U.S. Senate race in Oklahoma pits storied incumbent versus potential history-making newcomer

Incumbent Inhofe looks to hold off Democratic challenger Broyles

U.S. Senate race in Oklahoma pits storied incumbent versus potential history-making newcomer
Incumbent Republican Jim Inhofe looks to hold off challenge from Democrat Abby Broyles in the U.S. Senate race in Oklahoma. (Source: KSLA)

SHREVEPORT, LA. (KSLA) - For 85-year-old Republican Sen. Jim Inhofe, who turns 86 in just weeks — he’s looking to spend another half dozen years representing Oklahoma in Washington, D.C., until the age of 92.

“I don’t feel he’s fit to run. He can’t get through an interview without notes,” claims 30-year-old Democratic challenger Abby Broyles. “He’s not longer up for being a U.S. senator.”

U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe first got into politics in 1967.
U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe first got into politics in 1967. (Source: KWTV/CBS)

It is part of the reason, she says, Inhofe refused to debate her in the weeks leading up to the Nov. 3 election.

“Everyone knows where I stand on every issue,” the senator answered in an email reply to a host of questions from KSLA News 12′s Doug Warner.

His campaign stated that the senator wasn’t available for an on-camera Zoom interview, but that he would reply by email to questions.

Democratic challenger Abby Broyles
Democratic challenger Abby Broyles (Source: Abby Broyles campaign)

“It’s a shame that people would push such blatant discrimination against individuals based on nothing more than their age,” Inhofe responded to Broyles' claim of him not being fit to run.

He first got into politics in 1967 after being elected to the Oklahoma House, later as the mayor of Tulsa and eventually to the U.S. Senate in 1994, a seat he’s held ever since.

“I’m proud of what I accomplished, both for Oklahoma in the form of increased highway dollars and more resources for roads, bridges and waterways, and for the nation in the form of predictable authorizations and timely project completion,” Inhofe’s answer to a question about his long-running tenure in the U.S. Senate.

Broyles decided to enter the race after a decade as a TV news reporter in East Texas and Oklahoma City and more recently graduating law school.

“I saw how out of touch Jim Inhofe is with every day Oklahomans,” continued Broyles, explaining why she decided to enter the race.

One recent poll conducted by SoonerPoll by the CBS news affiliate in Oklahoma City, KWTV, has Inhofe with a solid 20% lead.

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