McAlester News-Capital, McAlester, OK

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September 12, 2011

Wayne Pettigrew jumps into congressional race

McALESTER — A McAlester native planned to formally announce his candidacy today for the Second District congressional post which will be up for election next year.

Wayne Pettigrew is set to make his official campaign announcement speech at noon at The Meeting Place in downtown McAlester.

Pettigrew is a Republican candidate for the seat currently held by District 2 U.S. Rep. Dan Boren, D-Muskogee. Boren has said he will finish his current term, which expires next year, but said he will not seek re-election.

“I would like to be the first person since Carl Albert from McAlester to serve in Congress,” said Pettigrew, referring to the former Democratic U.S. House speaker and longtime Congressman who served from 1947-1977.

Pettigrew, who is a 1980 McAlester High School graduate, said he’s the only candidate in the District 2 race who was born in the district.

“Of all the candidates who are running, I’m the only one born in McAlester,” Pettigrew said.

He also said he has another distinction. With the massive deficit the U.S. is facing, Pettigrew said he’s the only candidate with a college degree in business administration, accounting and finance. Less than 15 percent of current congressman have a degree in business or economics, he said.

Pettigrew said he has experience in business, since he currently operates two of them.

He noted he is also an experienced legislator.

“I have a prior voting recovered dealing with substantive issues,” Pettigrew said.

After moving from the McAlester area, he served as the District 39 state representative from 1994 until 2004. When he took office, the district was largely a rural district northwest of the Oklahoma City area, said Pettigrew.

The candidate said he wants to help solve the problems America is facing.

He planned today’s stop in McAlester as part of a 15-city swing over the next three days. The tour started in Tahlequah this morning and is set to end in Claremore at 5 p.m. on Wednesday.

For more of the story, see Monday’s issue of the McAlester News-Capital.

Contact James Beaty at jbeaty@mcalesternews.com.

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