The people who will make an impact on national energy policies affecting Oklahoma businesses aren’t just the state’s corporation commissioners, one of whom, chairman Todd Hiett, is up for reelection. But the state’s U.S. Senators and Representatives play an important role too.
At the end of the three-day filing period for candidates, the one U.S. senator up for reelection and the five U.S. representatives found themselves with opponents.
Rep. Markwayne Mullin, who sits on the House Energy and Commerce Committee is a Republican and drew two primary challengers. They are Rhonda Hopkins and State Sen. Joseph Silk of Broken Bow.
Hopkins is a two-time GOP candidate for state house district 86 who lost both times, one in 2016 and again in 2018.
Congressman Mullin has been a member of the Energy and Commerce Committee since 2014. It is the oldest standing legislative committee in the U.S. House of Representatives and has broad jurisdiction over issues including health care, energy, telecommunications, and commerce. It oversees numerous federal entities, such as the Department of Health and Human Services, the Department of Energy, the Department of Commerce, the Environmental Protection Agency and the Federal Communications Commission.
Rep. Kevin Hern, a Republican from Tulsa will not face a primary opponent but will deal with Democrats Kojo Asamoa-Caesar and Mark Keeter and independent Evelynn Rogers in the general election.
Hern sits on the House Committee on Natural Resources, the Committee on Small Business and the Committee on the Budget.
The Committee on Natural Resources considers legislation about American energy production, mineral lands and mining, fisheries and wildlife, public lands, oceans, Native Americans, irrigation and reclamation.
Congressman Frank Lucas, a 26-year member of the House will face Democrat Zoe Ann Midyett of Wellston in the November general election. She runs a feed store while Lucas farms and ranches in western Oklahoma.
Rep. Lucas is the ranking minority member on the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology and also serves on the Committee on Agriculture and the Committee on Financial Services.
Rep. Kendra Horn, the state’s only Democrat in the U.S. House serves the 5th district, drew nine Republican and one Democrat opponent. Like Rep. Lucas, she is a member of the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology and also serves on the Armed Services Committee.
Before being elected to the U.S. House two years ago, Rep. Horn was an attorney who worked for the Space Foundation as its Manager of Government Affairs and later as its Manager of Communication and Media Relations. Her resume also cited her studies at the International Space University in Strasbourg, France.
The Republicans challenging Horn for the Oklahoma, Pottawatomie and Seminole county seat are Sen. Stephanie Bice (R-OKC), former Superintendent of Public Instruction Janet Barresi, David Hill, Terry Neese, Charles Tuffy Pringle, Michael Ballard, Miles Rahimi, Shelli Landon and Jake Merrick.
Republican Rep. Tom Cole, in his 9th term in the House sits on the Rules Committee and the House Appropriations Committee. But he is also a member of numerous caucuses including the Aerospace Caucus, the Air Force Caucus, the Air Mobility Caucus, and caucuses for the Army and Natural Gas.
The drew three primary challengers including James Taylor, Trevor Sipes and Gilbert Sanders. Cole also attracted three Democratic challengers, Mary Brannon, John Argo and David Slemmons and one Libertarian opponent, Bob White.
U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe, who at 85 is seeking reelection will face four Democrats, three Republicans and a Libertarian. His opponents in the Republican primary will be Neil Mavis, John Tompkins and J.J. Stitt. Democrats who filed are Abby Broyles, Sheila Bilyeu, Elysabeth Britt and R.O. Joe Cassity Jr. The Libertarian is robert Murphy while independents Joan Farr and A.D. Nesbitt also filed for the Senate seat.
Sen. Inhofe is the chair of the Senate Armed Services Committee and sits on the Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation, the Committee on Environment and Public Works and the Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship.
He previously was chairman of the Committee on Environment and Public Works.