The Duncan Banner

February 18, 2014

Lankford: It could always be worse

Steve Olafson
The Duncan Banner

DUNCAN — U.S. Rep. James Lankford, the Republican who wants to be the next junior U.S. Senator for Oklahoma, said in Duncan on Monday everyone should keep their persective when worrying about how bad things are in America these days.

After all, there was a Civil War once, and before that, in 1804,  the Vice President literally killed the Secretary of the Treasury in a duel, he told a political gathering at the Daybreak Diner.

If Lankford intended the history lesson as a seriocomic moment, he may have missed the mark. Nobody laughed.

Instead, about 50 people spent an hour peppering him with a barrage of serious-minded questions about Obamacare, the budget deficit, the national debt, illegal immigration, education and other topics, which he addressed from what he calls his “Biblical world view.”

Now in his second term in the 5th Congressional District, Lankford received just a single question about his fledgling campaign for the U.S. Senate seat that will be vacated by Tom Coburn at the end of the year. When asked to compare himself with the man considered to be his main opponent in the June 24 Republican primary — State Rep. T.W. Shannon of Lawton — Lankford said he “doesn’t want to diminish anyone” and prefers to talk about his own qualifications rather than describing his opponents.

“T.W.’s a friend,” he said.

Later, he told The Banner the differences between the two candidates will “come out organically in time.”

After his stop in Duncan, Lankford visited Lawton and Altus.