Dewey Bartlett Jr. wins re-election bid for mayor of Tulsa, beats Kathy Taylor

TULSA - Tulsans have voted.  Dewey Bartlett will keep the title of mayor.

With Bartlett leading the city's mayoral race for much of the night, candidate and former Mayor Kathy Taylor opted to concede just after 8 p.m.

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Bartlett spent much of his victory speech Tuesday thanking his supporters and offering hope for Tulsa's future.

"Let's go get 'em," Bartlett said before handing off the microphone. "One more term!"

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Spirits at Taylor's watch party were somber but the ex-mayor spoke encouragingly of the process.

"We may have lost the vote, but I believe Tulsa won with an honest and open discussion we had about Tulsa's future," Taylor said to a crowded Rusty Crane. "A few minutes ago, I phoned Mayor Bartlett and offered him my congratulations."

Taylor went on to say she plans to turn her attention to early childhood education in Tulsa through the Reading Partners Program.

The speeches concluded what turned out to be a contentious 8-month-long battle for Tulsa's mayor, surpassing the increasingly critical political ads now in vogue. In addition to both candidates reportedly receiving threats during their campaigns, recent news of a Taylor intern trailing Bartlett for nearly two weeks further muddied the waters come election day.

Taylor, who preceded Bartlett as mayor from 2006 to 2009, ran primarily on economic development plans and promised to focus on the city's crime rate and more efficient road construction, while Bartlett spoke regularly of fiscal responsibility and job growth throughout the campaign.

On Wednesday, Bartlett visited the KJRH studio and said he already has plans for his next term.

"We'll continue the same.  We've had great success working on job creation, economic development, our efforts at crime prevention and getting the bad guy is very good, so we'll continue that," said Bartlett.  "We'll also continue the collaborative effort that we've approached governors, getting everybody involved, giving everybody a chance at helping guide the government."

As for his opponent, Bartlett said Taylor was gracious in her concession.

"She offered me her congratulations, said she wanted to get together and said she'd be available for the future benefit of the city, and I said that'd be perfect."

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