Candidates for two state offices answer public's questions

    A forum for candidates for two state offices was held by VOICE. (KOKH/Will Maetzold)

    The group Voices Organized in Civic Engagement said it wants to give voters a clear idea of where candidates stand on the issues. It doesn't allow attacking or referencing the opponent and members also speak out about what matters to them.

    "Now I realize I may never know the full effect of budget cuts felt all across the state," teacher Aaron Baker said.

    Candidates for governor and the superintendent of education answered questions.

    Republic gubernatorial candidate Kevin Stitt was the only one not in attendance.

    "No aspect of education hasn't been harmed," Drew Edmondson, a democratic candidate for governor, said. "We need to help it all."

    Gubernatorial candidates answered questions on taxes, criminal justice reform and health care.

    Superintendent of education candidates answered questions on funding for schools across the state.

    "The need for textbooks," current superintendent and Republican candidate Joy Hofmeister said. "The need for people that can provide special education services, speech-language pathology, all kinds of needed tools."

    One of those in attendance at the forum was Terry Craighead. He has two children in the Oklahoma City Public School district and listened closely to education issues.

    "My kids are directly impacted by the lack of funding, the threats schools shutting down, not having enough resources in the classroom, not having enough teachers," Craighead said.

    He said hearing from the candidates in this way could go a long way to determining who to vote for.

    "There are some funding solutions that candidates could propose as governor, for example, they could advocate for," Craighead said.

    All the voters trying to gather as much as they can about who they'll soon see on a ballot.

    "They can see these are real people that have an effect on their life," Craighead said. "And they can go and take action on the people who are going to benefit their life."

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