Thursday, June 30, 2016

Election Results Map: 2nd District GOP Primary

(click image to view larger)

For the latest installment in my Election Results Maps series, here's the 2nd Congressional District Republican primary. Markwayne Mullin won every county except Hughes County, and was held under 56.5% in 6 other counties (Bryan, Choctaw, Johnston, Muskogee, Ottawa and Rogers).

Mullin's best county was Adair County, where he received 85.6% of the vote. He got over 70% in ten counties.

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Primary Results: despite historic amount of candidates, few upsets


Votes are still being counted in from the primary election, but things have shaped up enough (or finished in some races) to see the final results. Despite a historic amount of candidates, there have been few upsets.

All five incumbent congressmen defeated their primary challengers. The closest race was in the 2nd District, where Markwayne Mullin leads Jarrin Jackson 63.3% to 36.7%.

So far, Jim Bridenstine received the highest total at 81.94%, despite having two opponents (Lucas, Mullin and Russell each had only one), and despite Tom Atkinson spending nearly as much or even more than Bridenstine did. In contrast, Mullin outspent Jackson at least 10-1 in his much smaller victory.

Finishing out the congressional primaries, Lucas got 78.3%, Cole got 71.5%, and Russell currently has 80.95%. On the Democratic side, Joshua Harris-Till is the 2nd District nominee, Christina Owen is the 4th District nominee, and former nominees Tom Guild and Al McAffrey are in a runoff in the 5th District (no candidate received more than 38% of the vote in that primary).

Of interest to Muskogee County, Dewayne Pemberton (R) and Jack Reavis (D) defeated their opponents in the Senate District 9 primaries. In House District 13, Avery Frix won a three-way GOP primary, and will face Democrat Wayne Herriman. Incumbent sheriff Charles Pearson lost the Democratic primary to Rob Frazier 52.62% to 47.38%; Frazier will face Republican Roger Posey in November.

The only incumbent state senator to be losing is Republican Corey Brooks (SD43), who is trailing with 48.08% and 49 of 54 precincts reporting.

There was slightly more drama in the state house, but still not much as far as upsets go, given how many contested primaries there were this time.

State Rep. Dennis Johnson (R-HD50) lost his reelection bid to Marcus McEntire 57.22% to 42.78%. Rep. Ken Walker (R-HD70) is currently losing with 46.21%, but only 13 of 22 precincts have reported. Rep. Charles Ortega (R-HD52) won with 50.9%. Rep. Donnie Condit (D-HD18) won with 50.51%. All other races with incumbents were won with large margins.

G.T. Bynum is beating Dewey Bartlett for Tulsa mayor 56.17% to 38.07% (148 of 185 precincts reporting).

See the federal and legislative results here, or go here for county-level results.

Oklahoma Primary is today - vote!


Today is the Oklahoma primary election. If you don't know where you vote, use this link from the State Election Board to find out. Here are my recommendations for a few of the Republican races. Bold/links denote races I'm more familiar with or confident with.

U.S. Congress, District 1: Jim Bridenstine
U.S. Congress, District 2: Jarrin Jackson
U.S. Congress, District 4: James Taylor
State Senate District 3: Russell Turner
State Senate District 9: Dewayne Pemberton
State Senate District 13: Jet McCoy
State Senate District 25: Joe Newhouse
State Senate District 29: Julie Daniels
State Senate District 33: Nathan Dahm
State Senate District 39: Amanda Teegarden
State Senate District 41: Paul Blair
State Senate District 45: Kyle Loveless
State House District 4: Bob Ed Culver
State House District 8: Carl Parson
State House District 67: Scott McEachin
Tulsa County Sheriff: Luke Sherman
Wagoner County Clerk: Lori Hendricks

Monday, June 27, 2016

Gary Jones endorses Pemberton for SD9

State Auditor Gary Jones has endorsed Senate District 9 candidate Dewayne Pemberton.


"State Auditor Gary Jones, Oklahoma's no nonsense watchdog, supports Dewayne Pemberton for State Senator. We need more citizen legislators that bring common sense and life experiences to the Oklahoma State Senate." - Gary Jones, State Auditor


For recent news on the SD9 race, click here.

Ted Cruz endorses Carl Parson for HD8

Texas Senator and former presidential candidate Ted Cruz has waded into the four-man Republican primary in House District 8, and endorsed candidate Carl Parson.



House District 8 is currently held by term-limited Democrat Ben Sherrer. HD8 (map) covers portions of Mayes, Rogers and Wagoner counties, including the towns of Pryor, Choteau, Locust Grove, and Inola.

Carl Parson is running against Republicans Tom Gann, Steven Dill, Rick Kibbe, and Democrat Darrell Moore.

Music Monday: Rule, Britannia!

In honor of the 'Brexit', this week's Music Monday is Rule, Britannia!, one of the most prominent British patriotic songs. This performance took place on the last night of the BBC Proms in 2012, a summer series of classical concerts that started in 1895.

Enjoy!



Click to go below the page break to see all previous Music Monday posts. Do you have a song you'd like to submit for a future Music Monday? Email me at JamisonFaught@MuskogeePolitico.com.

LYRICS

When Britain first, at heaven's command,
Arose from out the azure main,
This was the charter of the land,
And Guardian Angels sang this strain:

Chorus: Rule, Britannia! Britannia, rule the waves!
Britons never, never, never shall be slaves.

The nations not so blest as thee
Must, in their turn, to tyrants fall,
While thou shalt flourish great and free:
The dread and envy of them all.

(Chorus)

Still more majestic shalt thou rise,
More dreadful from each foreign stroke,
As the loud blast that tears the skies
Serves but to root thy native oak.

(Chorus)

Thee haughty tyrants ne'er shall tame;
All their attempts to bend thee down
Will but arouse thy generous flame,
But work their woe and thy renown.

(Chorus)

To thee belongs the rural reign;
Thy cities shall with commerce shine;
All thine shall be the subject main,
And every shore it circles, thine.

(Chorus)

The Muses, still with freedom found,
Shall to thy happy coasts repair.
Blest isle! with matchless beauty crowned,
And manly hearts to guard the fair.

(Chorus)

Rule, Britannia! Britannia, rule the waves!
Britons never, never, never shall be slaves.

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Faught endorses Pemberton in SD9, Stevens in HD13


In the race for House District 13 (map), State Rep. George Faught (R-Muskogee) has endorsed Al Stevens in the Republican primary:

"It is my privilege to endorse Al Stevens for State Representative for House District 13. I have known Al for many years in both a personal and professional level. Al has vast business experience working in the community through his employment with OG&E and his years of service on numerous boards and committees in our local community. Al brings both the experience and common sense ideas that are needed in promoting economic development and accountability to our state government. He and his wife of more than 43 years, Sandy, a former public school teacher, create a great partnership and will serve this community well. Join with me and support a qualified leader - Al Stevens for State Representative in House District 13."

Stevens is facing off against Republicans Avery Frix and Leah Todd in the primary on Tuesday. The Republican nominee will face Democrat Wayne Herriman in the general election. The seat is currently held by Rep. Jerry McPeak (D-Warner), who is term-limited.

In the race for Senate District 9 (map), State Rep. George Faught has endorsed Dewayne Pemberton in the Republican primary:

"It is an honor for me to endorse Dewayne Pemberton for State Senate District 9. Dewayne has unique qualifications that make him the right choice to be your next Senator. With more than 30 years experience in Education as a former teacher, coach and high school administrator, Dewayne knows what needs to be done to help our schools succeed. Our next Senator needs to have the life experience and wisdom that comes with age, along with the proven conservative background to solve the many tough decisions facing Oklahoma. Dewayne will fight for the values of traditional marriage and protecting the unborn and he will be a champion of Education. He understands the role of government and will work to unleash the free enterprise system to create quality jobs and a prosperous economy. It is without hesitation that today I ask you to join me in electing Dewayne Pemberton as our next State Senator."

Pemberton is aiming to beat John Tyler Hammons in the GOP primary. The Republican nominee will face whichever of the three Democrat candidates emerge from their primary: Stephen Highers, Jack Reavis, or John Uzzo. This seat is currently held by Sen. Earl Garrison (D-Muskogee), who is also term-limited.

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Charlie Meadows' 2016 primary picks



by Charlie Meadows (former president of OCPAC)

It has become a tradition for me to publish my political tip sheet before important elections.  These are my opinions of who I believe ought to win, not necessarily who I believe will win.  This is a very important election cycle as we have the largest number of open seats since 2004, the first year term limits were fully implemented.

I will be a little more limited this year as I simply have not done the volume of research I have done in the past.  Some folks may have information to which I am not privy and therefore have a different opinion, which is just fine.  I will do the Oklahoma Legislature first, then the congressional seats.

Oklahoma Senate

SD 1  (Vinita, Jay, Afton, etc.)  YOUR CHOICE - Of the three Republican candidates running, none of them came to OCPAC for our grueling interview process.

SD 3  (Stillwell, Grove, Beggs, etc.)  WAYNE SHAW - Senator Shaw is the incumbent with a lifetime average of 70% on the Conservative Index, which is not great, but acceptable to OCPAC.

SD 9  (Muskogee, Tahlequah, etc.)  YOUR CHOICE - I could not endorse either of these candidates as one is arrogant and full of selfish ambition, while the other is one of the radical government education candidates wanting to dump tons of additional taxes down the deep, dark hole of education without the reforms necessary to produce good quality education.

SD 12  (Sapulpa, Bristow, Oilton, etc.)  YOUR CHOICE - Rep. Leewright scored a paltry 53% on the 2015 Conservative Index.  I know nothing about the other candidate.

SD 13  (Ada, Pauls Valley, etc.)  YOUR CHOICE - None of the three candidates came to OCPAC for our interview process.  I would think Jet McCoy (of rodeo and TV fame) would have the best shot at winning.  McCortney is one of the radical government school candidates.  I know nothing about Mr. Howard.

SD 15  (Norman, Moore)  ROB STANDRIDGE - Senator Standridge has a 75% lifetime average on the Conservative Index.  He is one of the better Republican Senators and should be re-elected.

SD 17  (Shawnee, Choctaw, Luther, etc.)  BROOKE McGOWAN - OCPAC endorsed Brooke McGowan after our interview process.  Good lawmakers are people who will read and attend meetings and seminars to educate themselves.  As an example Brooke and her husband attended a seminar hosted by Pastor Paul Blair about a year and a half ago on the Islamic agenda to take over America.  Brooke and Paul already have a working relationship, and I believe they will work well together in the Senate.  On the other hand, Senator Sharp was OCPAC’s RINO (Republican In Name Only) award winner last year.  His score of 50% on the Conservative Index ranked him almost at the bottom—thirty-eight out of forty.  I warned people four years ago that Sharp was not a conservative, but not enough voters listened, and he beat the conservative candidate by less than one hundred votes in the primary run-off.  If you live in the district, please vote for Brooke McGowan to improve the quality of the Senate.

SD 19  (Enid area)  GREG INGLE - OCPAC endorsed Greg Ingle for the seat.  I also met with Dr. Vanhooser, one of the other strong candidates in the race.  Should he win the primary, I think he could also make a fine lawmaker and provide a second opinion to the liberal Dr. Yen in the Senate.

SD 21  (Stillwater)  YOUR CHOICE - I know nothing about the two Republicans, but it would be hard for either of them to be much worse than the retiring Sen. Halligan who turned out to be a disaster.

SD 23  (Blanchard, Tuttle, Chickasha, etc.)  KEVIN CROW - Crow received OCPAC’s endorsement and is an inspiring history professor at the university in Chickasha.  While he was weak on educational choice, he is very principled and will not be a go-along-to-get-along Republican if elected.  The Senate needs an independent personality like Kevin.  He is already well educated on many of the issues faced by the members of the legislature.

SD 25  (Bixby, Broken Arrow, Jenks, etc.)  JOE NEWHOUSE – Joe is a former staffer of Congressman Bridenstine.  As a navy pilot, Newhouse actually has a few more carrier landings than Bridenstine who has about 180.  I believe Mr. Newhouse does not yet have a fully developed conservative ideology, but I found him very open and teachable.

SD 27  (Woodward, Moreland, and the panhandle)  YOUR CHOICE - Sen. Marlatt has a 62% lifetime Conservative Index score, which is only a couple of points above our RINO nominee threshold.  I know nothing of his challenger.

SD 29  (Bartlesville area)  YOUR CHOICE - Oliver is the radical government education candidate, and I know nothing about Julie Daniels.

SD 31  (Duncan, Elgin, Addington, Cash area)  YOUR CHOICE - Hasenbeck and Kidd are the radical government education candidates, and I know nothing about Mr. Rodriguez.

SD 33  (Broken Arrow area)  NATHAN DAHM - Sen. Dahm was OCPAC’s Senator of the Year for 2015 and was previously our Freshman of the Year.  With a lifetime average of 98% on the Conservative Index, he may be the finest in the Senate.  You can bet the two challengers are liberal compared to Nathan Dahm.

SD 37  (Sand Springs, Tulsa area)  YOUR CHOICE - Senator Newberry scored a 53% on the Conservative Index this year and has a 64% lifetime average.  Mr. Jackson is a radical government education candidate, and Mrs. Patterson got a late start and lacks resources.

SD 39  (East Tulsa)  AMANDA TEEGARDEN - As one of the founders and executive director of OK-SAFE (Oklahomans for Sovereignty and Free Enterprise), Amanda is supremely prepared to be one of the finest senators that could be elected.  She is also one of the finest researchers I have ever met.  She is head and shoulders above the other candidates and was endorsed by OCPAC.

SD 41  (Central & East Edmond)  PAUL BLAIR - This is probably the most important Senate race in the state for this election cycle.  Paul has a well-developed conservative ideology, natural leadership skills, and strong Christian character.  Mr. Pugh is probably a nice fellow, but an interview in the Edmond Sun reveals he would care more about going along with establishment Republican leadership than being an independent lawmaker representing the people of the district.  Mr. Tallent is not a conservative, but a progressive Republican.

SD 43  (Purcell, Washington, Duncan area)  COREY BROOKS - While Senator Brooks’s lifetime average of 67% on the Conservative Index leaves a lot to be desired, his opponent, Mr. Scott, is one of the radical government education candidates.

SD 45  (Southwest OKC & Mustang)  KYLE LOVELESS - Senator Loveless scored an acceptable 80% on the Conservative Index this year.  His work to bring justice to asset forfeiture laws is extremely valuable, and we must keep him in office to continue that fight.

Oklahoma House of Representatives

While we have a good crop of Senate candidates, I was disappointed with the caliber of the House candidates, at least of the ones that came to OCPAC.  Many did not attend; therefore, I will only address races I know something about.  In addition, while there will be a lot of Republican candidates on the ballot in November against Democrats, many of the primaries were not contested.

HD 27  (Tecumseh, Wanette, Norman area)  Representative Cockroft has a 78% lifetime average on the Conservative Index and is one of the most conservative members of the legislature.

HD 36  (Pawhuska, Hominy, Skiatook area)  SEAN ROBERTS - Representative Roberts has a lifetime Conservative Index score of 76%, which is good enough to warrant his re-election.

HD 39  (Northwest Edmond)  MICHAEL BUOY - While I was disappointed that Mr. Buoy did not attend our interview process, he has attended several other meetings, as well as the Patriot Pastors luncheons.  I know he has been given important materials to read to fully develop a strong conservative ideology.

HD 43 (Yukon area)  JOHN PAUL JORDAN - Representative Jordan scored 83% his first year in office.  The other two primary candidates are very liberal compared to John Paul.

HD 50 (Duncan, Comanche area)  DENNIS JOHNSON - Rep. Johnson has a lifetime average on the Conservative Index of 78%, so should be re-elected.

HD 58 (Meno, Cherokee, Woodard area)  LUKE DOANE - OCPAC endorsed Mr. Doane after he really impressed our members.  He is very sharp and has a conservative ideology far more developed than most candidates.  His up-side is huge!

HD 60 (Hinton, El Reno, western Yukon area) - YOUR CHOICE - Two of the three candidates, both teachers, came to OCPAC for our interview process.  Neither of the candidates had raised much financial support, and each had ideological strengths and weaknesses.  OCPAC did not endorse a candidate this race.

HD 66 (Sand Springs area)  Rep. Jadine Nollan is the incumbent, scoring a paltry 23% on this year’s Conservative Index.  Mrs. DeLozier, her challenger, came to OCPAC, and our members decided not to endorse her.  Mrs. DeLozier got a late start and has not raised much support, making her chances slim.  Delozier was a very pleasant person.

HD 70 (east central Tulsa area)  KEN WALKER - Rep. Walker has an 81% lifetime average on the Conservative Index and should therefore be re-elected.

HD 82 (OKC, West Edmond area)  KEVIN CALVEY - Kevin scored 80% on the Conservative Index this year and therefore should be re-elected.

HD 83 (Edmond area)  RANDY McDANIEL - Rep. McDaniel scored 90% on last year’s Conservative Index and certainly should be re-elected.  His work to restore the viability of Oklahoma’s retirement funds without a tax increase has been vital.

HD 84 (Bethany, Warr Acres area)  YOUR CHOICE - OCPAC members decided not to endorse Mr. Cagle.  The other candidates support the radical government education agenda.  Look for Tammy West to win this one without a run-off.

HD 85 (North central OKC)  Nick Berry has attended OCPAC meetings on several occasions, and we even had candidate forum between Nick Berry and Matt Jackson.

HD 87  (OKC, Warr Acres area) - I strongly disagree with the members of OCPAC who did not endorse Mr. Granger, though the vote was very close.  Based on our lengthy survey and tough interview process, there were only a couple of issues of concern with Mr. Granger.  It is my hope that our members do not fall into the trap of perfection becoming the enemy of good.

HD 96  (East Edmond, Arcadia, Luther, Jones area) - LEWIS MOORE – Rep. Moore scored 90% on the latest Conservative Index and certainly should be re-elected over the two less conservative candidates challenging him.

HD 101 (Midwest City, Choctaw area) - TESS TEAGUE - OCPAC members endorsed Tess with her conservative positions, energy, and money.  She does work at the Capitol, so if elected she will be ahead of the learning curve for most freshmen lawmakers.

Congress, U.S. House of Representatives

Let me try to make this easy.  What kind of representation do you want to see from our five U.S. Representatives?  Do you want loyal Republican establishment congressmen who go-along-to-get-along and only fight Obama and the progressive Democrats with less-than effective means and oftentimes worthless votes?  If so re-elect Cole, Lucas, Mullin, and Russell.  If, on the other hand, you want someone who will elect a non-establishment Speaker of the House and use the Constitution to rein-in the run-away Executive and Judicial branches of government, then be sure to re-elect Jim Bridenstine and replace the other four congressmen.

U.S. HD 1  JIM BRIDENSTINE - This will be Jim’s last term (he pledged only three, and he is a man of his word).  He is the best we have.

U.S. HD 2  JARRIN JACKSON - OCPAC endorsed Jackson after our interview process.  Of all the challengers, Mr. Jackson probably has the best chance of up-setting an incumbent.  Before filing date he had already raised nearly $100 thousand.  He is charismatic, hardworking, and has a far greater understanding of the Constitution than Representative Mullin.

U.S. HD 3  DESIREE BROWN - OCPAC did not make an endorsement in this race, but I have had an opportunity to visit with Desiree on two different occasions.  I am impressed with her convictions and understanding of the Constitution.  However, without resources and with a late start she has little to no chance of winning.  Frank Lucas has been in congress so long he is the epitome of what is wrong with congress.  His big campaign war chest allows him to hire slick professional ad agencies to produce commercials that effectively portray him as the best thing since sliced bread to an electorate which has little standard by which to measure a good or useless congressman.  Every time I hear his commercial featuring giggling California Valley Girls acting like Frank Lucas groupies, I want to puke.

U.S. HD 4  JAMES TAYLOR - OCPAC endorsed James Taylor, though candidate Shawn Roberts was also an impressive candidate.  Representative Cole is the biggest problem with the Republican party in the State of Oklahoma.  He is not a conservative, but rather a moderate who is now a major player in the Republican establishment in Washington.  Shaking down big-government advocates in Washington, Cole had $1.5 million in his war chest before this election cycle even began.  James Taylor is principled and would never become a go-along-to-get-along congressman.  He is a true conservative and a constitutionalist.

U.S. HD 5  FRANK VOLPE - Two years ago OCPAC endorsed Steve Russell.  In the primary run-off, I worked very hard to get Steve elected, even making robo-calls on Steve’s behalf.  While I personally love Steve and really appreciate some of the things he is trying to accomplish, I can no longer support him.  Unfortunately, Steve fell in with the Republican establishment from day one, instead of working alongside Jim Bridenstine.  His reasons for supporting Speaker Boehner are insulting to close political observers.  Also, his answer to me at a town hall meeting about his understanding of the difference between revolutionary and evolutionary Islam was insulting and was intended to pacify listeners.  OCPAC members endorsed Frank Volpe, who is also an accomplished retired military man.  Frank is running against Steve for all the right reasons.  He is very principled and would make a very good congressman if elected.

Thanks for your time and attention.  Again, some folks will have different opinions with some of my picks and that is fine.  I hope these picks are helpful to those looking for information.

Friday, June 24, 2016

Endorsement: Jarrin Jackson for Congress


When it comes to electing our public officials, integrity is important. When an elected official says they will do something, we need to be able to trust that they will keep their word. In the 2nd Congressional District race, we now face a crisis of integrity.

When Congressman Mullin first ran in 2012, he made a pledge to the voters that he would only serve three terms. Now that he is seeking his third term in Congress, Mullin has decided that the allure of power is too much to give up. He refuses to say he will keep his term limits pledge, because he's already made up his mind to break it.

That's why conservative leaders like Dr. Tom Coburn and Rep. George Faught have strongly endorsed Jarrin Jackson for Congress. Jackson is a former Army captain, a West Point graduate and Army Ranger with two Bronze Stars earned on tours in Afghanistan. He's a conservative who will make us proud.

Jarrin Jackson knows a thing or two about giving and keeping his word. He gave an oath to "support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic" -- and he's kept his pledge.

Honesty and integrity are important. On Tuesday, Republican voters have the opportunity to choose from two candidates: one who keeps his word, and one who won't. I hope that you will join me in voting for the integrity candidate, combat veteran Jarrin Jackson.

Jamison Faught
Editor, MuskogeePolitico.com

Thursday, June 23, 2016

BREXIT: UK votes to leave the European Union


In a historic referendum, the United Kingdom has voted to leave the European Union. As of 11:50pm CT, the vote total was 16,468,162 (51.7%) for Leave, and 15,387,695 (48.3%) to Remain.

I'm not expert on British/European politics, so I don't exactly know what the fallout will be, but essentially the UK is reclaiming their sovereignty from the EU government in Brussels. The UK has been a member-state of the European Union since 1975.

Results from the BBC (click link for live - screenshot is from 11:50pm):


InsideSources Poll Shows Mullin, Jackson in Close Race


Exclusive InsideSources Poll Shows Mullin, Jackson in Close Race
Mullin up 11, but “Informed Ballot” has Jackson leading by 6 points

Oklahoma Congressman Markwayne Mullin should have been set for an easy reelection campaign, but an exclusive poll conducted by InsideSources shows the race is unexpectedly tight leading into Tuesday’s primary.  Moreover, the more voters know about each candidate, the worse it is for Rep. Mullin.

“We found that the more likely voters found out about Rep. Mullin and Mr. Jackson, the more they tended to support the challenger, Mr. Jackson,” InsideSources publisher Shawn McCoy said.  “Now it’s just a matter of whether Mr. Jackson has the time and resources to inform the voters.”

Mullin, a two-term Republican incumbent, is facing a primary challenge from Jarrin Jackson, a combat veteran who recently won the endorsement of Tom Coburn, the popular former senator. Mullin has also recently drawn strong criticism from conservative groups aligned against legislation he’s proposed to bring federal regulation to Mixed Martial Arts competition. In a conservative House district, these challenges from his right have left Mullin on shaky ground.

Our exclusive poll found Mullin leading Jackson 51.7 percent to 40.2 percent, with 8 percent undecided in initial polling.

However, InsideSources asked a series of follow-up questions about candidate biographies and the attacks being lodged by conservatives opposing Mullin. Mullin has been mute in criticizing his lesser-known opponent, so attacks on Jackson were not included. In this test, known as an “educated ballot,” which is intended to simulate how voters may react to what they hear in the media and from other voters leading up to the primary, Jackson was catapulted to a lead of 45.8 percent to 39.6 percent, with 14.6 percent unsure of how they will vote.

The educated ballot test does not mean Jackson has the momentum to win. As is often the case with primary challengers running against incumbents, Jackson may not have the resources to reach voters with his message. Jackson has raised and spent a small fraction of Mullin’s war chest. According to the most recent filings to the Federal Election Commission, Mullin spent over $300,000 in the two-month period ahead of the primary. Jackson has spent less than $50,000.

While Senators Jim Inhofe and James Lankford have both endorsed Mullin for reelection, the surprise endorsement from Coburn seems to be in response to Mullin walking back a pledge he made in 2012 to run for no more than three terms in the House.

InsideSources told survey respondents about the endorsements, and read language to voters similar to what is found on each campaign’s website about candidate biographies and issue positions. Hearing positive biographical notes on Mullin made 64.7 percent of likely primary voters say they would be more apt to support him, while 58.4 percent found themselves more likely to support Jackson based on the lesser-known opponent’s military service and policy goals.

Voters were told of major conservative criticisms of Mullin, including his support for the Export-Import Bank, which critics argue supports corporate welfare for large companies. Respondents were also told Mullin is facing an ethics investigation for earning too much income outside Congress, and his business received hundreds of thousands of dollars in Obama Stimulus funding. Nearly 50 percent of likely voters said hearing this made them less likely to support Mullin. Conservative groups, including Heritage Action, have in the past made calls to voters in the district critical of Mullin on some of these points.

The InsideSources poll of 521 registered Republican voters in Oklahoma’s 2nd Congressional District was conducted June 20-22, and has a margin of error of +/-10% after applying a likely voter screen and demographic weighting.  Data was gathered via interactive voice response (IVR) calls. Out of 1,622 partial responses, 521 complete responses were gathered. Poll analysis was conducted by Praecones Analytica. InsideSources will be tracking races nationwide ahead of November’s elections.

READ THE FULL POLLING REPORT (PDF).

Coburn talks Jackson, Bartlett, Bridenstine endorsements with Pat Campbell

Tulsa talk radio host Pat Campbell had former senator Tom Coburn on his program this morning to discuss Coburn's endorsements of Jarrin Jackson (2nd District), Dewey Bartlett (Tulsa mayor) and Jim Bridenstine (1st District).

The interview begins with the 2nd District race, and Coburn's reasoning on why he came out against incumbent Markwayne Mullin and supports his challenger, Jarrin Jackson.

Regarding Mullin, Coburn said, "Integrity is the only thing that really counts in politics. and when you tell somebody, you make a commitment to somebody that you're going to do something, and then you start wavering on that commitment, you have no standing with me at all after that." Coburn called Mullin after news broke that he was wavering on his term limits pledge, and Mullin still refused to say he would keep his pledge. In the interview, Coburn goes on to say "[Markwayne Mullin] doesn't have the integrity to keep his word, and to me that's the most important thing."

On Jarrin Jackson, Coburn said "He'll be another Jim Bridenstine if he's elected."

Campbell and Coburn talked about the Tulsa mayoral race. Coburn endorsed Dewey Bartlett in his first race, and supports him for reelection. Coburn appreciates Bartlett's business background and desire to serve Tulsa without making a career in politics. He went on to say "The criticisms I've heard of Dewey are minor in comparison to the risks of having some young guy with really no real world experience except politics - I mean, that's all there is, there's nothing there except politics - being the mayor of Tulsa."

When the conversation moved to the 1st District race, Coburn said "Bridenstine was the easiest endorsement I've ever done in my life. He votes right. Every time. I don't have to worry about how Jim Bridenstine votes, because he's going to look at the Constitution, he's going to look at limited government, he's going to vote that way. Every time, no matter what the rest of the Oklahoma delegation does."

Listen to the whole interview below:




Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Bob Coburn, Arthur Hulbert endorse Hammons for SD9

John Tyler Hammons, former mayor of Muskogee and a Republican candidate for Senate District 9, has released endorsements from Muskogee Mayor Bob Coburn and former HD14 representative Arthur Hulbert.

Bob Coburn:

"John Tyler Hammons and I were competitors but then we became friends. We've worked together to improve our community. It's a testament to his faith, his character, and his ability to work together to bring about positive change. He's a hard worker, diligent, and smart. I am pleased to endorse John Tyler Hammons to be our next State Senator.




Arthur Hulbert: 

"John Tyler Hammons is a conservative Christian who shares our values and who works hard to defend them. He's the kind of young leader who does what is right even when nobody is looking. I got to know him when I was State Representative and I am pleased to endorse him to be our next State Senator."



Hammons is facing Dewayne Pemberton in the June 28th Republican primary for Senate District 9. Pemberton recently retired from a 36-year career in public education, which included being principal at both Hilldale High School and Muskogee High School.

Senate District 9 covers north and east portions of Muskogee County (excluding the Fort Gibson area) and southeast and central portions of Cherokee County. The heavily-Democratic seat is currently held by Earl Garrison (D-Muskogee), who is term-limited. Two Democrats are running - Tahlequah city councilor Stephen Highers and former HD14 candidate Jack Reavis.


Tuesday, June 21, 2016

BROKE: Trump has less cash-on-hand than TOM COLE


One of Donald Trump's biggest claims during the primary was that he was self-funding, and wouldn't be needing campaign donations because he is so rich. That is, until he completely flip-flopped and started asking for donations and fundraising. Turns out that self-funding is easier said than done when most of your wealth is not in liquid assets.

Now, his campaign is practically broke. Want some illustrations?

At the end of May, the last reporting period, Trump's campaign had $1,289,507.76 in cash on hand. He raised $3,104,619.98 during the month of May (and personally donated or loaned $2,293,966.27). In contrast, in May of 2012 Mitt Romney raised $16,002,050.79 and had $16,999,665.75 in cash on hand, not counting RNC money or Romney Victory committee cash.

Additionally, Trump's campaign is carrying a lot of debt, in the form of personal loans amounting to $45,703,185.39.

Contrast Trump's situation with his Democratic counterpart. Hillary Clinton's campaign raised $26,285,740.90 in May (not counting $102,860.92 from the candidate), and has $42,461,785.99 on hand.

Another comparison. Oklahoma Congressman Tom Cole has $1,697,875.84 in cash on hand. That's $408,368.08 more than THE REPUBLICAN PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE HAS.

Really, it's not that hard. Donald Trump is the presumptive nominee of one of the two major political parties in the nation. By all measures he's a very wealthy businessman with lots of connections. Raising money should not be this difficult.

Way to go, Republican voters. Not only does Trump have to overcome a major self-created polling deficit, but he has to overcome a massive self-created money deficit. Say hello to President Hillary Clinton. It's almost as it he's doing this for a friend...

Monday, June 20, 2016

Music Monday: Bugler's Holiday

This week's Music Monday is Bugler's Holiday by American composer Leroy Anderson.

Enjoy!



Click to go below the page break to see all previous Music Monday posts. Do you have a song you'd like to submit for a future Music Monday? Email me at JamisonFaught@MuskogeePolitico.com.

Conservative coalition opposes Mullin's MMA regulation bill

A coalition of conservative organizations and leaders is speaking out against a measure authored by Congressman Markwayne Mullin that would extend federal government regulation to the sport of Mixed Martial Arts. Here is a letter that the coalition wrote regarding the issue:


Dear Chairmen Kline and Upton:

We write in strong opposition to H.R.5365, the “Muhammad Ali Expansion Act,” legislation introduced by Rep. Markwayne Mullin to regulate mixed martial arts (MMA), which is one of the most popular sports in the U.S. and fastest growing throughout the world.  This misguided legislation is yet another unfortunate and unneeded regulatory power grab that will stifle the dynamic innovation and success of MMA.

This legislation, among its many faults, tramples the traditional prerogatives of the states to regulate contracts and sporting events and is of dubious constitutionality.  And, what can only be viewed as bizarre, the bill would enlist government bureaucrats to rank fighters and conduct matchmaking which is currently done exceptionally well by the private sector.

The nation faces many daunting challenges including a national debt that is approaching $20 trillion, a stagnating economy and wages, skyrocketing Obamacare costs, and terrorist enemies who seek to end our very existence.  Federally regulating the MMA market, which is not broken and represents a true American success story, should not be given any serious attention by lawmakers.

MMA was not an overnight success.  The American entrepreneurial spirit overcame numerous challenges to position it as a thriving well-regarded international sport.  Because of its success, there are numerous fighters who have made millions in a sport that barely existed 15 years ago, thousands of jobs have been created and supported, and states and municipalities have enjoyed the benefits of increased economic activity and tax revenue.  Regulators throughout the U.S. and the world have adopted unified rules of MMA which ensures fair fights as well as predictable, transparent, and fair regulatory treatment.  Because of the growing popularity of the sport, there are several MMA promoters who compete vigorously for talent and fans.  This thriving free market should not be impeded by regulatory tinkerers on Capitol Hill.

One of the most troubling aspects of the Mullin bill is that it removes from the promoter the decision how fighters are ranked and when and against whom fighters are matched.  From all accounts, the free market is not disappointing MMA fans.  Promoters have every incentive, economic and reputational, to arrange the bouts that fans want to watch; and those same fans, reporters, and athletes will hold promoters accountable if they fail to appropriately match fighters.  Why Rep. Mullin believes government matchmaking would be superior to the current free market system is unclear.  What is clear is that the system is not broken, and H.R. 5365 is a solution in search of a problem.

This legislation also tramples the principles embodied in Article 1 and the 10th Amendment of the Constitution.  Congress can’t delegate its legislative authority to a private entity to write rules intended to be adopted by agencies of state governments.  Incredibly, H.R. 5365 does just that.  It directs a private entity (the Association of Boxing Commissions) to write regulations to be adopted by state boxing commissions.  We have long been concerned about Congress’ bad habit of delegating broad unaccountable authority to federal regulatory agencies. Rep. Mullin’s idea takes this bad idea several steps further.  He would delegate broad unaccountable authority to a private entity and have state agencies adopt those regulations.  This is an affront to our constitutional order.

Finally, we are deeply concerned about the growing federal regulatory leviathan.  It regulates our lives in countless intrusive and burdensome ways.  According to the Mercatus Center, economic growth in the U.S. has been slowed by 0.8 percent per year since 1980 which means, had regulation held constant from 1980 through 2012, the U.S. economy would be 25 percent larger – a delta of $4 trillion – which amounts to a benefit of $13,000 per person in the United States. More importantly, a $4 trillion increase in GDP would create, literally, millions of jobs—potentially wiping out unemployment for those both in and out of the workforce!

The American people are tired of business as usual in Washington and are not clamoring for more regulation on the private economy, including MMA.  Instead, Congress should reject H.R. 5365 and focus on constitutional policies that reduce regulations, establish favorable economic conditions, balance the budget, and keep the American people safe.

Sincerely,

George Landrith, President and CEO, Frontiers of Freedom
Andrew Langer, President, Institute for Liberty
Morton Blackwell, Chairman, The Weyrich Lunch
James L. Martin, Chairman, 60 Plus Association
Matt Schlapp, Chairman, American Conservative Union
Phil Kerpen, President, American Commitment
David Williams, President, Taxpayers Protection Alliance
Seton Motley, President, Less Government
Melissa Ortiz, President, Able Americans
Carrie Lukas, Managing Director, Independent Women’s Voice
Heather R. Higgins, President and CEO, Independent Women’s Voice
Andrew F. Quinlan, President, Center for Freedom and Prosperity
David Ridenour, President, National Center for Public Policy Research
Alex St. James, National Executive Director, One Day in America
Daniel Schneider, Executive Director, American Conservative Union
Larry Cirignano, DC Representative, Children First Foundation
Rusty Weiss, Founder, Mental Recession
Cameron Gray, Author, Richochet.com
Norm Singleton, Senior Vice President, Campaign for Liberty
Matthew Nye, Chairman, Republican Liberty Caucus

Saturday, June 18, 2016

Coburn & Andrzejewski: Why does the IRS need guns?


Why Does the IRS Need Guns?
After grabbing legal power, bureaucrats are amassing firepower. 
It’s time to scale back the federal arsenal.


Special agents at the IRS equipped with AR-15 military-style rifles? Health and Human Services “Special Office of Inspector General Agents” being trained by the Army’s Special Forces contractors? The Department of Veterans Affairs arming 3,700 employees?

The number of non-Defense Department federal officers authorized to make arrests and carry firearms (200,000) now exceeds the number of U.S. Marines (182,000). In its escalating arms and ammo stockpiling, this federal arms race is unlike anything in history. Over the last 20 years, the number of these federal officers with arrest-and-firearm authority has nearly tripled to over 200,000 today, from 74,500 in 1996.

What exactly is the Obama administration up to?

On Friday, June 17, our organization, American Transparency, is releasing its OpenTheBooks.com oversight report on the militarization of America. The report catalogs federal purchases of guns, ammunition and military-style equipment by seemingly bureaucratic federal agencies. During a nine-year period through 2014, we found, 67 agencies unaffiliated with the Department of Defense spent $1.48 billion on guns and ammo. Of that total, $335.1 million was spent by agencies traditionally viewed as regulatory or administrative, such as the Smithsonian Institution and the U.S. Mint.

Some examples of spending from 2005 through 2014 raise the question: Who are they preparing to battle?


  • The Internal Revenue Service, which has 2,316 special agents, spent nearly $11 million on guns, ammunition and military-style equipment. That’s nearly $5,000 in gear for each agent.
  • The Department of Veterans Affairs, which has 3,700 law-enforcement officers guarding and securing VA medical centers, spent $11.66 million. It spent more than $200,000 on night-vision equipment, $2.3 million for body armor, more than $2 million on guns, and $3.6 million for ammunition. The VA employed no officers with firearm authorization as recently as 1995.
  • The Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service spent $4.77 million purchasing shotguns, .308 caliber rifles, night-vision goggles, propane cannons, liquid explosives, pyro supplies, buckshot, LP gas cannons, drones, remote-control helicopters, thermal cameras, military waterproof thermal infrared scopes and more.
  • The Environmental Protection Agency spent $3.1 million on guns, ammunition and military-style equipment. The EPA has put nearly $800 million since 2005 into its “Criminal Enforcement Division.”
  • The Food and Drug Administration employs 183 heavily armed “special agents.”
  • The University of California, Berkeley acquired 14 5.56mm assault rifles and Yale University police accepted 20 5.56mm assault rifles from the Defense Department. Texas Southern University and Saddleback College police even acquired Mine Resistant Vehicles (MRVs).


Other paper-pushing federal agencies with firearm-and-arrest authority that have expanded their arsenals since 2006 include the Small Business Administration, Social Security Administration, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Education Department, Energy Department, Bureau of Engraving and Printing, National Institute of Standards and Technology and many others.

People from both ends of the political spectrum have expressed alarm at this trend. Conservatives argue that it is hypocritical, unconstitutional and costly for political leaders to undermine the Second Amendment while simultaneously equipping nonmilitary agencies with heavy weapons, hollow-point bullets and military-style equipment. Progressives like Sen. Bernie Sanders have raised civil liberties concerns about the militarization of local police with vehicles built for war and other heavy weaponry.

Meanwhile, federal authorities are silent on the growing arsenal at federal agencies. In fact, we asked the IRS for an asset accounting of their gun locker—their guns and ammunition asset inventory by location. Their response? “We don’t have one [an inventory], but could create one for you, if important.”

Our data shows that the federal government has become a gun show that never adjourns. Taxpayers need to tell Washington that police powers belong primarily to cities and states, not the feds.

Dr. Coburn is a physician and former U.S. senator from Oklahoma. He is the honorary chairman, and Mr. Andrzejewski is the founder and CEO, of OpenTheBooks.com, a repository of public-spending records.

Friday, June 17, 2016

Loveless comments on Fallin's ERAD-delay order


Following Governor Fallin directing the Oklahoma Highway Patrol to delay use of their ERAD card readers, State Sen. Kyle Loveless (R-OKC) issued the following statement:

"On behalf of freedom-loving Oklahomans across the state, I want to thank Governor Fallin for taking this issue seriously.  Suspending OHP's card scanner program is the appropriate response until we know exactly what the full capabilities of these device are."

"When we are faced with balancing Constitutional liberty and public safety, we should always err on the side of the Constitution until we have all the facts."

Fallin directs OHP to delay ERAD usage


Governor Mary Fallin Directs Oklahoma Highway Patrol to 
Delay Use of Credit Card Reading Devices
Governor Wants Policy Developed for Using Electronic Card Readers

OKLAHOMA CITY - Governor Mary Fallin today directed her Cabinet secretary of safety and security to delay the use of devices that read the magnetic strips on credit, debit and gift cards as well as any other card that has financial information on them.

The Oklahoma Highway Patrol has had the Electronic Recovery and Access to Data readers for about a month. The agency purchased 20 card readers, with 16 assigned to troopers. None of the devices have been used to help seize any funds.

The readers are intended to apprehend those involved in identity theft or other illegal activities involving monetary transactions. The readers allow troopers to read the back of the strip on a card or other item, such as a hotel room card, to see if it matches the information on the front.

Secretary of Safety and Security Michael Thompson, who also serves as commissioner of the Department of Public Safety, said that before troopers may use the readers, they must have reasonable suspicion to believe a crime has occurred. Troopers typically would not use the devices unless a motorist was stopped traveling with dozens of cards.

Some groups and lawmakers have raised concerns that the devices could be misused and raised suspicions that troopers were scanning everyone’s information.

“The Department of Public Safety needs to formulate a clear policy for using this new technology,” said Fallin. “It can be a viable tool for law enforcement only if authorities are able to ensure Oklahoma motorists and others driving through our state that it will be used appropriately.”

More than 25 states use the card-reading devices. Their use has been upheld by courts.

“The Oklahoma Highway Patrol has enjoyed the trust of Oklahoma motorists for decades,’’ Fallin said. “Taking time to develop policy for the use of these devices and to educate the public will help calm the fears of the motoring public.”

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Fallin disapproves of salary TSET offered to Patrice Douglas


Governor Mary Fallin Does Not Approve of High Salary Offered to Agency Head

OKLAHOMA CITY – Governor Mary Fallin today said the Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust’s (TSET) failure to file necessary hiring paperwork for a new, highly-paid chief executive position would violate the spirit of an executive order that she issued in February 2015.

The executive order prohibits new hires, employee raises or bonuses unless an exception is approved by the statewide elected official who directs and manages the agency or the appropriate Cabinet secretary. The agency so far has not submitted the paperwork for the new $250,000 position of chief executive officer. TSET has submitted required paperwork for other positions in the past.

“This agency needs to play by the same rules it has been playing under until it decided to create a new top-level position with such a high salary,” said Fallin. “At the bare minimum, TSET needs to submit the same paperwork for this position as it has for many others.

“This salary sends the wrong message when our state is facing a difficult economic and budget climate. These are public trust funds, and the public will lose trust in this important agency if this salary takes effect.”

Fallin said she has directed Health and Human Services Secretary Terry Cline to deny the proposed salary.  The most recent state study on agency director salaries recommended a maximum salary of $143,714 for the leader of TSET. State law enacted by the Legislature and Fallin in 2013 requires agencies and their governing boards to set chief executive salaries within the range recommended in the director salary reports.

TSET’s board of directors last week voted to offer Patrice Douglas the newly created post of chief executive officer.

“Patrice Douglas was a fine public servant who I expect would be a wonderful asset to TSET, but the board has to understand the concern about this salary,” the governor said. “The board never consulted me about this decision. If I had been, I would have strongly advised each of them to set a more appropriate salary.”

TSET is overseen by two boards that manage programs and its $1 billion in tobacco settlement money. Only the interest is spent on smoking cessation and other health-related issues.

The agency’s current executive director is paid $120,000 a year and will stay with TSET, which has 22 employees. By comparison, the state’s seven public pension systems employ approximately 150 workers overseeing combined assets in excess of $26 billion. No employee or director of a pension system makes more than $144,000 annually.

Oklahoma voters in 2000 approved a constitutional amendment that created the Tobacco Settlement Endowment Fund to invest payments from the 1998 Master Settlement Agreement. TSET programs and grants are funded by the earnings from the endowment fund.

A board of directors oversees the state agency’s employees and programs. A separate investment board manages investments.

The seven-member board of directors is appointed by several elected officials: the attorney general; state treasurer; speaker of the House of Representatives; state superintendent of public instruction; state auditor and inspector; president pro tempore of the Senate; and the governor.

Dr. Everett Piper endorses Julie Daniels in SD29



Dr. Everett Piper has endorsed Julie Daniels in the Senate District 29 GOP primary:

"While one candidate for the current state senate race correctly states that she worked several years ago as a part time instructor at Oklahoma Wesleyan, there is another candidate who has shown year after year that she truly believes in OKWU and its values. Julie Daniels has demonstrated her true colors and her personal integrity over and over again. I trust her and she has my vote for our next state senator."

- Everett Piper
Oklahoma Wesleyn University President

Julie Daniels is running in the Republican primary for State Senate District 29, which covers Washington County, Nowata County, and the northern half of Rogers County.

OK Mozart outdoor concert location moved due to heat

From the OK Mozart International Music Festival:

Due to heat advisories, the Woolaroc Outdoor Concert moved 
to Bartlesville Community Center

BARTLESVILLE, Okla. — After much deliberation with patrons, musicians and the board of directors, OK Mozart's Executive Director Randy Thompson decided to move the Woolaroc Outdoor Concert on Friday, June 17 at 8 p.m. to the Bartlesville Community Center (BCC).  The decision was a difficult one but the safety of participants and musicians is of the utmost concern.  The BCC invites those who still wish to picnic in the heat to do so in the green space near the fountain on the property.  The food vendors, including Price's Meat Market and Jeremy's Sno Cones will be available as planned.

The concert is the festival's best-seller with ticket sales outpacing several years' past and will feature the Bartlesville Symphony Orchestra, Lauren Green, conductor with guest artists Caitlyn Caughell & Kennedy Caughell.  For information or questions, please call 918-336-9800.

About OK Mozart
For the past 32 years, the OK Mozart Festival has taken place each June in Bartlesville and is made possible through the support of the Oklahoma Arts Council, the National Endowment for the Arts, Mid-America Arts Alliance, ConocoPhillips, Phillips66, the Oklahoma Center for Nonprofits and individual, corporate and foundation patrons throughout the USA. For more information on the festival, visit okmozart.com.

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Bridenstine announces "Freedom Rally" with Freedom Caucus members



Congressman Jim Bridenstine Announces Freedom Rally

Please join me for a Freedom Rally with the Tulsa Praise Orchestra and my special guests Rep. Jim Jordan (Ohio), Rep. Mark Meadows (North Carolina), and other conservatives from the House Freedom Caucus.

I'm proud to say that the House Freedom Caucus has helped move Congress in a more conservative direction, and I am excited to have the opportunity to host these conservative leaders in Oklahoma.

If you would like to attend, please RSVP for your free ticket here.

What: Freedom Rally

When: Monday, June 20th
6:30pm - 8:00pm
Doors Open at 5:30pm

Where: Renaissance Hotel and Conference Center - 6808 S 107th E Ave, Tulsa, OK 74133

Monday, June 13, 2016

Music Monday: Ride of the Valkyries

This week's Music Monday is Ride of the Valkyries by German composer Richard Wagner.

Enjoy!



Click to go below the page break to see all previous Music Monday posts. Do you have a song you'd like to submit for a future Music Monday? Email me at JamisonFaught@MuskogeePolitico.com.

Saturday, June 11, 2016

OHP, Loveless comment on ERAD card reader usage



Civil asset forfeiture has been a brewing controversy over the past few years, both in Oklahoma and across the nation.

What is civil asset forfeiture? Here's an explanation from the Cato Institute:
Under state and federal law, police departments can seize and keep property that is suspected of involvement in criminal activity. Unlike criminal asset forfeiture, however, with civil forfeiture, a property owner need not be found guilty of a crime—or even charged—to permanently lose her cash, car, home, or other property.
Oklahoma is widely recognized as a state with many abuses in the civil asset forfeiture practice. Mike McCarville of The McCarville Report has posted extensively about this topic. One recent case took place right here in Muskogee County, when Burmese Christian band manager Eh Wah had over $53,000 in sales proceeds and donations seized by the Muskogee County Sheriff's Department after being pulled over for a broken tail light. Wah was never charged with a crime, and after the story hit national media Muskogee County District Attorney Orvil Loge dropped all charges and returned the money.

Recently, news broke that the Oklahoma Highway Patrol had acquired new technology that can be used in asset forfeiture. Enter the Electronic Recovery and Access to Data (ERAD) Prepaid Card Reader. Here's this from the Department of Homeland Security:
During arrests of criminal couriers, law enforcement officers rarely find bundles of cash wrapped in rubber bands anymore. Instead, they find stacks of plastic cards — bank credit and debit cards, retail gift cards, library cards, hotel card keys, even magnetic-striped Metrorail cards — that have been turned into prepaid cards.

The Department of Homeland Security Science and Technology Directorate’s Electronic Recovery and Access to Data (ERAD) Prepaid Card Reader is becoming a vital tool for law enforcement seizing these cards and funds associated with criminal activity.Several credit cards, hotel key cards and other cards with magnetic strips

The ERAD Prepaid Card Reader is a small, handheld device that uses wireless connectivity to allow law enforcement officers in the field to check the balance of cards. This allows for identification of suspicious prepaid cards and the ability to put a temporary hold on the linked funds until a full investigation can be completed. The project, developed by S&T’s First Responder Group (FRG), began in March 2012.
[...]
FRG transitioned the card reader to the commercial market, and it is now available for law enforcement use.
The Oklahoma Highway Patrol acquired between 15 and 20 ERAD devices from ERAD Group, Inc., in April. According to the contract (PDF link), OHP is paying a one-time implementation charge of $5,000, in addition to 7.7% of all funds seized through the readers and up to $1,500 for training.

I spoke with OHP public information officer Capt. Paul Timmons yesterday about the program. According to Timmons, "The [ERAD] readers have been used in other states across the country for quite some time; Oklahoma has had them for approximately 3 weeks." He didn't have any information about surrounding states using the readers. Due to the amount of readers purchased, only a small number of patrol cars have the devices.

I asked how many incidents have resulted in seizing of funds, and he said that "there have been no seizures of funds to date." 

He further said that two arrests have taken place as a result of OHP implementing the ERAD readers. "There have been charges filed for taking a credit card without consent, false making of credit/debit cards, possession of unsigned credit/debit cards, and possession of incomplete credit/debit cards as a result of having the [ERAD] machines. Other charges filed include possession of falsely/embossed bank cards and possession of drug paraphernalia. Total arrested so far 2 subjects with charges totaling over 260 felony charges.  Arrest warrants have been issued for two other suspects." The two individuals arrested had 129 cards with them.

When asked under what circumstances the readers are used, Capt. Timmons likened it to a DUI stop. The individual has to meet certain benchmarks before being pulled over, and if the officer determines there is enough probable cause or reasonable suspicion, they obtain consent to search vehicle and to run cards through reader. If the information listed on the card doesn't match what shows up when the card is scanned, the ERAD reader gives an error message, at which point they can pursue to an arrest and/or seizing of the card(s).

Capt. Timmons said that the biggest misconception about the readers is that they can scan bank debit or credit cards and pull banking information off. He said that is not the case; the readers only work on preloaded gift cards and similar cards. "We absolutely will not ask for your banking information" or credit card information.

According to Capt. Timmons, OHP is using the devices primarily to investigate credit card fraud and identity theft.

State Sen. Kyle Loveless, the primary legislative author of civil asset forfeiture reform, has strong concerns about the program.
Overreach by the government without any or little due process is what we fought the British over 200 years ago.

Rewind your clock a year, we were told NO innocent people's property was ever taken, and we only could use the property on drug interdiction efforts and law enforcement purposes.   That sounds great- but it is patently FALSE.

Ask the Goss family of Creek County or Chief Steven Mills of Apache, Oklahoma or the famous case out of Muskogee – of international fame because of Mr. Wah who was the manager for the Christian band that traveled around the US raising money for missions, and for orphans in Burma.

If their money isn't safe neither is yours or mine. These ERAD readers are forfeiture on steroids.

Their own promotional materials boast of taking months of wasted time and process where we can drain the funds from these cards in seconds—from months to seconds. They leave two words out – DUE PROCESS.

The legislature was never told about these purchases and when 25 states had legislation to reform their terrible forfeiture laws- Oklahoma double downed and went the opposite direction.  The timing of hearing about this after session is lost on no one.

We are hearing of how business and tourism will be effected by this unacceptable, unconscionable, un-American and the opposite of what Oklahomans want.  This is a slap in the face of every Oklahoman.  Guess who the biggest card issuer is of prepaid debit cards?  The state of Oklahoma uses pre paid cards for all kinds of reasons.

I will continue to fight, there is no left or right up or down – there is wrong and right and this is plain wrong.
According to OklahomaWatch, the ERAD readers are also in use by "a joint law enforcement drug interdiction team under the Oklahoma County District Attorney’s Office".

What do you think about the program? Comment with your thoughts.

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Family Research Council endorses Bridenstine for re-election



The Family Research Council has endorsed Rep. Jim Bridenstine for Congress in Oklahoma’s First Congressional District.  FRC Action released this letter today:

FRC Action Letter:
On behalf of FRC Action PAC, the political action committee connected with Family Research Council Action, I am pleased to endorse you in the race for re-election to the United States Congress in the 1st District Congressional District of the state of Oklahoma.

These are challenging times. Our nation is looking for leaders who are committed to addressing important political issues head-on. From observing your work on Capitol Hill, speaking with those who know you, and evaluating your record as a legislator, we believe you will continue to be such a leader in the United States Congress.

Your record of voting to repeal Obamacare, to defend religious liberty, to ensure the American people are not forced to subsidize elective abortion, and to end taxpayers’ government-mandated partnership with Planned Parenthood make you a candidate who stands for the most fundamental freedoms of Americans.

By your condemnation of executive overreach into school bathrooms, and your co-sponsorship of the First Amendment Defense Act, you have proven you will continue to defend the Constitution and the rule of law. You understand that Big Government is not the answer to America’s challenges, and have supported reigning in an intrusive government bureaucracy. We commend your commitment to our First Amendment liberties, the right of conscience, and our freedom to live out our beliefs.

FRC Action PAC is confident that you will continue to advocate for limited government and strong family values. We are pleased to offer our endorsement, and will encourage those who care about the future of our nation and our freedoms to support you as well.

Sincerely,

Lt. Gen. (US Army-Ret.) Jerry Boykin

Executive Vice President

Family Research Council Action PAC

Monday, June 6, 2016

Columnist: Say 'No' to Mullin's MMA federal regulation


MMA doesn't need boxing's regulations
by Brian McNicoll

Wouldn't it be terrific if the federal government did for mixed martial arts what it has done for boxing?, said no one ever.

Actually, there is a guy — a former mixed martial arts fighter at that. His name is U.S. Rep. Markwayne Mullin, R-Westville.

Mullin wants to bring mixed martial arts under the Muhammad Ali Boxing Reform Act of 2000 because he claims, as most fighters do at some point, that “it's slanted toward promoters.” Better, he says, that the federal government come in and make mixed martial arts as ethical and fair and transparent as boxing by imposing rules on MMA that boxing summarily ignores.

Mullin's beef seems to be that boxers have the right to look at the books. Boxing promoters routinely ignore this rule, and it's not terribly likely the information would be accurate if they did provide it.

There is a lawsuit in federal court in Nevada on the same issue, and the Arizona-based lawyer behind it is among the big advocates for putting MMA under the same regulations as boxing.

The UFC (Ultimate Fighting Championship) is the leading mixed martial arts promotion company. It was virtually bankrupt when the current owners took over in 2001, but this year it will promote more than 500 athletes in 42 events and broadcast in 150 countries to more than 1 billion households. It's widely credited with making MMA the fastest-growing spectator sport in the world.

UFC says its fighters are among the highest-paid in the business and that those who want to see the books on pay-per-view deals routinely negotiate that into their contracts.

It takes serious issue with Mullin's contention that UFC “had not established credible and objective criteria to rate professional boxers. … That ratings are susceptible to manipulation, have deprived boxers of fair opportunities for advancement, and have undermined public confidence in the integrity of the sport.”

This is laughable on a number of levels. First, UFC is putting on a show here. It should be able to match up its fighters as it sees fit. If it rigs the matches, fans will walk away. And it cannot be seriously argued these regulations have produced credible rankings nor at all inspired confidence in boxing.

Besides, boxing is a matter for state regulation, and neither states nor Washington, D.C., ought to be designing rankings procedures for fighters.

How exactly does government determine a rating system to be fair? Will we set up a board to review controversial decisions? Who sits on it? Why not let fans be the arbiter? They're the ones who care.

This bill looks like the handiwork of unions and lawyers. It calls in the feds to lay the groundwork for lawsuits and insinuate themselves into negotiations between employers and employees. That's to be expected of unions and trial lawyers. It is not expected from a congressman from the party of limited government.

One hopes Congress will find better things to do with its time than get involved in this.

McNicoll is a columnist based in Washington, D.C. He has worked for The Heritage Foundation, Competitive Enterprise Institute and the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.

Combat Veterans for Congress PAC endorses Jarrin Jackson


Combat  Veterans For Congress PAC Endorses Jarrin Jackson
for U.S. Congress, OK-District 2
Says General George Washington would have approved

June 6, 2016 (Oologah, OK) – Today, Combat Veterans For Congress PAC announced its endorsement of combat veteran Jarrin Jackson who is challenging Congressman Markwayne Mullin in Oklahoma's second district.

Chairman Joseph R. John, USNA '62 announced:  "The Combat Veterans For Congress PAC is endorsing the 107th Combat Veteran For Congress in 8 years; he is a fiscal and Constitutional conservative candidate who will work to rein in the out of control spending by the irresponsible members of Congress, will work toward unleashing the private sector to create jobs & stimulate business investment, and will support a strong national defense that adapts to America’s evolving threats.  Captain Jarrin D. Jackson, USMA ’08, USA (Ranger Qualified) who resides in Claremore, OK with a combined 8 years of service in the US Army and US Army Reserve, including eighteen months deployed in Afghanistan in combat as an infantry officer.

CPT Jackson is running for election in the 2nd Congressional District of Oklahoma against 2 term Congressman Markwayne Mullin (R-OK-2).  Cong Mullin voted for HJ 124 the 2014 Continuing Resolution, HJ Res 35 the 2015 Continuing Resolution, voted for HR 23350 Keep Your health Plan Act of 2013, the 2015 Omnibus Spending Bill, the 2016 Bill Omnibus Spending Bill, H Admdt 227 Federal Sugar Program Amendment, voted for S 1177 to reauthorize the Department of Education, voted for HR 2642 the 2014 Farm Bill, voted to lend money to state sponsors of terror with H Admdt 813 to HR 22; Mullin enables big government by not defending the US Constitution or the legislative process, nor has he opposed Obama’s repeated violations of the US Constitution.

Jarrin Jackson was born on May 30, 1985 in Oklahoma City, OK.  He was raised in a lower-middle income family in North East Oklahoma in the city of Oologah, OK.  He graduated from Oologah High School in May 2003.  Jarrin Jackson received an appointment and entered the US Military Academy at West Point, New York, graduated on May 31, 2008 with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Military History.

Jarrin Jackson was sworn into the US Army (Infantry Branch) as a Second Lieutenant on May 31, 2008 at the US Military Academy at West Point, New York.  In July 2008, 2LT Jackson reported to US Army Infantry Officer Basic Leadership Course at Fort Benning, Georgia.  Upon completion of training in November 2009, he entered Ranger School, completing training and qualified as a Ranger in March 6, 2009.  2LT Jackson was assigned as a Rifle Platoon Leader, Charlie Company, 3rd Battalion, 187th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade, 101st Airborne Division, at Fort Campbell, KY, Texas.  In November 2009, 2LT Jackson was promoted to First Lieutenant.

In February 2010 1st LT Jackson deployed in support of Operation Enduring Freedom 10-11 as a Rifle Platoon Leader to Khost Province, Afghanistan.  In March 2010, 1st LT Jackson was selected to lead his second platoon by his Battalion Commander, when another officer failed to perform under fire.  Over 30% of 1st LT Jackson’s new platoon already were awarded Purple Heart Medals.  1LT Jackson personally led his platoon on over 200 combat patrols in Khost Province - near the border of Pakistan and a high-traffic area for Taliban and Haqqani insurgents.  He redeployed to CONUS in February 2011.  For Combat duty in Afghanistan, 1st LT Jackson was awarded the Bronze Star Medal, the Army Commendation Medal, the NATO Medal, and other Service and Campaign Medals.

Upon redeployment, 1LT Jackson was assigned to the Maneuver Captain’s Career Course at Fort Benning, GA.  He was promoted to Captain in July 2011.  After graduating the Maneuver Captain’s Career Course, CPT Jackson was assigned to the 3rd Cavalry Regiment at Ft. Hood, TX.  CPT Jackson distinguished himself as a planner, and earned the Army Commendation Medal from his Regimental Commander.  As before in his career, his performance as a staff officer got him selected ahead of his peers to take command of Ironhawk Troop, 3d Cavalry.

CPT Jackson excelled as an Infantry Commander. His Troop finished with the highest Army Physical Fitness Test average in the Regiment, the second most earned Expert Infantryman Badges, and won the Regimental Top Gun Award for Stryker Gunnery at Ft. Hood by innovating gunnery training techniques that are studied by Stryker Master Gunners at III Corps.  CPT Jackson assumed his second command as an infantry company commander in May 2014 and transitioned the unit for deployment to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom 14-15 in June 2014.

CPT Jackson initially deployed to Wardak Province as commander of Headquarter and Headquarters Troop (HHT) in the 3d Squadron, 3d Cavalry Regiment.  He was responsible for the drawdown and transition of American military installations in Afghanistan to Afghan National Security Forces after transitioning Tactical Base Airborne in Wardak.  In August 2014, CPT Jackson was assigned to Helmand Province, where HHT replaced the last United States Marine Corps unit in Afghanistan. CPT Jackson redeployed to CONUS November 2014 and left Active Duty in July 2015.  CPT Jackson was awarded a second Bronze Star Medal for second combat tour in Afghanistan.

Captain Jackson’s awards include the Bronze Star Medal (an Oak Leaf Cluster for a 2nd award), Meritorious Service Medal, Army Commendation Medal (an Oak Leaf Cluster for a 2nd award), Army Achievement Medal (Oak Leaf Cluster for a 2nd award), the NATO Medal, the Combat Infantryman’s Badge, the Air Assault Badge, the Parachutist Badge, the Ranger Tab, and other Service and Campaign Medals.

Upon transition from Active Duty, CPT Jackson affiliated with the US Army Reserve, and completed 8 years of service in June 2016.  Jarrin worked at a non-profit that provides ongoing performance training for police and fire professionals.  Jarrin Jackson was invited by AmericanDreamU to speak to transitioning Active Duty soldiers about entrepreneurship and vision casting in their preparation to integrate with the private sector.  In his spare time, Jarrin enjoys watching football, coaching his son’s little league soccer team, and making up for lost time as a deployed father.  Jarrin met his wife Katie at church in Nashville and they were married in 2009; Katie holds a BS from Harvard University and a MD from Vanderbilt University and is a practicing pediatrician at St. Francis Hospital in Tulsa.

Jarrin Jackson is a member of the American Legion, the VFW, the NRA, the Army Reserve Association, the 101st, and the US Military Academy Alumni Association.  Jarrin has been endorsed by former Senator Tom Coburn, Oklahoma’s Conservative Political Action Committee, the Delaware County Republican Party, The Madison Project, Oklahoma State Representative George Faught, former 2010 OK 2 candidate Charles Thompson, former 2012 OK 2 candidate Wayne Pettigrew, former 2012 OK 2 candidate Dakota Wood, and the Combat Veterans For Congress PAC.  Jarrin, his wife Katie of 7 years, his sons Lloyd (age 5 years) and Dale (age 1.5 years) attend church and are members of the Memorial Drive Church in Tulsa, OK.

The Combat Veteran’s For Congress PAC is pleased to endorse Captain Jarrin D. Jackson, USMA ’08, USA (Ranger Qualified) who would bring to Congress extraordinary public sector and private sector skills and wisdom to better solve problems and represent the 2nd Congressional District of Oklahoma and the country.  If you review CPT Jackson’s positions on his Web site, you would be pleased with his stands; they agree with the Combat Veterans For Congress Mission Statement.  We look forward to working with CPT Jackson, and are pleased that a Combat Veteran of his caliber is running for Congress.  If you have friends, associates, or relatives who know voters in the 2nd Congressional District of Oklahoma, kindly pass this E-mail on to them, and ask them to support CPT Jackson by working in his campaign, providing financial support for his campaign in any amount, and/or by networking with others who would be willing to support his campaign.  The military is one of the few remaining institutions producing the caliber of men and women needed to restore this nation to the greatness our Founding Fathers envisioned.  We have endorsed another Combat Veteran For Congress that General George Washington would have approved of.  A Veteran is someone who, at one point in his life, wrote a blank check made payable “to The United States of America” for an amount “up to and including his life.”

Jackson said, "I'm honored by this endorsement because CVFC's million plus supporters insist on integrity and faithfulness to the Constitution.  If there's one thing Veterans take seriously, it's our oath.  We rise in defense of our Nation when called, and as Capt. John makes clear, we are never alone."

For more information on Jarrin Jackson and his principled stands for Oklahoma and our country, please visit his campaign website: jarrinjackson.com, and Facebook at jarrinjackson1.