2002 Oklahoma gubernatorial election
Henry: 40–50% 50–60% 60–70%
Largent: 40–50% 50–60% 60–70% 70–80%
|Elections in Oklahoma|
|Attorney General elections|
|House of Representatives elections|
The 2002 Oklahoma gubernatorial election was held on November 5, 2002, and was a race for Governor of Oklahoma. Democrat Brad Henry won the election with 43 percent of the vote, beating Republican Steve Largent and conservative independent Gary Richardson.
Henry's narrow win has been attributed to Richardson and Largent's split of the conservative vote and the inclusion of a cockfighting ban on the ballot, an issue which brought cockfighting supporters from Southeastern Oklahoma, a traditional Democratic stronghold that strongly supported Henry, out to vote.
Discover more about 2002 Oklahoma gubernatorial election related topics
Though Democrats had dominated state politics for most of Oklahoma's history, the Oklahoma Republican Party had made historic gains, including five of the state's six Congressional seats at the time of the election. This made it especially hard for Henry to win with a growing Republican dominance in the state. This was most notable in the urban areas of Oklahoma City and Tulsa, both of which voted for Largent.
Three state legislators sought the Democratic Party nomination, chasing front-runner Vince Orza who had previously sought the Governor's office as a Republican, only to be defeated by Bill Price in the primary runoff. State Senator Brad Henry limped into the runoff with 28% against Orza's 44%, but opposition to the former Republican from New York coalesced behind Henry. Orza found himself again losing the runoff after winning the initial primary. Henry won the runoff with close to 19 thousand fewer votes than Orza received in the initial primary.
|Democratic||James E. Lamkin||9,069||2.59|
Runoff primary results
Steve Largent easily won the GOP nomination against token opposition.
|Republican||Andrew Marr, Jr||9,532||4.63|
|The Cook Political Report||Likely R||October 31, 2002|
|Sabato's Crystal Ball||Lean R||November 4, 2002|
|SurveyUSA||November 1–3, 2002||710 (LV)||± 3.8%||42%||38%||17%||3%|
This election was extremely close, with Henry prevailing by just 6,866 votes or 0.6%. Under Oklahoma Law, if the margin of victory is less than one percent but greater than half a percent, the losing candidate can request a recount that their campaign has to pay for. However, Largent ultimately decided against it, considering that because Henry led by 6,866 votes, the possibility of him prevailing were extremely difficult. On November 23, Largent officially conceded defeat. Two days later on November 25, Oklahoma Secretary of State Kay Dudley certified the results, declaring Henry the governor-elect.
|Democratic gain from Republican||Swing||+2.4%|
By congressional district
Henry won 2 of 5 congressional districts.
|3rd||41.05%||43.19%||15.75%||Wes Watkins (107th Congress)|
|Frank Lucas (108th Congress)|
|4th||44.28%||42.02%||13.70%||J. C. Watts (107th Congress)|
|Tom Cole (108th Congress)|
Discover more about General election related topics
Sabato's Crystal Ball
Oklahoma Secretary of State
Democratic Party (United States)
Republican Party (United States)
Gary Richardson (lawyer)
Oklahoma's 1st congressional district
Oklahoma's 2nd congressional district
Oklahoma's 3rd congressional district
107th United States Congress
Frank Lucas (Oklahoma politician)
Source: "2002 Oklahoma gubernatorial election", Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, (2023, March 7th), https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2002_Oklahoma_gubernatorial_election.
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Gary Richardson (lawyer)
Oklahoma Republican Party
2002 Oklahoma's 1st congressional district special election
2014 Oklahoma elections
2018 Oklahoma gubernatorial election
2022 United States House of Representatives elections in Oklahoma
2022 Oklahoma House of Representatives election
- ^ a b Averill, David, "Eyeing another campaign: Richardson had impact on 2002 governor's race", Tulsa World, March 22, 2009.
- ^ "Henry upsets Steve Largent in governor's race", AP at USA Today, November 5, 2002.
- ^ John M. Broder, "The 2002 Elections: Governors; Bright Spots, Amid Dim Ones, for Democrats", The New York Times, November 7, 2009.
- ^ Gaddie, Ronald Keith, "Oklahoma Republican Party Archived 2011-09-03 at the Wayback Machine", Encyclopedia of Oklahoma History and Culture Archived May 31, 2010, at the Wayback Machine (accessed May 31, 2010).
- ^ "An Editorial: Orza is the Worst". The Oklahoman. September 9, 1990.
- ^ a b c "Primary Election August 27, 2002 Summary Results" (PDF). Oklahoma State Election Board.
- ^ "1990 Results" (PDF). Oklahoma State Election Board. p. C-4.
- ^ "The primary runoff alternative that could have changed Oklahoma elections | by Chris Powell | Medium". 20 July 2019.
- ^ "Runoff Primary Election September 17, 2002 Summary Results" (PDF). Oklahoma State Election Board.
- ^ Greiner, John; Hinton, Mick (August 28, 2002). "Largent easily wins GOP nod Orza, Henry divide Democrats". The Oklahoman.
- ^ "Governor Updated October 31, 2002 | The Cook Political Report". The Cook Political Report. October 31, 2002. Archived from the original on December 8, 2002. Retrieved September 18, 2018.
- ^ "Governors Races". www.centerforpolitics.org. November 4, 2002. Archived from the original on December 12, 2002. Retrieved September 18, 2018.
- ^ "Twitter".
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