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Chamber forum closed to public, press

Oklahoma City_An official of the state chamber says a Tulsa forum featuring Republican Sen. Jim Inhofe and Democratic Challenger Andrew Rice will be a closed event and no press coverage will be permitted.

Matt Robinson says chamber officials made an "an internal decision'' to close the event so Inhofe and Rice could engage in a frank discussion of business issues. Robinson is the chamber's Vice President for Small Business and Workforce Development.

In the past elections, chamber forums featuring gubernatorial and senatorial candidates have been open events.  Geri Prado, Rice's campaign manager, says she asked the chamber not to make it a closed event.

Josh Kivett, Inhofe campaign manager, says he requested limiting the forum to chamber members.

Copyright 2008 by the Associated Press. All rights reserved.

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