McAlester News-Capital, McAlester, OK

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March 13, 2014

Silverstein campaigns locally for Inhofe's Senate seat

McALESTER — A young Tulsa Democrat has started a campaign in Pittsburg County to challenge the incumbent Republican Senator for his seat in Congress.

The United States Senate election is Nov. 4 and Democrat Matt Silverstein has been campaigning in Pittsburg County to take the seat of Republican Senate Incumbent Jim Inhofe.

Earlier this month Tulsa native Silverstein, 33, said he attended a fundraiser dinner at the home of former Senator Richard Lerblance and last week he visited with McAlester native son former Oklahoma Governor George Nigh.

On Tuesday during a telephone interview with the New-Capital, Silverstein, said he’s a Democrat who supports the Second Amendment, thinks Obama care is broken, and wasteful government spending needs to be cut.

He said he supports gun rights because of his grandfather 91-year-old Quentin Smith, of Oklahoma City.

“I am an adamant supporter of the Second Amendment, my grandfather after was robbed multiple times, he kept a 38 snub-nose revolver under his bed for years.”

And Silverstein said he doesn’t have a problem with using the term “Obama Care” for the Affordable Care Act.

“I don’t see it as a derogatory term,” Silverstein said.

But he said the new insurance program isn’t working.

“Obama-Care is broken,” Silverstein said.

“It doesn’t fix what’s wrong with the insurance system. It doesn’t address the issues of soaring premiums, and health care costs.”

He said he plans to cut wasteful spending.

“We have to cut the spending and support our veterans,” Silverstein said.

“I think we should honor our veterans and keep our promises. They’ve already fought abroad they shouldn’t have to fight here at home.”

Silverstein said during his visit last week with Nigh, the two discussed the importance of saving military jobs in McAlester and the state.

“Governor Nigh and I had a good talk about the issues important to Oklahoma and his hometown of McAlester.”

According to a press release Silverstein said the wasting money won’t save military jobs.

“We aren’t going to save military jobs by wasting more money on things the Pentagon doesn’t need,” Silverstein said.

We need a fresh start with fiscal responsibility to save and strengthen military jobs and our financial futures. The people on those bases know good and well that we can’t be strong abroad with our military until we are first strong at home with getting our fiscal house in order,” Silverstein said in the press-release.

Meanwhile, during the interview on Tuesday, Silverstein said one of his goals in making the government more transparent is to make all government expenditures available online so they are easy to read.

“We have no transparency in the Federal government, I want to change that,” he said.

He also said he plans to return to Pittsburg County several more times to meet with voters.

“I made a promise while to all the people that were at the Lerblances, Silverstein said.

“I will return to Pittsburg County at least a half-dozen more times between now and election day.”

Contact Jeanne LeFlore at jleflore@mcalesternews.com.

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