Thursday, January 19, 2017

Rep. Kirby should resign or be expelled

State Rep. Dan Kirby (R, Dist. 75)

State Rep. Dan Kirby (R-Tulsa) has now been accused of sexual harassment by two of his former legislative assistants. The House Rules Committee is reviewing those claims, as well as allegations against other members of the House. That investigation should continue.

The first accusation against Kirby was settled out of court, at a cost to taxpayers of nearly $45,000. After news reports uncovered the secret settlement, Kirby announced that he would resign, only to rescind that resignation several days later.

Kirby claims that the first allegation is groundless and that he will be found innocent, and that he had no idea of the situation until it hit the news. I find that hard to believe. He acknowledges that major details of the second allegation, portions of which were reported on today by the Oklahoman, are true. This includes a "consensual" (according to Kirby) relationship with his legislative assistant -- which is against the rules and practice of the House.

Kirby acknowledges conduct that is unbefitting of an Oklahoma state legislator, and is an abuse of his office as an elected official. He should resign.

If he fails to do so, the House of Representatives should follow Article V, Section 30 of the Oklahoma Constitution and expel him for disorderly and inappropriate conduct.

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