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OKC district elects state's first gay legislator
|Last Edited||Scott³ Jul 26, 2006 04:39pm|
|News Date||Wednesday, July 26, 2006 10:00:00 PM UTC0:0|
|Description||Tulsa World article. |
"For the first time in state history, an openly gay candidate is poised to become a member of the Oklahoma Legislature.
Democrat Al McAffrey won a three-candidate primary race Tuesday with 51 percent of the vote, avoiding a runoff in the House District 88 seat in the heart of Oklahoma City. No Republicans filed for the seat.
McAffrey, a longtime Oklahoma City funeral director and a Navy veteran, said he didn't hide his sexual orientation, but didn't make it the focus of his campaign.
"I ran as a Democratic candidate in District 88, and I happen to be gay," McAffrey said. "Health care, senior care, education, those are the things that really matter to the people.
"The people in Oklahoma want the government out of their social lives, and let's take care of things that matter to Oklahomans."
The District 88 seat was held by longtime state Rep. Debbie Blackburn, who's being forced out of office because of term limits.
McAffrey said he doesn't predict any problems working with conservative colleagues in the House.
"Yes, we're a conservative state and we have conservative issues, but as a father and a grandfather, I have some conservative
issues as well," said McAffrey, who has three daughters and four grandchildren. "I've talked to several Democratic members, and I believe I can have a working relationship with every one of them. I believe they are very open about working with me."
McAffrey received some support from the Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund, a Washington, D.C.-based group that supports openly gay candidates and state officials. "
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