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Broyles advisor says Inhofe 'too damn old' for Senate

Broyles advisor says Inhofe 'too damn old' for Senate

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Jim Inhofe and Abby Broyles (copy)

Inhofe (left) and Broyles

Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Abby Broyles’ own polling shows her trailing by 15-18 points but she’s still in a position to upset Republican incumbent Jim Inhofe, Broyles’ campaign adviser said Friday.

“He sees the same thing or he wouldn’t be out with an attack ad,” said Ryan Hawkins.

The ad in question is a new one that goes after Broyles directly. A previous spot made no mention of her at all.

Using one ad to boost a candidate and another to attack the opposition is not unusual, but Hawkins insisted Inhofe is “in the worst position he’s ever been in during 25 years in the Senate.”

That, he said, is because Inhofe, despite a big lead, still polls under 50 percent. Broyles is in the low 30s, with around 15 percent either undecided or favoring one of the race’s other three candidates.

Hawkins said Broyles and Inhofe are almost even in Tulsa and Oklahoma City.

Independent polling in the race has been sparse, but one released Friday by Amber Integrated, an Oklahoma City consulting firm, was consistent with Broyles’. It had Inhofe leading 46%-30% with an approval rating of 48%.

In any event, Hawkins’ message Friday was the same as it’s been throughout — Abby Broyles’ campaign is not about her, it’s about Jim Inhofe.

“He’s too damn old,” Hawkins said several times.

Inhofe Campaign Manager Evan Handy called such claims “ageist” and an attempt to deflect attention from “radical liberal” Broyles’ unwillingness to publicize her positions on important issues.

Broyles camp, meanwhile, points out Inhofe has refused to discuss any issues with Broyles and as recently as Thursday said he doesn’t know anything about her.

Hawkins said the 85-year-old Inhofe, who first entered elected office in 1967, “can’t articulate a sentence” and relies on aides feeding him notes to carry on conversations.

“If the staffer is off, (Inhofe) is not able to answer a single question,” Hawkins said.

Broyles, 30, is a former television reporter who has never run for office. She has attacked Inhofe relentlessly for being, she says, out of touch with constituents and the realities of the average Oklahoman.

Inhofe served in the Oklahoma Legislature and as Tulsa mayor before winning the First Congressional District in 1986. He moved to the Senate in 1994 following a special election.


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Gallery: Jim Inhofe’s political career over the years

Randy Krehbiel

918-581-8365

randy.krehbiel@tulsaworld.com

Twitter: @rkrehbiel

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