OGE contributed heavily to Bingman in Corporation Commission primary



The same day that Oklahoma Corporation Commissioners consider Oklahoma Gas and Electric’s reduced rate hike request, from $332 million to $126 million, it’s clear who the utility’s top executives are backing in the primary election for Corporation Commission.

Campaign contribution records on file with the Oklahoma Ethics Commission show 16 OG&E executives and the company’s employee Political Action Committee contributed nearly $43,000 to Brian Bingman. Many of the $42,600 in contributions from the employees came on the same day, November 6, 2023.

The PAC gave the largest contribution of $5,000 to the former state Senate leader who announced his candidacy last fall after resigning as Secretary of State and immediately drawing the endorsement of Gov. Kevin Stitt. The largest contribution by any one of the OG&E executives was $3,300 from President Sean Trauschke. One contributor was OG&E attorney Kimber Shoop who appears routely before the Corporation Commission on any of the utility’s requests.

No other utility contributed as much money to Bingman’s campaign as OG&E. A few Public Service Company executives gave money that helped build his campaign contribution pile to more than $399,000, dwarfing funds raised by the two other GOP candidates, Russell Ray and Justin Hornback. Neither Ray nor Hornback received any money from OG&E.

Following Trauschke, here are the other OG&E executives and what they gave to Bingman’s campaign.

Robert Burch, VP OGE $1,000

Andrea Dennis, Executive OGE, $1,000

Keith Erickson, VP Sales & Customer Operations OGE, $1,000

Donnie Jones, VP Power Supply Operations, $1,500

Cristina McQuisition, Executive OGE, $1,500

Ken Miller, VP Public & Regulatory Affairs, OGE $1,000

Matt Schuermann, Generation Executive, OGE, $1,000

Bryan Scott, Director of Pricing & Load Research, $500

Kimber Shoop, Attorney OGE, $500

Emily Shuart, Director Federal, RTO & Environmental Affairs, $500

Sarah Stafford, Controller, OGE, $1,000

William Sultemeier, Counsel, OGE, $1,500

Charles Wadworth, Treasurer, OGE, $1,000

Johnny Whitfried, VP of Business Intelligence, OG&E, $1,000

Christine Woodworth, VP Marketing/Commerce, OGE $1,000

The contributions from OG&E to Bingman represented 17 out of 49 donations from energy and utility related companies, according to the records. Two other $5,000 contributions, in addition to the OG&E Employees PAC came from Ovintiv Inc., an oil and gas firm known in Oklahoma for its exploration in the STACK play and from the Oklahoma Petroleum Alliance PAC.

Other contributions of some interest included $100 from Chase Snodgrass, an attorney with the state Attorney General’s office. He appears before most meetings of the Oklahoma Corporation Commission representing the Attorney General in issues, including recent discussions and meetings regarding OG&E’s original $332 million rate hike request. The Attorney General’s office also agreed to a stipulation agreement as OG&E lowered its request to $126 million.

Other energy companies also felt a need to contribute to OG&E including Energy Transfer, PSO, Calyx Energy, Black Mesa Energy, Crawley Petroleum, HF Sinclair, Staghorn Petroleum, Empire Petroleum, RKI Exploration, Koch, NGL Energy Partners, Sanguine Gas, Ram Energy, Kingery Production. Link Oil, Marathon Oil, Triad Energy, JMA Energy, Mewbourne Oil and Golden Gas Service Co.,

Candidate Russell Ray, according to Ethics Commission reports, started his campaign with $2,702.50 in contributions. But no other reports have been filed.

Justin Hornback reported receiving $25,415 in contributions for the period April 1, 2024 to June 3, 2024. He indicated $25,550 was his own money given to his campaign.