OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — A mayor vying for a vacant Oklahoma House seat won a special Republican primary Tuesday.
GOP voters in the three counties covered by the seat elected Marlow Mayor Brad Boles as their party’s nominee by an overwhelming margin — 82 percent to 18 percent — over Chickasha businessman Dustin Payne. Boles will face Democrat Charles L. Murdock of Cheyenne in a special general election on March 6 to determine who fills the seat.
The District 51 House seat covers Grady, Stephens and McClain counties in southern Oklahoma. The vacancy was created by the resignation of three-term Republican Rep. Scott Biggs of Chickasha, who stepped down to accept an appointment by President Donald Trump to Farm Service Agency state director. Biggs announced his resignation in November.
In his new role, Biggs will help implement U.S. Department of Agriculture policies in planning, organizing and administering the agency’s programs in Oklahoma.
Biggs, an ex-prosecutor and an opponent of proposed changes in Oklahoma’s criminal justice system, was elected to his third term in November 2016 and served as assistant House majority leader and chairman of the House Criminal Justice and Corrections Committee. He blocked criminal justice proposals backed by Gov. Mary Fallin that he argued would reduce penalties for violent crimes.