OKLAHOMA RETIRED EDUCATORS ASSOCIATION FUND
Candidates Recommended in Primary Election
June 15, 2016
The OREA Fund Committee, the voluntary political action wing of the Oklahoma Retired Educators Association, announced today support for 22 legislative incumbents seeking re-election to the Oklahoma House of Representatives or Senate during the 2016 election cycle.
Political party primary elections will take place on Tuesday, June 28, with runoff elections, where needed, in August and general elections in November.
Two Senate candidates are recommended to OREA members in primary elections.
Democrat Kevin Matthews gains the OREA Fund nod in Tulsa’s Senate District 11 against a fellow Democrat. Members of the OREA committee cite Matthews’ support on key legislative issues such as funding for the Teachers’ Retirement System and opposition to efforts in the Senate to restructure the defined benefit plan into a defined contribution plan. In the fall of 2015, Matthews sponsored a legislative interim study on the DB/DC issue, siding with experts who gave testimony in favor of preserving the TRS DB plan.
Republican Ron Sharp, a long-time Shawnee teacher, is recommended to OREA members in Senate District 17 for opposing fellow lawmakers known for their desire to divert earmarked revenues from the system to other functions of government. He also receives high marks for general support of TRS and his willingness to engage in open conversation about protection of the retirement system.
For similar reasons, the committee recommends 20 House incumbents for re-election to their seats during the 2016 election cycle. In addition to senators Matthews and Sharp, all have received OREA Fund financial contributions to their campaigns ranging from $500 to $800.
Most of the House incumbents are seen as highly approachable by OREA members and professional lobbyists. Generally speaking, all are known to support preservation of the TRS defined benefit plan and protection of all current sources of TRS earmarked revenues. Many also have opposed income tax cuts that undermine essential services to the most vulnerable Oklahoma citizens, and a select few were able to demonstrate their support for maintaining affordable health insurance premiums for under age 65 retired educators by their votes in legislative committee.
The following candidates are recommended by the OREA Fund Committee for re-election to the House and Senate seats they now hold:
SD 11 – Kevin Matthews (D)
SD 17 – Ron Sharp (R)
House of Representatives
HD 1 – Johnny Tadlock (D)
HD 6 – Chuck Hoskin (D)
HD 15 – Ed Cannaday (D)
HD 17 – Brian Renegar (D)
HD 18 – Donnie Condit (D)
HD 22 – Charles McCall (R)
HD 25 – Todd Thomsen (R)
HD 32 – Kevin Wallace (R)
HD 43 – John Paul Jordan (R)
HD 45 – Claudia Griffith (D)
HD 46 – Scott Martin (R)
HD 49 – Tommy C. Hardin (R)
HD 56 – David Perryman (D)
HD 66 – Jadine Nollan (R)
HD 69 – Chuck Strohm (R)
HD 71 – Katie Henke (R)
HD 83 – Randy McDaniel (R)
HD 85 – Cyndi Munson (D)
HD 94 – Scott Inman (D)
HD 99 – George Young (D)
All campaign contributions to recommended candidates come from the voluntary contributions of OREA members to the OREA Fund. No OREA dues money is used for candidate campaign assistance.
Candidates are assessed by the level of their commitment to the economic and professional interests of retired educators, particularly as those interests are stated in the adopted legislative goals of the association. Political party membership is not among the criteria used in candidate assessment.
OREA respects the right of members to vote for candidates of their own choosing. Thus, candidates are not endorsed, but instead are recommended for member consideration.
OREA encourages all members to exercise their right to vote in all elections. The 2016 political party primary election will occur on Tuesday, June 28. See you at the polls!