The Norman Transcript

Opinion

September 7, 2013

A third Henry term?

NORMAN — The list of names of prospective Democratic candidates for governor are few these days. Former Lt. Gov. Jari Askins seems comfortable in her duties with the University of Oklahoma. Former Congressman Dan Boren likes his work with the Chickasaw Nation. After those two, the list narrows to some legislators with big ideas and small checkbooks.

Now comes a story that former two-term Gov. Brad Henry could be a repeat candidate for governor in 2014. Mr. Henry, 50, now an attorney doing consulting work in Norman, told the Associated Press he wasn’t interested in 2014 but wouldn’t completely rule out the possibility of a future race. He believes he is eligible for a third term.

“There’s a little bit of light shining through that door because you never say never,” Mr. Henry told the AP’s Capitol Correspondent Sean Murphy.

A Henry candidacy in 2014 would throw open the governor’s race. He won in 2002 and 2006 and remains popular in both parties. Mr. Henry’s wife, Kim, heads the Sarkeys Foundation in Norman.

At the time Mr. Henry served as governor, the Oklahoma Constitution prohibited him from serving more than two times in succession. The constitution was amended in 2010 to limit any governor to no more than eight years in office, but Mr. Henry believes that provision would not apply retroactively to him.

It could be a question to ask the Oklahoma Supreme Court now rather than wait until 2018 or beyond.

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