Constance Johnson

State Sen. Connie Johnson (D-Oklahoma City) and U.S. Rep. James Lankford (R-Okla. 5) during Tuesday night's U.S. Senate canddiate debate.
OStateTV

U.S. Rep. James Lankford (R-Okla. 5) and state Senator Constance Johnson (D-Oklahoma City) are both vying for the seat being vacated by U.S. Sen. Tom Coburn, who’s stepping down at the end of this year due to health problems. With three weeks left until Election Day, one of those candidates has a lot of catching up to do. 

StickWare / Flickr

Two combat veterans, a contentious state schools superintendent race, and Oklahoma's first African-American female Senate candidate face Oklahoma voters this week.

Early voting began Thursday and continued into the weekend, and the winners in Tuesday's runoff advance to November's election to square off against nominees who found out their fate just over two months ago after the June 24 primary.

KGOU News Director Ben Fenwick gathered University of Oklahoma political scientist Keith Gaddie, Oklahoma Watch political reporter M. Scott Carter, and eCapitol News Director Shawn Ashley to discuss some of the implications of what's left on the ballot.

Here are three contests they're keeping an eye on:

State Sen. Constance Johnson (D-Oklahoma City)
Provided / Oklahoma Senate

A Democratic state senator from Oklahoma City who has been a leading liberal voice in the Senate has announced her plans to run for the open U.S. Senate seat being vacated by Tom Coburn.

Flanked by family and friends, Sen. Connie Johnson announced her candidacy on Tuesday and said: "It's time for a change."

Provided / Reform OKC

A group of marijuana advocates filed an initiative petition Monday to decriminalize marijuana in Oklahoma City.

Reform OKC will start gathering signatures Friday.

State Senator Constance Johnson (D-Oklahoma City) has been an outspoken supporter of cannabis legalization at the state Capitol. She says Oklahoma City’s petition could pave the way for a larger, statewide effort to legalize the drug.

Meghan Blessing / KGOU

Emboldened by the legalization of marijuana in two states, hundreds of marijuana advocates held a rally at the state Capitol to call for fewer restrictions on pot smoking in Oklahoma.

Two separate pro-marijuana groups held events at the Capitol on Wednesday. One is supporting the use of medicinal marijuana, while the other is pushing for full-scale legalization of cannabis.

State Senator To Seek Democratic Party Post

May 10, 2013
Connie Johnson, Democratic Nominee For the U.S. Senate.
Oklahoma Senate

A state senator from Oklahoma City has announced her candidacy for chairwoman of the Oklahoma Democratic Party.

State Sen. Constance Johnson (D-Oklahoma City) said Friday she will seek the post during the party's annual convention on Saturday, May 18. Democratic campaign strategist Jed Green will seek the vice-chair position.

Current Democratic Party Chairman Wallace Collins also is seeking re-election to the post, along with current vice-chair Dana Orwig. Collins is a former Democratic state legislator from Norman.