Tahlequah Daily Press

Local News

November 9, 2012

Locals at odds over election results

TAHLEQUAH — Though some of the furor over Tuesday night’s General Election has died down, local Democrats and Republicans remain at odds over how President Barack Obama should advance his second term.

Obama captured not only the Electoral College vote, but the popular vote as well. But that’s a nationwide tally; in Cherokee County, as in the rest of Oklahoma, Republican Mitt Romney won by a wide margin.

As of press time, final results posted by the Washington Post show Obama with 303 electoral votes, compared to challenger Mitt Romney’s 206, but the popular vote totals show the country is harshly divided. Obama tallied 50.4 percent of the popular ballots, with Romney close behind at 48. The difference separating the two candidates is 2,885,761 votes.

Romney won both Cherokee County and Oklahoma, and Cherokee County Republican Party Chairman Gary Gore is proud of that.

“Oklahoma got it right, and the nation didn’t,” said Gore. “They gave up a decent man in Romney to choose socialism.”

Gore pointed out how the country is basically divided, and that the popular vote was close. While many in the Republican Party may be reviewing strategy for the future, Gore believes it’s important to remain true to basic party principals.

“I want us to stick to our conservative principals,” said Gore. “You’ll hear a lot in the coming weeks about how the party needs to rename itself, or that maybe we need a third party to break the gridlock because neither party is going to do what needs to be done. It happens when you’ve worked really hard and you don’t win, but if we don’t stick to our principles, we’re not going to make it.”

Sen. Jim Wilson, D-Tahlequah, has fought for years for affordable health care for Oklahomans. He’s relieved the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act will remain intact.

“I’m really pleased the national election went the way it did,” said Wilson. “One of my biggest concerns is health care. We’ve been trying to get health care for everyone in this country for 100 years, and by re-electing Obama and the [Democratic] majority in the Senate, we’ll get two more solid years of the Affordable Care Act. [Once it’s phased in,] that will make it as popular as Medicare. That’s what the elections are going to buy us nationally, and is most likely the reason people went ahead and voted Democrat.”

Wilson said another reason Obama’s re-election is important to him, and the Democratic Party, is the potential for U.S. Supreme Court appointments.

“There are going to be some Supreme Court appointments,” said Wilson. “I would much rather see Obama have that [responsibility] than a conservative. What we saw in the election was a real backlash on the abortion issue, which is constitutionally protected for now. What’s happened is, there’s a theme within the entire Republican Party of trying to circumvent the Constitution, disregarding women completely, and the women picked up on that, and in doing so, voted Democratic. The Republicans recognize that now, that they’re going to have to quit kicking Hispanics and women around or they won’t be re-elected.”

Wilson sbelieves Obama is in a position now to take a harder line on the budget and other issues, and said Republicans will have to make a stronger effort at bipartisanship.

“This is a good thing overall,” said Wilson. “The Republicans no longer have to try to embarrass [Obama], because he doesn’t have to run again. This is what’s wonderful about the whole thing: We don’t have a guy who can be intimidated. He can make decisions that are unpopular, because he’s working on his legacy. He can get to work on budget issues. I think he’s in good shape. [Speaker of the House John] Boehner has no choice but to work with him, and we actually increased Democrats in the House. Boehner could be obstructionist, but it will be obvious, and the people will punish him for it.”

Daily Press Facebook “friends” weighed in on the election outcome, and a couple of people indicated they wish the political divisiveness would end.

“We are the United [emphasis added] States of America, and sadly that has not been true for some time,” said Tahlequah resident Cathy Cott.

“If N.Y. Gov. Chris Christie [a Republican] and President Barack Obama can set aside their considerable differences to help the people of New Jersey, then we should expect the same from all of our elected officials – all of them. We must work together for the future of our children’s United States of America. Divisiveness and bitterness are getting us nowhere.”

Jim Lee Masters Jr. said it’s time people come together to discuss issues, rather than partisan politics.

“I don’t think this election was a come-together moment,” said Masters. “Both the left and the right have issues that do not reflect the true feelings of the everyday person. There is a need for open discussion and dimming of the partisan divide. A look at the blue state, red state map is disturbing. I sincerely hope we can work out our differences in a civil and sane action, and not have the violence we see abroad.”

Gayle Factor, a Tahlequah resident originally from Denison, Texas, was disappointed in the election outcome, and suggested red states form a new union.

“I was born and raised a Democrat,” said Factor. “With the election four ears ago, I made the decision to vote for whom I felt would do the best job. I listened carefully to all the debates and speeches that I could, and therefore chose to vote Republican. After four years, I still feel this was the right decision. Personally, I feel that Oklahoma, Texas, and all the surrounding states that voted [Republican] should form their own union; we have the resources to survive without assistance.”

Area resident Andrea Henson said she was disappointed in the statewide voter turnout for the Democrats.

“Since there are more registered Democrats than Republicans in Oklahoma, I blame laziness for ruining our state,” said Henson.

“We had the opportunity to make real change here, and we didn’t. It seems that most Democrats in Oklahoma are content to sit at home on their butts and complain about what goes on in our state, but they don’t show up at the polls to make the changes necessary for a progressive state. [I] guess it’s back to the 1950s for us for a few more years.”

Area resident Joe Brownell is concerned about what the election outcome means for the country.

“If America is truly so far gone as to re-elect the man who defies our laws and Constitution and is spending the nation into poverty, then they deserve what they get,” said Brownell. “And it won’t be more of the same. [Obama] has no future election to lose, so it will be no holds barred.”

Tahlequah resident Jennifer Russell is pleased with the outcome, saying she, too, hopes to see more unity over the next four years.

“Democrats ran a tight race that has focused on everyone: all races, all sexes, all religions, all incomes,” said Russell.


To see the complete version of this article, subscribe to the Daily Press e-edition by following the link below.

Click here to get the entire Tahlequah Daily Press delivered every day to your home or office.

Click here to get a free trial or to subscribe to the Tahlequah Daily Press electronic edition. It's the ENTIRE newspaper (without the paper) for your computer, iPad or e-reader.

Text Only
Local News
  • sr-Sherman-Alexie.jpg Native wit

    Sherman Alexie Jr., self-professed “res” American Indian, dislikes casinos, mascots and Oklahoma for stealing his favorite basketball team.
    Northeastern State University welcomed the celebrated poet, writer and filmmaker to campus Wednesday, and the audience was treated to 90 minutes of witty and unblinking observation from the perspective of an American Indian all-too-familiar with life on a reservation.
    Alexie, named one of the 21st Century’s top 20 writers by The New Yorker, delivered what was essentially a standup monologue to a packed house in the auditorium of the W. Roger Webb Educational Technology Center. Some of Alexie’s best-known works are “The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven,” a book of short stories, and the film “Smoke Signals.”

    April 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • rock-jodi.jpg Woman serving time for burning baby seeks judicial review

    A Cherokee County mother sentenced to 17 years in prison for burning her 14-month-old baby with an iron is asking for a judicial review.
    Court records show Jodi Leann Rock, 21, requested a copy of her judgment and sentence, and this week filed an application for a judicial review. Copies of her request have been submitted to a judge and the District Attorney’s Office.

    April 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • SR-SchoolCharter.jpg Concerns expressed as SB 573 awaits House vote

    With an Oklahoma Senate bill now awaiting a vote on the floor of the House of Representatives, some parents are voicing concerns about the futures of rural K-8 schools in Cherokee County.
    Senate Bill 573 calls for a commission to establish charter schools throughout the state. A charter school receives taxpayer funding, but functions independently. They can be founded by an array of interests, including teachers, parents, universities and nonprofits. In Oklahoma, tribal entities can establish charter schools.

    April 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Man gets suspended sentence for possession

    A 37-year-old Webbers Falls man has been given a suspended sentence on drug-possession charges.
    Dusty Kayl Skaggs was charged with endeavoring to manufacture methamphetamine earlier this year after he and 43-year-old Misty Hayes Paden, of Muskogee, were arrested during execution of a search warrant.

    April 24, 2014

  • sr-NSU-Earth-day.jpg NSU students observe Earth Day

    Students and members of the community converged on Northeastern State University’s Second Century Square on Tuesday to spend an afternoon celebrating Earth Day.
    The event featured tables sponsored by campus organizations, prizes and music by Chris Espinoza. NSU’s Earth Day theme was “Gather Here. Go Green,” and was organized by the Committee for Sustainability and the Northeastern Student Government Association (NSGA).

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • ts-smallholders-courtesy.jpg Rural smallholders host annual show

    More and more, many people are showing growing interest in learning the sources of their food, including meat. As such, interest in farm-to-table living is increasing.
    Saturday, the Rural Smallholders Association held its annual spring show at the Cherokee County Fairgrounds, promoting the farming of sheep and goats, along with giving the general public a sample of their products.

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • pitts-hurley.jpg Wanted man nabbed during traffic stop

    Cherokee County sheriff’s deputies arrested a wanted man this week after a traffic stop near South Muskogee and Willis Road.
    Hurley D. Pitts, 40, was being sought by authorities on a motion to revoke a previous sentence.
    Sheriff’s Deputy Jarrick Snyder said he stopped a car after it ran off the road a couple of times. A woman was behind the wheel, and Pitts was sitting in the passenger seat.

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • SR-Wikafile.jpg Communiversity Band performs Sunday

    Musicians from on and off the Northeastern State University campus have made their final preparations for an upcoming performance of the NSU Communiversity Band.
    The ensemble performs Sunday, April 27, at 7 p.m., in the NSU Center for the Performing Arts. The conductor is Dr. Norman Wika, associate professor of music and band program director. Guest conductor is student Kameron Parmain. Admission is $5 for adults and $3 for students and seniors.
    “Everything has come together very well this semester,” Wika said.
    “We have about 40 musicians, and everyone who started the rehearsals has stuck with it. This could be the best Community Band concert yet.”

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Council concerned over reports of land contamination

    Negotiations involving the purchase of nearly 20 homes on 7 acres of land near Basin Avenue hit a snag Monday night when concerns surfaced over potential contamination of the area.
    Tahlequah Mayor Jason Nichols had proposed the city purchase the homes and duplexes as a large step in a greenbelt project, which would establish a solid park and trail system from the downtown area to the site of the city’s old solid waste transfer station.
    Until Monday, details of the negotiations had been mostly discussed behind closed doors, though Nichols confirmed the list price for the property to be $480,000.

    April 23, 2014

  • Council tables cell tower permit apps

    Tahlequah city councilors on Monday opted to hold off on approval of two special-use permit applications that would help AT&T install a couple of 150-foot cell towers within the city.
    Branch Communications is asking for the permits as it attempts to construct two monopole cell towers – one on Commercial Road near Green Country Funeral Home, and another at the Tahlequah Public Schools bus barn on Pendleton Street. Other towers are being built outside of the city limits.
    Members of the city’s planning and zoning board gave their OK for both permits last month.

    April 23, 2014


How confident are you that the immunizations for infants and children are reasonably safe?

Not at all confident.
Somewhat confident.
Relatively confident.
Extremely confident.
     View Results
Tahlequah Daily Press Twitter
Follow us on twitter
AP Video
Raw: Obama Tours Gyeongbok Palace Swimmer Michael Phelps Back in Competition Raw: Obama Lays Korean War Memorial Wreath Obama Leads Naturalization Ceremony in Seoul Calif. School Bus Crash Hurts Driver, 11 Kids Country Club for Exotic Cars Little Science Behind 'Pollen Vortex' Prediction US Proposes Pay-for-priority Internet Standards Wife Mourns Chicago Doctor Killed in Afghanistan FDA Proposes Regulations on E-cigarettes Kerry Warns Russia of Expensive New Sanctions Mideast Peace Talks Stall on Hamas Deal Cody Walker Remembers His Late Brother Paul Grieving South Korea Puts Up Yellow Ribbons Raw: Kerry Brings His Dog to Work Raw: Girls Survive Car Crash Into Their Bedroom Three U.S. Doctors Killed by Afghan Security Yankees' Pineda Suspended 10 Games for Pine Tar Colleagues Mourn Death of Doctors in Afghanistan Ukraine Launches Operation Against Insurgents