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Lankford Tops Club for Growth Candidate in Oklahoma’s 5th District

In Oklahoma, former youth camp director James Lankford will be the Republican nominee to replace Rep. Mary Fallin — and an overwhelming favorite to join Congress in January.

Lankford defeated former state Rep. Kevin Calvey in Tuesday’s runoff in the Oklahoma City-based 5th district. With nearly 40 percent of precincts reporting, Lankford had 62 percent of the vote and Calvey had 39 percent.

Lankford and Calvey finished first and second, respectively, in the July 27 primary. Because no one in the seven-candidate field topped the 50 percent threshold, the top two candidates headed to a runoff.

Lankford’s victory is a loss for the Club for Growth, the Oklahoma Rifle Association and the American Conservative Union, which all endorsed Calvey.

Lankford will face Democrat Billy Coyle in the general election. In this heavily conservative district, though, the Republican primary is likely to be decisive.

Fallin is the GOP nominee for governor in Oklahoma.

The other GOP runoff in Oklahoma took place on the eastern side of the state in the 2nd district, where Charles Thompson defeated Daniel Edmonds to earn the right to oppose Rep. Dan Boren (D) in November. With two-thirds of precincts reporting, Thompson had 64 percent of the vote to Edmonds’ 36 percent.

The two Republicans finished in the same order in July, beating four others at that point.

Thompson is unlikely to overcome Boren, though. Since Boren was first elected in 2004, the only Democratic member of the Oklahoma delegation has never fallen below 66 percent of the vote.

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