David Holt wins a second term

Incumbent David Holt won re-election to a second term as mayor of Oklahoma City on Tuesday, a victory the OKC native called a voter statement against the partisan divide plaguing the country.

The election drew the most voters in a mayoral election since 1959, according to Oklahoman records, with more than 60,000 ballots cast. Defeating opponents from both left and right sides of the political spectrum, Holt said in his victory speech that Oklahoma City is a place where people can work together across party lines.

His re-election guarantees this ideal, he said.

“Today was a statement from the people of Oklahoma City,” Holt said. “A statement that we as a city reject lies, racism and bigotry.”

With all constituency reports, Holt had 59.8% of the vote. Frank Urbanic had 19.9%, Carol Hefner 13.6% and Jimmy Lawson 6.6%.

Live results:Follow the counting of votes in Tuesday’s election

Mayor of Oklahoma City is a nonpartisan office that earns $24,000 a year and is one of nine votes on the city council. Holt is a licensed attorney and managing director of investor relations at Hall Capital.

City Manager Craig Freeman said he appreciates the incumbent staying at City Hall.

“It’s really good, he’s trying to run the whole town,” Freeman said at Holt’s election watch party.

OKC Mayor David Holt’s campaign contributions near record highs

Holt’s re-election bid proved to be Oklahoma City’s most expensive mayoral campaign, having raised at least $805,000 according to reports filed with the city clerk’s office. Holt’s predecessor, Mick Cornett, raised $801,000 in 2014.

More than $1.15 million has been raised by the four contestants as of January 24.

Of the 357,789 people eligible to vote in this election, 60,756 voters voted, or 16.9%. This is an increase from the 8.4% of eligible voters in the 2018 mayoral election in which Holt was elected to succeed Mick Cornett, and the 13.5% who turned out for MAPS 4 in 2019.

Absentee voting has nearly quadrupled since Holt’s first election, with 5,391 mail-in ballots eclipsing the 2018 total of 1,396. Holt received 4,069 of the mail-in votes.

Mayor David Holt's Vigil Party in the Great Hall of the First National Center on Tuesday, February 8, 2022.

OKC Mayor David Holt’s campaign to ‘find a common goal’

Holt’s re-election campaign, reminiscent of his initial bid for mayor, focused on the idea of ​​”One OKC.”

Holt promised then and now that he would bring all of Oklahoma City’s voices to the city government conversation.

“We need to put aside the things that divide us and find a common goal,” Holt told his campaign audience. “It’s what made America great and what makes Oklahoma City great.”

Holt has garnered more than 2,000 endorsements from individuals and organizations, including local police and fire unions.

Well known for his Twitter presence, Holt used his accounts of over 45,000 followers to promote his campaign. In the days leading up to and on Election Day, he retweeted dozens of supporters telling their followers why they were voting to re-elect Holt.

And just hours before the polls closed, the incumbent took to Twitter to make a victory prediction.

“All of you, we need to work together,” Holt wrote. “At OKC, if we don’t work together as Republicans and Democrats, we will never accomplish anything. Expect validation of that tonight.”

The former state senator’s call for unification was in stark contrast to opponents Hefner and Urbanic, who have used their campaigns to criticize the mayor’s status as a moderate Republican and lifelong politician, his support for President Biden’s recent infrastructure bill and his efforts to pass the MAPS 4 1-cent sales tax for 16 projects totaling nearly $1 billion.

Hefner didn’t respond to requests for comment Tuesday night, while Lawson simply said “Congratulations David Holt!!!” by text.

“All citizens of Oklahoma City should have peace of mind knowing that Carol Hefner will never be mayor,” Urbanic told The Oklahoman via text Tuesday night.

Oklahoma City mayoral candidate Frank Urbanic talks to supporters at a watch party in Oklahoma City, Tuesday, Feb. 8, 2022.

OKC Mayor David Holt’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic, discussion on police reform

The second half of Holt’s first four-year term as mayor was defined by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Just three months after OKC voters passed MAPS 4, Utah jazz player Rudy Gobert tested positive for coronavirus just before the whistleblower during a Jazz-Thunder game on March 11, 2020 The game and the NBA season were canceled as a result.

Four days later, Holt declared a state of emergency for Oklahoma City.

Throughout the pandemic, Holt has shared data on cases, deaths and hospitalizations to encourage residents to take precautions.

Mitigation efforts by Holt and the city council included a citywide mask ordinance that ran from July 17, 2020 to April 30, 2021 and a 10-day campaign in November 2020 during which Holt Asked residents to avoid activities and gatherings in hopes of stemming a forming third wave.

Ever since vaccines became widely available, Holt has consistently promoted vaccination and voted for a new mask mandate last August, which failed 4-5.

Barely two months into the pandemic, the killing of George Floyd by Minneapolis police gripped the nation and put police reform at the forefront of municipal government discussions across America, including Oklahoma City.

Holt attended a peaceful Black Lives Matter protest on May 30 to listen to protesters.

He formed the Mayor’s Law Enforcement Policy Task Force and Community Policing Task Force later that summer. The two groups worked with Chicago-based consultant 21CP Solutions to compile a list of police reform recommendations that should soon be submitted to the city council for approval.

Holt also formed the Mayor’s Task Force on Homelessness, which created an action plan to end homelessness, with eight focus areas, including affordable housing, transportation, awareness and community management. case.

Newly re-elected mayor David Holt speaks to the crowd as his family, Maggie, George and Rachel look on.  Mayor David Holt's Vigil Party in the Great Hall of the First National Center on Tuesday, February 8, 2022.

Oklahoma City’s Economic Recovery

Holt has been one of the biggest cheerleaders for the Oklahoma City economy, both before the pandemic and during its recent recovery, touting the low unemployment rate of 1.6% and record collections. sales taxes since last May.

Prior to the pandemic, Holt was largely focused on forming MAPS 4 and promoting its passage. More than any previous MAPS, the latest edition of the 1-Cent Sales Tax funds human needs in addition to traditional parks, streets and capital projects.

The outgoing mayor also oversaw the completion of MAPS 3’s latest projects, including Scissortail Park, the tram and the new OKC convention center.

Holt said his reelection was indicative of the city’s continued support for MAPS, a celebration of the city’s economic success and record unemployment rate.

Over the next four years, Holt said he looks forward to increasing funding for core services such as police and fire, overseeing the implementation of MAPS 4, improving and supporting the public education and to continue to include diverse voices in city conversations.

“We protected Oklahoma City’s unique political culture,” Holt said Tuesday night. “We are not a red city, a blue city or even a purple city. We are Oklahoma City… Thank you for the honor of being your mayor.”

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