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Democrats look to take advantage of social issues

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 OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) _ With efforts underway to place initiatives involving storm shelters and marijuana sales on this November's ballot, Oklahoma Democrats are wondering if the issues can benefit them this fall.

Supporters of the proposals are gathering signatures in an effort to put the issues before voters in the general election. A cockfighting initiative on the 2002 ballot drew large numbers of rural Democrats to the polls, and that was the year an underdog Democratic state senator from Shawnee named Brad Henry won the governor's race.

Whether this year's measures would help one candidate or party is unclear.

The Democratic nominee for governor, state Rep. Joe Dorman, has long been a champion of a $500 million bond issue to put more shelters in schools, but he's not embracing the pro-marijuana efforts.

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