Mike McCarville, legendary Oklahoma journalist and political commentator, passed away early this morning after a lengthy illness.
A legend in his field, McCarville had a storied media career, ranging from newspaper to television (KWTV) to radio (KOSU, KGWA, KTOK, NRANews), was Gov. Dewey Bartlett’s press secretary, and published The McCarville Report since 1980 (in print, then online beginning in 2006, I believe). Mike served in the Army from 1958 to 1961, was inducted into the Oklahoma Journalism Hall of Fame in 2013, and received the Ronald Reagan Lifetime Achievement Award from the Oklahoma Republican Party in 2015.
The godfather of Oklahoma political reporting, his print and later web writings have been a staple among state political movers and shakers for over three decades. His political blog inspired other bloggers, myself included, to begin writing. Called at one point the “gold standard of political blogs” in Oklahoma, and banned in Red China, McCarville’s blog was the go-to site for political news in Oklahoma. Since 2015, one of his goals has been to see civil asset forfeiture reform passed in Oklahoma, and Mike strongly pushed State Sen. Kyle Loveless’ efforts to do so
(his words from April 29, 2015 were: “This plague on our state and nation is my 2015-2016 pet peeve project. There is a chance we can get the Oklahoma law repealed if we raise enough hell about it. Law enforcement will protest that their budgets will be cut. That is no justification for this outrageous violation of rights. That drum beat you hear is me, out here marching around with my drum sticks.”)
Mike’s death signals the end of an era in Oklahoma political journalism and blogging. He was 76. Read the announcement post by his co-editor Jason Doyle here.
Reactions have been rolling in all day from elected officials, political activists, news figures, and friends. Here are a few…