McAlester News-Capital, McAlester, OK

October 14, 2012

Everything set for Tuesday candidate forum; city questions added

By James Beaty
Senior Editor

McALESTER — Everything is set for the candidate forum, set for 6 p.m. Tuesday in the Seminar Center at the Kiamichi Technology Center’s McAlester Campus.

Candidates in the Pittsburg County sheriff’s race, the District 7 state Senate race, and two of the candidates for the District 2 U.S. representative’s office have confirmed they will participate in the forum.

All of the candidates will be on the ballot for the Nov. 6 General Election.

Also McAlester Mayor Pete Stasiak and Mayor Steve Harrison plan to speak and answer questions about the two city questions which will be on the Nov. 6  ballot.

The forum is sponsored by the McAlester News-Capital and KTC, and is open to the public.

 News-Capital Publisher Amy Johns is serving as moderator for the event.

“I want to encourage all of the people to come out,” Johns said, noting it’s an opportunity for voters to become more educated on the issues.

It’s also an opportunity for voters to meet candidates they haven’t met before and reconnect with those they already know.

Candidates will have an opportunity to make opening statements, followed by questions presented by the News-Capital staff.

In the race for the District 2  U.S. representative’s seat, Democratic candidate Rob Wallace, of Fort Gibson, and Independent candidate Michael Fulks, of Heavener, have confirmed they will participate in the forum.

Wallace is a former U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of Oklahoma; a former district attorney for  Latimer and LeFlore counties, and has served as an assistant district attorney in District 18, which covers Pittsburg and Haskell counties.

Fulks, of Heavener, said he works in the area of computer support on the staff of Carl Albert State College in Poteau. He said he also works in Internet marketing and has worked with dozens of small businesses.

In the District 7 state Senate race,  Republican candidate Larry Boggs, of Red Oak, and Democratic candidate J. Paul Lane, of McAlester, are seeking a four-year term for the seat currently held by District 7 state Sen. Richard Lerblance, D-Hartshorne.

Lerblance, who because of term limits would not have been able to serve the full four years in office if elected, opted not to seek re-election.

In the Pittsburg County sheriff’s race, Democratic incumbent Joel Kerns is seeking a second four-year term.

He faces a challenge from Independent candidate Tracy Parrott, who is a former Pittsburg County deputy.

Republican District 2 candidate Markwayne Mullin was invited to participate in the Tuesday night forum and his campaign considered the offer to participate for several days, but opted to make an appearance in Idabel instead.

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