

    Each of my points is fair and reasonable. You’re not actually disputing any of them.

    Is there a particular point I’ve made that you take issue with?

  • terjeanderson

    Your posts are completely irrelevant to the articles they are posted on – it has nothing to do with the Oklahoma Senate race.

    Nothing but spam.

  • Ryan Darby

    And this has nothing to do with the Oklahoma Senate race.

  • lowCal90

    The most common illusions conjured up to justify today’s collectivist central planning and coercion include “social justice”, “fair” income distribution, and stopping “global warming”.

  • terjeanderson

    Another sock puppet spamming pseudo-libertarian drivel that has nothing whatsoever to do with the story about the Oklahoma Senate race.

    Do you get paid for posting this crap?

  • Wise words …

    We should remember that certain notions, such as socialism’s fatal theory of society by design, are little more than the odd notions of crazed men that have been continuously recycled within the ivory towers of detached academics.

  • One Voice

    Deleted question will still get my answer:

    Try testing the message information instead of knee jerk attacking the messenger. Check out the info. 2+2? I came up with four and tried to share my concerns on MY Rep not becoming OUR Senator. I’m busy, I will not debate with a disrespectful human that tells me to shut my pie hole, here’s the info I based my concerns on. I will remember that God loves you every bit as much as he loves me, and wish you, “Good day Sir.”

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