An emotional Kenra Horn told supporters at a campaign watch party in the Tower Theater Oklahoma City, that while she may have lost on Tuesday in her bid for reelection to second term in representing the 5th Congressional District, she isn’t going away.
Horn, the Democrat incumbent, lost to challenger Stephanie Bice, a Republican state senator, with 47.94% of the votes. Bice received 52.06% of the votes, according to returns posted by the Oklahoma State Election Commission.
The limited crowd of mask-wearing supporters cheered as Horn announced that the work they started in the 2018 election was not over.
“While tonight’s results aren’t what we want them to be, we have to remember that the fight is not over,” Horn said. “We have to remember that this seat does not belong to a party; it belongs to the people of Oklahoma.”
The atmosphere was somewhat subdued in the Tower Theater, as crowd size was limited due to COVID-19 precautions. The only in-person speaker was Horn herself, with other campaign speakers being broadcast online via Zoom to speak about issues important to the Horn campaign such as healthcare, education and the economy.
It was just the opposite at the watch party for State Sen. Stephanie Bice, who cruised to victory.
In her acceptance speech at her own watch party Tuesday night, Bice said that she intends to work to give Pelosi a “new title” of “former Speaker of the House.”
“I am thrilled that once again, Oklahoma, on the federal level, is once again 100% red,” Bice said to cheers from supporters.
Carina Rosenbach, a member of Horn’s campaign team, said: “I think our campaign did everything that we could do. The district voted how it was going to vote.”
But Horn left the door open to a possible bid for election in the future, shouting “We’re not done yet!” at the end of her speech.
“When we fall down, we get back up,” Horn said. “Because the issues that face our communities, the issues that face our children, the issues that are critical to us- what we have been fighting for are still there.”
Gaylord News is a reporting project of the University of Oklahoma Gaylord College of Journalism and Mass Communication.