Labor hopeful rebuts news report

CapitolBeatOK Staff Report

Labor Commissioner candidate Jason Reese has responded to an online news report, circulated last week, concerning an alleged campaign finance infraction. Reese was critical of the report, which he noted came a day after he publicly questioned the state House Leadership – including his Republican primary opponent Rep. Tad Jones — concerning small businesses and economic growth.

In a statement sent to CapitolBeatOK, Reese said, “I find the timing of this baseless attack very interesting, given our press release [on January 20].” Reese said if the author of the story had checked with his campaign, “we could have easily supplied them with copies of the correspondence with the Ethics Commission Executive Director in which she expressly authorizes the contribution in question.”

Reese continued, “Frankly, we’re not surprised by this attack and expected it at some point in the campaign.”

Reese, a MidTown Oklahoma City attorney, and Jones, who represents House District 9 (Claremore), are Republican candidates seeking to unseat Commissioner of Labor Lloyd Fields, a Democrat from McAlester.
The state Department of Labor, run by the labor commissioner, is a key agency for enforcement of workers’ compensation laws.