State House chooses new speaker

Monday, February 4th 2008, 10:04 pm
By: News 9

By Stacey Cameron, NEWS 9

House Republicans have a new leader, just in time for the legislative session.

After a two-hour, closed-door meeting inside the state Capitol, House Republicans stood together naming Chris Benge as their candidate for Speaker of the House.

It reportedly took two ballots to win the speaker's nomination. By Republican Party rule, the vote totals weren't released to the public. However, Republican lawmakers said Benge won by a single vote.

The first order of business for Oklahoma's new Republican speaker is fixing his own party. The Republican House caucus was fractured last week after losing two of its top leaders. Chris Benge promised to unify the House GOP.