OKLAHOMA CITY, OK – Bruce Lee Smith, a Republican, small business owner and longtime resident of House District 87, announced Tuesday that he would be a candidate for the open seat being vacated by state Rep. Jason Nelson, Oklahoma City-87 (R).
“Our state is in the middle of a major budget crisis, and I believe that experienced, hard working business people should get involved,” said Smith. “It is time to help our state recover from this crisis and develop sound fiscal policies to guarantee the future of our great state for our children and grandchildren. All Oklahomans should have the opportunity to achieve and prosper in life just as we and our forefathers had. I personally feel that it is time for me to get involved.”
Smith holds a Masters Degree of Civil Engineering from Oklahoma State University and is the President and CEO of Atlas Asphalt Products, Grace Trucking and Atlas Paving Company. The latter was founded by Smith’s father in 1956. After years of working as a consultant engineer, Smith joined his father in the family business and became President of Atlas Paving in 1988. Under his leadership, the companies have experienced significant growth and today employ roughly 100 Oklahomans.
“I have never run for political office and have no direct political experience, but I do have decades of experience in running a small family business, balancing budgets and controlling costs in a highly competitive business world,” said Smith. “If elected officials ran our state just a little bit more like a business, we would be in a much better position today. I hope to bring this perspective to the Capitol and work with others to get our state moving in the right direction again.”
Smith said pro-business policies that lead to job creation have to be a top priority.
“I have worked in the private sector long enough to realize that the government doesn’t create jobs, and in some instances, inhibits job development.” said Smith. “Excessive regulations and poor policies can be the killer of job creation. We can’t tax and spend our way to economic prosperity, and we certainly can’t punish job creators that we desperately need, for an economy caused by political shortsightedness.”
Smith has been married to his wife, Nancy, for 35 years. They have three grown children and three grandchildren, all of whom live in House District 87.
“I have been blessed with a wonderful wife and beautiful family. I want my children and grandchildren to live in a state with all the opportunities that they could ever dream of. I have passed on to them the conservative values I learned from my father and from growing up right here in District 87. I have come to a point in my life where I want to give back to our state to help it achieve a healthy budget and a bright future.”
The primary elections for Oklahoma House District 87 will be held along with other major elections on June 28. You can find more information about the candidates on FortySix News 2016 Elections page.