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State Senate Blocks Election Board Nomination (May 16, 2012)

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - The Republican-controlled Senate Rules Committee is blocking Gov. Mary Fallin's nomination of an Oklahoma City attorney to the state Election Board, drawing the ire of Democrats who contend it is because he is openly gay.

Rules Committee Chairman Sen. Rob Johnson said Wednesday that the sexual orientation of former Democratic Corporation Commissioner Jim Roth is not an issue. Johnson - a Republican from Kingfisher - says he thought it was inappropriate to appoint a former elected official to a post where he may have to rule on issues connected to a former opponent.

Democrats noted that the committee confirmed the appointment of a Republican nominee who is a longtime Republican Party activist.

Roth's Senate sponsor - Democratic Sen. Connie Johnson - accused the GOP of hypocrisy and prejudice.

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