At a candidate forum that featured Oklahomans who have voluntarily subjected themselves to run for governor and state superintendent of public instruction, there were very few reasons to put away the pillow. The candidates want to cut spending, make education a top priority, invent the perfect sausage, cure midlife crisis, yadda yadda yadda.
These events have become as routine as visiting the dentist: You sit and do nothing for a long time but leave very sore and groggy.
However, the forum held at Oklahoma City University did provide one spark. Actually, the spark was more like a dark moment.
While Lt. Gov. Jari Askins was speaking, the lights in the room suddenly went out. Quite an awkward situation for candidates and guests. It was the perfect opportunity for Attorney General Drew Edmondson, Askins' rival for the Democratic gubernatorial nomination, to suddenly make the race a one-man game. But when the lights slowly came back on, Askins and Edmondson were still sitting next to each other.
The moment did provide Askins with the best line of the night.
"As governor, I will keep the lights on."
Those words could come back to haunt Askins. The state is in the midst of one of the worst economic crises in state history. Agencies and lawmakers are looking at creative ways to keep government services afloat. That could include reducing the state Capitol electric bill, and what's one of the best ways to do that? Out go the lights.