Thursday, July 20, 2006

Oklahoma's Second in Command

I am amused by all the sudden interest in the position of Lieutenant Governor for Oklahoma. This is a largely ceremonial position, much like that of the V.P. of the U.S.

I have lost count of all the candidates running for this office. I have to ask myself, why? Judging once again by the amount of money being spent on campaigns, I am left with the conclusion that it is power lust.

Kudo's to Mary Fallin our current Lt. Governor. She has done a fine job, whatever the job was. She was there long enough to make a difference. At least I remember who the Lt. Governor is. Oh yeah, Lt. Governor since 1994, first woman and first Republican Lt. Governor of Oklahoma (about time, don't you think?) :)

Well, the Republicans and the Democrats obviously think this is an important race. They are pouring millions into campaigns for a job that only pays pretty well. Nothing in the range though to justify on its face the money being spent to get your candidate there. So then, why?

Both parties are jockeying for power and position, whereever they perceive they have a real chance. I am sick of all the phoneys coming out of the woodwork.


Tyson Wynn said...

In addition to the unquenchable lust for power, there are two considerations we need also to recognize.

Like the VP of the US, the Lt. Gov. is President of the Senate. Under the OK Const. (, the Lt. Gov. is given a "casting vote" only. The quick and dirty explanation of a casting vote is that is a vote to make or break a tie Lt. Gov. only gets to vote when his/her vote would make a difference in the outcome). In the case of making a tie, the measure being voted upon would fail (rather than pass without the Lt.'s vote); in the case of breaking a tie, the measure would succeed (instead of failing with a tie). Dick Cheney's casting vote has come in handy a few times in the US Senate because it is so narrowly split between parties, and if Republicans don't get an overwhelming majority in the OK Senate (or even if they remain a one-seat minority), the Lt. Gov's casting may be very important in the next session, especially if we have a true tie in the Senate.

The second thing we need to recognize is that many politicians consider Lt. Gov. good for the ole resume when the are considering higher office. Mary Fallin has attempted higher office a couple times, but ended up staying where she is until now. In all likelihood, Lt. Gov. candidates have higher aspirations in the future, such as Governor or some of the Federal offfices.

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