OKLAHOMA CITY - Despite trailing Oklahoma Attorney General Mike Hunter by a tenth of a percent and provisional ballots needing counting, Tulsa attorney Gentner Drummond conceded the race for the Republican ticket for attorney general.
Drummond, during a press conference in Tulsa Wednesday, said even with a historically close margin -- a 269 vote difference -- the cost of conducting a recount would do more harm to the Republican party and its chances to retain the attorney general's office in November.
"The upcoming elections are critically important for the future of Oklahoma and a statewide recount would simply serve as a prolonging distraction," Drummond said. "The primary election cycle was negative and divisive, but now is the time for healing and for unity."
Hunter thanked Drummond during a brief press conference Wednesday afternoon.
"So that was what Mr. Drummond shared with me, that he didn’t see the math working for him, with regard to (provisional ballots). He didn’t see the math working for him, in regard to a recount," Hunter said, calling the prospect of a recount "oppressive."
"I appreciated his graciousness and commitment to go into the general election with his support."
Hunter is seeking his first full term as attorney general. He was appointed to the office by Governor Mary Fallin in February 2017 after President Trump tapped then-Attorney General Scott Pruitt to lead the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Pruitt resigned from the EPA post in July amid more than a dozen ethics, travel and spending scandals investigations.
Hunter said Wednesday despite the mudslinging between he and Drummond throughout the race, now is the time to focus on November. Hunter will face Democrat Mark Myles, an Oklahoma City attorney.
“I don’t view those who voted for Mr. Drummond as having voted against me," Hunter said. "He also expressed to me, going into the general election, as a united front with a nominee that had the support of the Republican Party and had his support."