Luke Holland is a Republican politician from Oklahoma who ran an unsuccessful campaign in 2022 to represent the state in the U.S. Senate. Although Holland did not win his bid for federal office, his background and connections within Oklahoma politics still make him an influential figure in the state.
Luke Holland’s Background
Early Life and Education
Luke Holland was born in Bartlesville, Oklahoma in 1986. He attended Bartlesville High School and after graduating in 2004, went on to the University of Oklahoma. In 2008, Holland completed his bachelor’s degree in political science and economics.
After finishing his studies at OU, Holland took a position as a staff assistant for U.S. Senator Jim Inhofe. He steadily rose through the ranks of Inhofe’s staff, ultimately becoming his chief of staff in 2017.
Work for Senator Jim Inhofe
As Inhofe’s top aide, Holland worked closely with the senator for over a decade. He advised Inhofe on policy issues, managed communications, and served as a liaison to other government officials and Inhofe’s constituents. This experience gave Holland significant exposure to the inner workings of Congress.
2022 Senate Campaign
Announcement and Rationale for Running
When Senator Inhofe announced he would retire at the end of his term in January 2023, Holland saw an opportunity. He resigned from Inhofe’s staff in February 2022 to launch his own campaign for the U.S. Senate special election to complete Inhofe’s unfinished term.
Holland felt his longtime service for Senator Inhofe made him the natural successor for the seat. He hoped Inhofe’s endorsement would give him an advantage over other candidates.
Policy Positions and Priorities
Holland aligned himself closely with Inhofe’s conservative policy positions. He promised to defend Christian values, rebuild the military, stand up to China, and oppose socialism. Holland also made fighting inflation a top priority.
As expected, Holland won the endorsement of his former boss, Senator Jim Inhofe. This was seen as a major boost to Holland’s chances in the Republican primary.
According to FEC filings, Holland raised over $850,000 for his Senate campaign as of May 2022. While a significant sum, he lagged behind other top-tier candidates in fundraising efforts.
In the June 2022 Republican primary for the special Senate election, Holland finished 4th place with about 11% of the vote. The crowded field of 13 candidates was led by Markwayne Mullin and T.W. Shannon, who advanced to a runoff election.
Despite Inhofe’s backing, Holland failed to gain enough traction to make the runoff and his Senate bid came to an end.
After the Campaign
Following his primary defeat, Luke Holland returned to private life. He continues to reside in Oklahoma with his wife and two children.
It remains to be seen if Holland will re-enter politics in the future. At just 36 years old in 2022, he likely has many potential opportunities ahead.
Impact on Oklahoma Politics
While he did not achieve his goal of becoming a U.S. Senator, Luke Holland still has influence within Oklahoma’s political circles. Through over a decade of serving Senator Inhofe, Holland formed many relationships with party leaders and activists in the state.
Holland’s future moves will be watched closely by those interested in the direction of the Oklahoma Republican Party. He is viewed by many as an emerging voice for the next generation of the state’s conservative leaders.
Q: Where is Luke Holland from originally?
A: Luke Holland was born in Bartlesville, Oklahoma in 1986. He grew up and attended high school in that city.
Q: What position did Luke Holland hold for Senator Jim Inhofe?
A: Luke Holland served as Senator Inhofe’s chief of staff from 2017 until his resignation in February 2022.
Q: How much money did Luke Holland raise for his 2022 Senate campaign?
A: According to FEC records, Holland raised over $850,000 for his Senate run as of May 2022.
Q: Who won the Republican primary that Luke Holland lost?
A: Markwayne Mullin and T.W. Shannon finished 1st and 2nd place in the primary, advancing to a runoff election which Mullin won.
Q: Will Luke Holland run for office again in the future?
A: It’s unclear if Holland has plans to seek elected office again. At 36 years old in 2022, he likely has many future possibilities in Oklahoma politics if he chooses.