“For several months, a lot of people have encouraged me to run for governor, and I’ve decided it’s time for me to discuss that possibility with people across the state,” he said Friday. “It’s a big decision, so I’m not going to rush into it.”
Istook said he thinks Oklahoma needs a stronger leadership voice.
“Governor Henry seems focused on shifting money around inside the state through taxes and gambling for the benefit of state government,” he said. “But I’d rather focus on bringing more into our state, like I’ve been doing as I’ve helped to improve our transportation, medical research and our schools in a way that has already, through my work, brought more jobs to Oklahoma.”
Istook, who was first elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1992, said he is not concerned about Gov. Brad Henry’s popularity.
“For those who believe in polls, I think it’s important to note that his numbers are broad but very shallow,” he said. “People vote according to the choices given to them. It’s not just whether someone is willing to vote for a person but whether they would prefer to vote for a different person.”
A June Oklahoma Poll showed Henry with a 72 percent approval rating statewide among those who expect to vote in November 2006. The survey is sponsored by the Tulsa World and KOTV, Channel 6, and conducted by SoonerPoll.com.