Former bombing prosecutor considering gubernatorial bid

Wednesday, November 14th 2001, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) _ An attorney who helped prosecute Oklahoma City bomber Timothy McVeigh and co-conspirator Terry Nichols is considering whether he should run for governor next year.

Former U.S. Attorney Pat Ryan, a Democrat, said Tuesday he has received several telephone calls from supporters asking him to think about entering the race.

``I am considering it, but I don't know what I am going to do,'' Ryan told The Daily Oklahoman. ``I've got three kids and I want to think about them and a wife and a law partner.

``That's what I'll be doing in the next several weeks. I just want to give it careful consideration.''

Ryan said he will probably wait until after the holidays before announcing his decision.

He said running for political office never really occurred to him, but like many other Oklahomans, he believes he has ideas that can help the state.

Ryan, an attorney with Ryan and Whaley in Oklahoma City, helped gain the federal convictions of McVeigh and Nichols in 1997. After stepping down from his position in October 1999, Ryan has stayed out of the spotlight.

He was appointed to the post during the Clinton administration, but his confirmation languished until the April 19, 1995 explosion, which killed 168.

Three other candidates _ all Republicans _ have filed committees with the state Ethics Commission, making them official candidates, although two candidates have yet to announce their plans publicly.

U.S. Rep. Steve Largent, R-Okla.; Jerry Regier, Gov. Frank Keating's cabinet secretary for health and human services, and Jim Denny, a motivational speaker, have registered with the Ethics Commission.

Denny's two children were injured while they were in the second-floor day care center of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building when it was destroyed by a bomb.

Businessman Vince Orza, also a Democrat, has said he will file his committee in the next few weeks.