Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Cornett goes crude in attack ad on Stitt

GOP gubernatorial candidate Mick Cornett has gone borderline profane in his latest attack ad on fellow GOP candidate Kevin Stitt, transforming his opponent's name into a double entendre for profanity.

As if I didn't need any more reason on why to NOT vote for Mick Cornett. This sort of campaigning is absolutely shameful, and I hope the Cornett campaign crashes and burns like the Hindenburg.

There's a proper way to respond to attacks by one's opponent (Stitt is attacking Cornett on immigration and other issues), and there's a wrong way. Cornett chose the wrong way.

I don't find this type of junk to be "cute" or "funny", not one bit.

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

OCPA column: OU hire should respect Oklahomans

OU hire should respect Oklahomans
by Jonathan Small
President of the Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs (OCPA)

The University of Oklahoma is kicking off a national search for an associate vice president of university community.

“We can and must do more to ensure a diverse and inclusive community,” says OU president James Gallogly.

At a time when the cultural left believes it holds title to the phrases “university community” and “diversity,” here’s hoping this new hire will be different.

You’ll recall that Gallogly—obviously aware that Oklahoma taxpayers don’t place a high priority on government subsidies to higher education—went on the record early “to say to our legislature and our governor, we will be excellent stewards.” That’s smart.

After all, this is a state in which political-correctness foe Donald Trump got 65 percent of the vote. He won 77 of 77 counties. And yet last year, OU thought it was a good idea to bring to campus a radical leftist, Harry Belafonte, who had described the Trump presidency as “the Fourth Reich” and who has suggested that black Republicans such as Condoleezza Rice are race traitors or house slaves.

Indeed, many citizens aren’t aware how far left OU has drifted. Former president David Boren actually announced that “hate speech” (whatever that is) should be reported to the OU police department.

At a campus protest of Donald Trump, OU’s former diversity czar praised “the ability of people to overcome hate,” thereby impugning the motives of the vast majority of Oklahomans who voted for the current President.

OU now requires “diversity training” for new students. Political scientist Greg Forster called OU’s training “a horrifying recital of coercive tactics, clearly designed not to educate students about diversity (which would be valuable) so much as to manipulate, threaten, and control them so they don’t think the wrong things.”

Orwell would also be pleased with OU’s “bias response” hotline, which allows members of the university community to anonymously inform on their neighbors.

All this in addition to the tax-funded social-justice warriors marbled through the bureaucracy and the various grievance-studies departments.

Is it any wonder the Pew Research Center found last year that an astounding 65 percent of conservative Republicans believe “colleges and universities are having a negative effect on the way things are going in the country”?

OU’s new hire must cherish and defend students’ First Amendment rights to think and speak freely on campus.

He or she must never forget that the “university community” includes fraternities and the Baptist Student Union and ROTC and Turning Point USA and any number of other organizations.

He or she must celebrate diversity.

Jonathan Small serves as president of the Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs

Monday, August 13, 2018

Rep. Teague speaks out about deceptive group targeting conservative legislators

There's a shady "dark money" group out there that's targeting conservative Republican legislators, while under the name Conservative Alliance PAC. It's anything but conservative, and the DC-based group is using deceit and flat-out lies to try to amputate conservatism from the Oklahoma Legislature.

State Rep. Tess Teague (R-Choctaw) is one of the conservatives being targeted by the group during the runoff election; Teague recently posted the following rebuttal to their attacks:

State Rep. Tess Teague, R-Dist. 101
It appears as though an out-of-state organization is attacking myself and other conservatives in the Legislature, sending mail and unsolicited text messages to our constituents with the same message that we "voted against a teacher pay raise four times." It would almost be laughable if it wasn't so disrespectful to voters because this is intentional deceit. You're being lied to. So let's talk about facts. In 2017, the House passed HB1114, the teacher pay raise bill. It passed the House with a vote of 92-7 (five democrats and two republicans voted no), but the Senate refused to hear it. If they had, we would have successfully raised teacher pay a year before the walkout. It would have been the first time teacher pay had been raised since 2006. Since the Senate ultimately failed our bill, we tried again in 2018. This time we passed HB1023XX (teacher pay raise) and HB1026XX (support staff pay raise) and these bills also passed the Senate, were signed by the Governor and became law. This happened the week before the walkout.

I voted for all three of these pieces of legislation. What I didn't vote for were packages of massive taxation which included Step Up, A+, A++ and HB1010XX. I voted against all four of them. If out of state entities are saying I voted against teacher pay raises four times because I voted against taxation four times, I would say they're very confused. Since when is raising taxes synonymous with supporting education? It's not. I voted in favor of every single teacher pay raise and yet people who want conservatives out of the House will try to convince you that I'm anti-education. I voted for every single teacher pay raise but the OEA has targeted my district for a "day of action" - I vote in support of teachers but the OEA doesn't care about that, they have a vested interest in a different agenda of raising taxes and getting rid of conservatives. The argument I've faced is that the tax raises were necessary to pay for the teacher pay raise - that's also not true. Even our House leadership has come out and said that we wound up having such a surplus that we could have paid for the raises without new or increased taxation. This has been what conservatives have been saying since day one. I'm thankful for an economy on the rise and there's been a lot of work put into making sure our state pulled itself out of the deficit we were in. On the national level, we finally have a president committed to growing the economy as evidenced by our 4.1% GDP growth – the former administration only got to 1.6%. I'm proud of the Legislature for righting our financial ship here at home and it is exciting to see Oklahoma's thriving economy. But I am absolutely heartbroken that the rhetoric of "raising taxes is the only way to do it" won during session and that those of us with the foresight to see past the politics are being demonized for doing the right thing: supporting education AND protecting taxpayer's wallet.

On August 25 when the OEA targets my district with their "day of action" I need your help. Conservatives, this is our day of action. I won't let my voters be lied to. Stand with me and say "enough is enough" - these kind of tactics won't win over our country and they won't win over our state. Let me know if you'd like to join my group of volunteers from now until August 28, every little bit helps.

Music Monday: Ashokan Farewell

This week's Music Monday is Ashokan Farewell, composed in 1982 by American folk musician Jay Ungar. The song achieved fame through prominent usage in Ken Burns' PBS documentary miniseries The Civil War.


See below for all previous Music Monday posts. Do you have a song you'd like to suggest for a future Music Monday? Email me at

August 6, 2018: How the West Was Won
July 23rd, 2018: I Just Can't Wait to Be King
July 16th, 2018: 'Jupiter' from 'The Planets'
July 9th, 2018: Hail to the Spirit of Liberty
July 2nd, 2018: Turn The Tide
June 25th, 2018: Good Guys Win
June 18th, 2018: Watching You
June 11th, 2018: Adoration
June 4th, 2018: March from 'A Moorside Suite'
May 28th, 2018: Taps
May 21st, 2018: Listz's La Campanella
May 14th, 2018: Handful of Weeds
May 7th, 2018: Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing
April 30th, 2018: Polonaise in A-flat major, Op. 53 ("Heroic")
April 23rd, 2018: Blow Ye The Trumpet
April 16th, 2018: Asturias (Leyenda)
April 9th, 2018: Old Mountain Dew
April 2nd, 2018: His Life For Mine
March 19th, 2018: See, the Conqu'ring Hero Comes!
March 12th, 2018: Choctaw Nation
March 5th, 2018: Hark, I Hear The Harps Eternal
February 19th, 2018: The Olympic Spirit
February 12th, 2018: Olympic Fanfare and Theme
January 29th, 2018: Hail to the Chief
January 23rd, 2018: Waltz in A-Flat Major, Op. 39 No. 15
January 15th, 2018: Bleed The Same
January 8th, 2018: Saint-Saëns' Symphony No.3 'Organ' (Maestoso)
December 25th, 2017: God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen
December 18th, 2017: I Saw Three Ships (The Piano Guys)
December 11th, 2017:Who Is He In Yonder Stall
December 4th, 2017: Carol of the Bells (Mannheim Steamroller)
November 27th, 2017: Joy to the World!
November 20th, 2017: We Gather Together
November 13th, 2017: Mansions of the Lord
November 6th, 2017: Träumerei
October 30th: A Mighty Fortress Is Our God
October 23rd, 2017: In Christ Alone
October 16th, 2017: When I'm Knee Deep In Bluegrass
October 9th, 2017: I Pledge Allegiance to the Lamb
October 2nd, 2017: Piano Concerto No. 2 in B-flat major (Brahms)
September 25th, 2017: Beethoven's Sonata No. 8 in C minor ('Pathétique')
September 11th, 2017: Have You Forgotten?
September 4th, 2017: Bach's Double Violin Concerto
August 28th, 2017: Noah Found Grace In The Eyes Of The Lord
August 21st, 2017: The Heavens Are Telling The Glory of God
August 14th, 2017: Beethoven's 5th Symphony
August 7th, 2017: 'Lift High The Name Of Jesus' medley
July 31st, 2017: Fanfare for the Common Man
July 24th, 2017: Variations on 'Happy Birthday'
July 10th, 2017: Summer (Presto) from Vivaldi's Four Seasons
July 3rd, 2017: Freelance Fireworks Hall of Fame
June 26th, 2017: Praise to the Lord, the Almighty
June 19th, 2017: A Christian Home
June 12th, 2017: Ol' Man River
June 5th, 2017: Choctaw Cowboy
May 29th, 2017: Armed Forces Salute
May 22nd, 2017: Double Bass Concerto No.2 in B minor
May 15th, 2017: Pomp and Circumstance March No. 1 in D major
May 8th, 2017: The Army Goes Rolling Along
April 17th, 2017: He Is Alive
April 10th, 2017: Surely He Hath Borne/And With His Stripes/All We Like Sheep
April 3rd, 2017: Here Comes Carolina
March 27th, 2017: 'Spring' from Vivaldi's 'Four Seasons'
March 20th, 2017: Symphony No. 5 ("Reformation") Finale
March 13th, 2017: The Pigeon on the Gate
March 6th, 2017: Finlandia
February 27th, 2017: When I Can Read My Title Clear
February 20th, 2017: William Tell Overture - Finale
February 13th, 2017: 'Romance' from 'The Gadfly'
February 6th, 2017: White Winter Hymnal
January 30th, 2017: Hail, Columbia
January 23rd, 2017: Hail to the Chief
January 16th, 2017: Come, Ye Sinners, Poor and Needy
January 2nd, 2017: Auld Lang Syne
December 26th, 2016: Hark! The Herald Angels Sing
December 19th, 2016: I Wonder as I Wander
December 12th, 2016: O Come, O Come, Emmanuel
December 5th, 2016: A Christmas Festival
November 28th, 2016: God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen
November 21st: Beethoven's 'Hymn of Thanksgiving'
November 14th: Hymn to the Fallen
November 7th: This World Is Not My Home
October 31st, 2016: A Mighty Fortress Is Our God
October 24th, 2016: 'Mars', from 'The Planets'
October 17th, 2016: My Shepherd Will Supply My Need
October 10th, 2016: Spain
October 3rd, 2016: International Harvester
September 26th, 2016: 'The Imperial March' from Star Wars
September 19th, 2016: Awake the Trumpet's Lofty Sound
September 12th, 2016: Before the Throne of God Above
September 5th, 2016: The Hunt
August 29th, 2016: Liberty
August 22nd, 2016: Summon the Heroes
August 15th, 2016: Bugler's Dream
August 8th, 2016: Olympic Fanfare and Theme
August 1st, 2016: 'Prelude' and 'Parade of the Charioteers' from Ben-Hur
July 25th, 2016: How The West Was Won
July 18th, 2016: Six Studies in English Folk Song
July 11th, 2016: From Everlasting To Everlasting
July 4th, 2016: The Stars and Stripes Forever
June 27th, 2016: Rule, Britannia!
June 20st, 2016: Bugler's Holiday
June 13th, 2016: Ride of the Valkyries
June 6th, 2016: Piano Concerto in A Minor, Op. 54, Allegro Vivace
May 30th, 2016: Armed Forces Salute
May 23rd, 2016: Paid in Full (Through Jesus, Amen)
May 16th, 2016: Overture from 'Carmen'
May 9th, 2016: L'Arlesienne Suite No. 1 - Prelude
May 2nd, 2016: My God Is a Rock
April 25th, 2016: Toccata and Fugue in D Minor
April 18th, 2016: Paganini's Caprice No. 24 in A Minor
April 11th, 2016: Fantasia on a 17th Century Tune
April 4th, 2016: Hark The Sound/I'm a Tarheel Born
March 28th, 2016: Rustle of Spring
March 21st, 2016: 'Ode to Joy' sung by a 10,000-voice choir
March 14th, 2016: Hard Times Come Again No More
March 7th, 2016: 'The Suite' from Downton Abbey
February 29th, 2016: Moonlight Sonata
February 22nd, 2016: Liebestraum No. 3
February 15th, 2016: Help Is On The Way
February 8th, 2016: God of Grace and God of Glory
February 1st, 2016: 'My Story'
January 25th, 2016: Israeli Concertino
January 18th, 2016: What Grace is Mine
January 11th, 2016: "Meditation" from Thaïs
January 4th, 2016: Praeludium and Allegro
December 28th, 2015: Appalachian Carol
December 21st, 2015: God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen
December 14th, 2015: O Holy Night
December 7th, 2015: Christmas Fantasy
November 23rd, 2015: Simple Gifts
November 16th, 2015: Preacher Tell Me Like It Is
November 9th, 2015: Armed Forces Salute
November 2nd, 2015: Amazing Grace
October 26th, 2015: The Harmonious Blacksmith
October 19th, 2015: Liberty Fanfare
October 12th, 2015: The Majesty and Glory of Your Name
October 5th, 2015: Elgar's 'Enigma' Finale
September 28th, 2015: Stayed on Jesus
September 21st, 2015: Great Gate of Kiev
September 14th, 2015: Nearer, My God, To Thee

Hern touts poll with him leading Harris 50%-34%

Poll Shows Kevin Hern Leading Harris by 16-Points in CD1 Republican Primary

Tulsa, OK – The Kevin Hern Campaign released the following statement regarding a new poll showing Kevin Hern leads Tim Harris in a survey of Oklahoma 1st Congressional District GOP primary voters by double digits.

“These poll results show the momentum our campaign has gained since the June election including our powerful grassroots operation,” said Campaign Manager Johnny Moyer. “While we are pleased with these numbers, our campaign will only continue to spread Kevin Hern’s conservative message in support of President Trump and against more spending from career politicians in Washington.”

The Tarrance Group poll revealed that Hern's positive momentum in the recent weeks finding Kevin Hern with a 16-point lead (50%-34%) over Tim Harris in the upcoming Republican primary run-off election.  In addition, Hern holds a 9-point lead (29%-20%) among voters who have made a definite choice on the ballot. In a further sign of the positive image Hern has with GOP run-off voters, fully 61% of voters who have an impression of Hern think of him as a conservative.  In contrast, just 43% of voters with an impression of Harris think of him as a conservative.

As the campaign enters this final stretch, Kevin Hern is well positioned to win this GOP primary run-off election.  He has a double-digit lead on the ballot. This impressive lead is driven by his strongly favorable image with voters that includes being well defined as a conservative who will be a strong ally for President Trump.

Responses to this survey were gathered August 7-9, 2018. All respondents interviewed in this study were part of a fully representative sample of N=301 registered likely Republican primary run-off voters.

Stitt surpasses $1M raised during runoff


TULSA, Oklahoma (August 13, 2018) – The Kevin Stitt for Governor campaign today announced it has raised more than $1 million in individual donations in the Republican primary runoff, with more than a quarter of the support flooding in over the past few days.

“I am honored by the strong outpouring of support from Oklahomans across the state who are ready for us to be Top Ten and know only a conservative outsider can lead us there,” said Kevin Stitt. “Over the course of this campaign, we have held more than 100 town hall meetings, listening to Oklahomans and building a platform to deliver transparency and accountability to state government. It is time we apply business practices that enforce efficiency, root out waste, and responsibly deliver core services such as education and infrastructure.”

To date, the campaign has raised more than $3 million from more than 2,000 contributors. As a personal commitment to work hand-in-hand with Oklahomans, Kevin Stitt matches donations and has contributed more than $3 million to the campaign.

Thursday, August 09, 2018

Fallin places 'Vision Fund' question on November ballot

Governor Mary Fallin Places Vision Fund Question on November Ballot
It joins four other measures that voters will be asked to consider

OKLAHOMA CITY – Governor Mary Fallin today signed an executive proclamation placing on the Nov. 6 general election ballot a measure that would create the Oklahoma Vision Fund to support the operation of state government.

State Question (SQ) 800, if approved by a majority of voters, would consist of annual deposits of at least 5 percent of the total collections of the gross production tax.

No more than 5 percent of the Vision Fund could be used for service payments due on bonds or other financing instruments. Four percent of the average annual principal balance of the endowment fund could be transferred to the General Revenue Fund each year.

Lawmakers this year approved Senate Joint Resolution 35, which supporters said would better prepare for the cyclical nature of Oklahoma’s energy economy and would help keep core services funded in downturns.

The deadline for the governor to sign paperwork for state questions to be placed on the Nov. 6 general election ballot is Aug. 27.

Fallin earlier placed three other referendums approved by legislators on the ballot, and signed paperwork authorizing one initiative petition measure to be on the November ballot.

  • SQ 793 (initiative petition) would amend the state constitution by allowing optometrists or opticians to practice in retail establishments, and would allow the Legislature to regulate them.
  • SQ 794 (legislative referendum) would provide certain rights for crime victims, such as expanding the court proceedings at which victims have the right to be heard and being notified of the defendant’s release or escape from custody.
  • SQ 798 (legislative referendum) would establish a joint ticket for the top two statewide offices, like candidates for U.S. president and vice-president. If voters approve the question on the Nov. 6 general election, it wouldn't take effect until 2026.
  • SQ 801 (legislative referendum) would give local school boards the flexibility and options to use existing property tax funds for use in the classroom, such as teacher pay and textbooks, without raising taxes.

The deadline for the governor to sign paperwork for state questions to be placed on the Nov. 6 general election ballot is Aug. 27.

Stitt announces farmer and rancher endorsements


OKLAHOMA CITY (August 9, 2018) — The Stitt for Governor campaign today announced that more than 80 farmers and ranchers across the state have endorsed Kevin Stitt in his campaign to become the next governor of Oklahoma.

“I am honored to have the strong and diverse support of leaders from our hard-working agriculture community,” said Stitt. “Agriculture is one of Oklahoma’s economic mainstays, with our farmers and ranchers producing food and fiber for not only our state but also millions of people worldwide. Because our agriculture economy is so diverse, it is imperative that all facets of the industry have a seat at the table. As governor, I will seek advice from and fight to protect the agriculturists, farmers, and ranchers that play a vital role in driving economic opportunity and job growth in Oklahoma.”

Farmers and ranchers endorsing Stitt span across 37 different counties and include:

Alan Jett of Beaver County said, “As a 4th generation farmer from the panhandle, I am excited to endorse Kevin Stitt for Governor of Oklahoma. His message has been clear on his intention to serve as the Governor for all 4 million Oklahomans. He is a businessman that understands the issues agriculture faces in today’s society and will serve us all well.”

Brent Bolen of McCurtain County said, “Mr. Stitt, is certainly surrounding himself with the right folks for council with regards to agriculture and rural Oklahoma issues. I believe he will bring fair and proper guidance to our state because of his leadership skills developed during his years of doing business in the private sector. Kevin Stitt is the candidate rural Oklahoma needs.

Tammi Didlot, past president of Oklahoma and American National CattleWomen and current CFO for American National CattleWomen, said, “As a business owner and rancher, it is refreshing to see someone like Kevin Stitt in the race. I appreciate someone willing to run government like a business with transparency. His work mantra is similar to mine, ‘don’t ask others to do anything you wouldn’t do!’”

Eric & Tracie Chapman Family of Johnston County said, “This year’s Governor race is as important as ever. We must elect a Governor that represents family values, supports Oklahoma’s farmers and ranchers, and that will lead our state forward. We are proud to endorse Kevin Stitt for Governor of Oklahoma.”

Stitt is dedicated to working with the agriculture community in Oklahoma to achieve a vision of making Oklahoma a Top Ten State.

For a complete list of Farmers and Ranchers for Stitt, visit:

Pinnell: "We can’t keep playing musical chairs"

Here's a new ad from Lieutenant Governor candidate Matt Pinnell:

In social media posts about the ad, Pinnell had this to say: "We can’t keep playing musical chairs with the same career politicians and expect different results. I’m a proven conservative leader with the right experience to lead. As Lt. Governor, I’ll recruit businesses and tourism to strengthen our state’s economy."

Tuesday, August 07, 2018

National group sees SQ 793 as improving access to quality eye care

National group sees SQ 793 as improving access to quality eye care

Energeyes, a national nonprofit association representing optometrists who choose to practice in a corporate-affiliated environment, is taking an interest in the SQ 793's effort to provide all Oklahomans access to convenient, affordable and quality eye care.

Oklahoma is one of only three states prohibiting retailers from providing eye care services, whose effect keeps prices artificially high and restricts access to affordable, quality eye care for those who need it most, particularly low-income families, children and senior citizens. SQ 793 would simply put Oklahoma patients first by offering them more access to eye care similar to services currently enjoyed by high patient satisfaction in 47 states.   

This November, Oklahomans have the opportunity to vote for modern vision care laws offering patients greater access to eye care by allowing licensed optometrists to practice in retail settings. This opportunity would provide numerous benefits to Oklahoma patients, including the ability for Oklahoma patients to receive eye care in a retail setting, while experiencing the same high standards and quality of care they receive in an independent optometrist’s office. SQ 793 will require optometrists practicing in retail settings to have exactly the same qualifications as those currently practicing throughout Oklahoma. These doctors will have OCTs, retinal cameras and additional advanced instrumentation to ensure the best care for Oklahoma patients.

Attached with the above press release, Energeyes also included this letter that they sent to Joel Robison, Executive Director for the Oklahoma Association of Optometric Physicians: