Rinehart speaks out about losing election

Wednesday, July 30th 2008, 8:12 pm
By: News 9

By Amy Lester, NEWS 9

OKLAHOMA CITY -- After becoming entangled in controversy and criminal charges, Oklahoma County Commissioner Brent Rinehart was voted out of office Tuesday.

Rinehart finished third in Tuesday's Republican Primary, with 21 percent of the votes. Brian Maughan won the race with 47 percent and J.D. Johnson received 32 percent.

Rinehart didn't have a watch party. Instead, he went to the movies.

When the voting ended and the results started pouring in, Commissioner Brent Rinehart was watching the Dark Knight.

"It was the protector of the public that somehow through the system that was in place was presented to the public as being the bad person," Rinehart said.

Rinehart said he too is a victim of misinformation and forces working against him.

"I didn't come down here to make any friends," Rinehart said. "I came down here to reform county government. When that's in your heart, and it's what you do. You make some enemies."

Weeks before the election, Rinehart mailed out a 16 page cartoon book, which criticized top politicians and gained national attention for being anti-gay.

"I told them the truth of what I think about the homosexual agenda," Rinehart said." I told them the truth in regards to how district was ran and what I was given and what I did with it and where it's at now."

Despite his loss at the polls, Rinehart stood behind the book.

"It was still a lot of information that needed to be out there," Rinehart said.

Rinehart is scheduled to go on trial for several felony campaign corruption charges in the fall.

"It's just more mountains," Rinehart said. "I'll get to the top of them eventually, it's just going to be a long, hard road to go."

Rinehart will leave office in January, leaving politics for good.

"It's kind of liberating day in a way, but the sad part of it might be that everything I did for the past seven or eight years was for naught," Rinehart said.

Rinehart said once he's out of office, he'll go back to work at his heating and air company.

Rinehart also said he won't endorse anyone for District Two County Commissioner.

Opponents Brian Maughan and J.D. Johnston will face off in a Republican runoff election August 26th.

The winner of that runoff will go on to face Democrat Jim Dickinson in November.