In a surprise move, Representative Dan Boren (D- OK2) announced that he would not be running for re-election in 2012 in a news conference earlier this week. The four-term Democrat represents a district that covers the eastern end of the Sooner state and stretches from the Kansas state line all the way south to the Texas state line. Boren cited the increased fundraising and campaigning demands associated with running for office as part of the reason behind stepping down and denied that he had immediate plans for run for either Senator or Governor.
Boren was one of the few 'Blue Dog' democrats able to retain their seats in the 2010 mid-term elections, which saw the Democrats lose the most seats in the House of Representatives since the FDR Administration. The Muskogee-based Democrat won re-election by a 56% margin in 2010, and declined to endorse Barack Obama in 2008. The only Democrat in Oklahoma's congressional delegation, Boren expressed his opposition to both cap and trade and 0bamacare as far back as 2009.
While the GOP had been making inroads into Oklahoma's 2nd Congressional district over the past decade, Boren was still expected to win should he have decided to run. Early indications are that the 2nd district will remain largely unmodified ahead of redistricting. Many observers feel that this means the GOP can pick up the district in the 2012 elections.
The Cook Political report had put the district into the 'Leaning Republican' category shortly after Boren's announcement. This time last year, the analyst had Oklahoma's 2nd District as 'Solid Democrat'