|Born||(1954-12-09) December 9, 1954 (age 57) Warrensburg, Missouri, U.S.|
|Spouse(s)||Joseph Fallin (1984-1998) Wade Christensen|
|Alma mater||Oklahoma Baptist University University of Central Oklahoma Oklahoma State University, Stillwater|
Fallin was elected Governor of Oklahoma in 2010 after spending two terms in Congress and prior to that three terms as the state’s Lieutenant Governor. She is seen as strong willed, conservative and in her first year in office she streamlined and modernized state government, reformed education, and reduced health care costs. In that first year, she also sought out to make up a $400 million budget deficit through a combination of a 5% across-the-board agency budget cuts,and increased tax enforcement.
Fallin is not an immediate addition to any list of potential vice presidential candidates but any process that is designed to take a comprehensive look at the best possible prospects, would have to conclude that Mary Fallin has to be considered.
While Oklahoma is not a swing state that has a chance of going for President Obama in 2012, Fallin’s appeal on a wider scale can not be denied. However, much like several other potential running mates, Fallin has yet to really prove herself as an accomplished political leader on the executive level. If given the chance though, she can confidently articulate the issues and lay out her vision in a way that can help prove she is to up to the job. The only real immediate drawback to her candidacy is the fodder that an old incident might become in a national election.
In December 1998, an Oklahoma Highway Patrol bodyguard for then Lt. Gov. Fallin, resigned after admitting to unprofessional conduct. One week before that disclosure, Fallin filled for divorce amid allegations by her estranged husband that she had had an affair with a bodyguard. During this time, the trooper who admitted to “unprofessional conduct” resigned but never claimed that his conduct involved any sexual activity with Fallin.
The relevance of that really only lies in how much traction as a distraction it could become in the election and if Republicans can afford to or want to contend with it possibly becoming an issue. Then again, few thought that Newt could make it as far as he did in the presidential contest and he has been accused of multiple affairs. So if ones personal relationships are not the focus of national politics in 2012, Fallin has a fair chance of winding up on the long list of potential running mates.
- Can help improve Romney’s standing among women voters
- Helps Romney among evangelicals and shores up his opposition to abortion rights
- Has not established herself as a powerful force nationally or regionally
- Has not yet been vetted to any great extent
- Has some dirty laundry that will be aired in any national campaign and could become too much of a distraction
- In office as Governor for only two years but has served multiple terms as Lt. Governor
While there is nothing that should preclude Fallin from the ticket, there is also not much to push her ahead of others to the nomination in a long line of more accomplished and prominent leaders. She does not have any single claim to fame or immediately outstanding expertise in any area of concern in this election and she does not have any significant regional following. However, any negatives regarding Fallin are overshadowed by the positives in her record and as such she may help to energize some of the uninspired voters within the Southern base of the G.O.P.. and she could be a decent compromise candidate. Still though, she remains an longshot.
Recent Key Votes
April 16, 2012
April 13, 2012
April 13, 2012
Mary Fallin on The Issues