Oklahoma Insurance Commissioner Holland to Face Doak in November

August 26, 2010

Longtime insurance agent John Doak of Tulsa has defeated former Insurance Commissioner John Crawford of Oklahoma City for the Republican nomination for state insurance commissioner.

In the only statewide race on the ballot, Doak kept Crawford from returning to the office he held for one term in the 1990s. Doak will face incumbent Democratic Insurance Commissioner Kim Holland in November.

In his campaign, Doak, 47, opposed the new federal health care law and emphasized his 20 years as an insurance agent and executive.

“I think an Okie-Doak landslide is what it ended up being,” Doak said. “I think folks around the state have been very receptive to a new candidate who is educated and can speak on the issues.”

Doak said he believes he can be successful in an effort to repeal health care legislation recently passed in Congress.

Crawford, 78, served one term after being elected the state’s first Republican insurance commissioner in 1994. In a campaign with limited funds, he touted his more than 40 years as an insurance actuary, who specializes in mathematical calculations of risk. He also was a fierce critic of the new federal health care law, which he claims “will ration out care causing the elderly to be left without the care they need.”

Crawford was the target of a federal investigation in 1997 that centered on a $150,000 computer software contract with an Enid insurance company that was in receivership at the time and under Crawford’s control. No charges ever were filed, but Crawford lost his re-election bid in 1998 to former Insurance Commissioner Carroll Fisher, a Democrat who later served prison time on convictions for embezzlement and perjury.

Holland, a Democrat, was appointed to the post by Gov. Brad Henry in 2005 after Fisher resigned while facing impeachment by the state House over the corruption allegations that ultimately sent him to prison. Running for a full term in 2006, Holland became the first woman elected to the post. She also was an insurance agent before taking over as commissioner.

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