Monday, March 27, 2023

House votes to censure Rep. Dean Davis, strip committees until apology over 'conduct unbecoming'

This afternoon, the State House overwhelmingly voted to censure Rep. Dean Davis and remove him from all committees until he makes a public apology for his actions related to his recent alcohol-fueled arrest.

Around 4pm, at the conclusion of the legislative day and after the House GOP caucused, State Rep. Anthony Moore made the following motion:

Sunday, March 26, 2023

Disgrace in the House: Speaker McCall needs to act to quell law-breaking legislator arrogance

Proverbs 20:1 says "Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging: and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise." Some argue that the Bible does not explicitly prohibit the consumption of alcohol, but even the most ardent drunkard has to admit the the Bible has very strong warnings against intoxicating beverages.

One of the less-illustrious members of the Oklahoma Legislature, State Rep. Dean Davis (R-Broken Arrow), is in the news - again - for an alcohol-related arrest - again.

Hugo Lake Park would become state park again under bill passed by State Senate

Senate approves measure to restore state park status of Hugo Lake Park

OKLAHOMA CITY (March 23rd) – Sen. George Burns, R-Pollard, is the author of Senate Bill 675, which was approved Wednesday and would transfer Hugo Lake Park back to the Oklahoma Tourism and Recreation Department.

Cong. Lucas: Biden’s Land Grab An Offense To Private Property Rights

Biden’s Land Grab An Offense To Private Property Rights
by Congressman Frank Lucas (OK-03)

In February I began hosting town hall meetings, inviting those who call Oklahoma’s Third Congressional District home out to discuss the issues most pressing in Washington and at home in Oklahoma. While there is a lot happening across the nation, there was one topic that came up time and time again that greatly troubles me: President Biden’s 30 by 30 Initiative.

The Biden Administration’s 30 by 30 land grab stems from a May 2021 report entitled, “America the Beautiful” Initiative. This Initiative establishes a vague directive to put restrictions on at least 30% of the United States’ lands and waters by 2030.

Small: Oklahoma must compete in education

Oklahoma must compete in education
By Jonathan Small

In the competition between states, there is no sitting still. Oklahoma could become a national leader in school choice this year.

The Oklahoma House of Representatives has approved House Bill 1935, which would provide all Oklahoma families a tax credit of $5,000 per student for private school or $2,500 for homeschooling.

That proposal would make Oklahoma one of the nation’s most attractive places to raise a child. But other states are not sitting still as Oklahoma policymakers conduct this debate.

Senate Pro Tem Treat names members of Economic Development Select Committee

Senate Pro Tem Treat Names Members of Economic Development Select Committee, Announces First Meeting Date

OKLAHOMA CITY (March 25th) – Senate Pro Tem Greg Treat, R-Oklahoma City, today named the members of his previously announced senate economic development select committee and announced the first meeting date.

Bill protecting PreK-5 students from sexual content passes State House

Bill Protecting PreK-5 Students from Sexual Content Passes House

OKLAHOMA CITY (March 21st) – Rep. Terry O'Donnell, R-Catoosa, today passed a bill in the House that would prohibit any classroom instruction on sexual orientation or gender identity in grades preK-5. Any classroom instruction on these topics in grades 6-12 must be age appropriate for students.

"Conversations about a young child's sexual orientation or gender are best addressed between the child and their parents," O'Donnell said. "This measure is intended to protect a parent's fundamental right of being in charge of the narrative and dialogue on these topics and frankly over everything their child is learning in school."   

O'Donnell said a parent could still choose to involve an educator in these discussions, but the measure would preclude broader classroom instruction on these matters.

House Bill 2546 specifies that classroom instruction by school personnel or third parties on sexual orientation or gender identity shall not occur in pre-kindergarten through grade five or in a manner that is not age appropriate or developmentally appropriate for students.

O'Donnell said the bill is similar to Florida's Parental Rights Act passed last year. He said other states also are pursuing similar legislation and it has the support of parents. His bill does not prohibit sex education courses in older grades, but parents do have the option of opting out their child from such instruction.

HB 2546 now moves to the state Senate where it is authored by Sen. Julie Daniels, R-Bartlesville.

Terry O'Donnell serves District 23 in the Oklahoma House of Representatives. His district includes parts of Rogers, Tulsa and Wagoner counties.

OCPA praises House lawmakers for defending parents’ rights

OKLAHOMA CITY (March  23, 2023)— Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs President Jonathan Small today praised members of the Oklahoma House of Representatives for voting to prevent school officials from discussing sexual issues with young children.

Earlier this week, House lawmakers approved House Bill 2546, by state Rep. Terry O’Donnell, R-Catoosa.

The bill simply states, “Classroom instruction by school personnel or third parties on sexual orientation or gender identity shall not occur in kindergarten through grade five or in a manner that is not age appropriate or developmentally appropriate for students.”

“Passage of this bill is a win for parents’ rights,” Small said. “Parents should have the right to determine the time, place and manner that issues like sexual orientation and gender identity will be discussed with their children. And most Oklahomans agree such discussions are inappropriate for the youngest children, such as those in kindergarten.”

The Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs is a free-market think tank that works to advance principles and policies that support free enterprise, limited government, individual initiative and personal responsibility.

Saturday, March 25, 2023

State Senate passes bill to require seat belts for backseat passengers under 16

I'll be honest... I thought this was already the law:

Senate approves bill to require backseat passengers under 16 to wear a seat belt

OKLAHOMA CITY (March 22nd) – The Senate approved Senate Bill 681 Tuesday, which requires any backseat passenger that is 16 years old or younger to wear a properly fastened seat belt. Sen. Roland Pederson, R-Burlington, authored the measure that aims to reduce the number of injuries and deaths of youth involved in car accidents.

House, Senate pass multiple bills to reform and tighten marijuana laws

This past week was a busy one in the Legislature as it relates to approving legislation addressing marijuana reforms. Since the recreational marijuana state question went down in flames, legislators have made it clear that they interpret the results as voters indicating that medical program is in need of reining in.

I've bundled several press releases on related legislation into this post. Read on down to get the following:

  • Senate approves bill (SB 808) to allow OMMA director to shut down marijuana operations causing environmental damage
  • Attorney General Drummond lauds passage of bills (HB 2095, SBs 806 and 913) targeting illegal marijuana grow operations
  • Municipalities to gain greater control over marijuana business zoning under bill (SB 801) passed by Senate
  • Senate passes marijuana reforms to better protect youth and patients (SBs 437, 440, 439, 264, 645, 813)

Friday, March 24, 2023

State Senate votes to codify birth control access

It really is Orwellian 'newspeak' to call drugs and treatments that are oftentimes abortifacient (destroying life after fertilization) "pro-family".

Senate Republican women push protections for birth control access

OKLAHOMA CITY (March 23rd) – The Senate overwhelmingly passed a pro-family measure Wednesday that protects women’s freedom to access birth control. Senate Bill 368, by Sen. Jessica Garvin, R-Duncan, and Rep. Toni Hasenbeck, R-Elgin, includes protections for contraceptive drugs, surgeries such as tubal ligation, and other treatments provided by authorized healthcare providers. It passed in the Senate with a 40-7 vote and now goes to the Oklahoma House of Representatives for consideration. All five Republican women in the Senate voted in favor of the bill.  

State Rep. Hasenbeck's 'Women's Bill of Rights' passes State House

Hasenbeck Passes Women's Bill of Rights

OKLAHOMA CITY (March 23rd) – The Oklahoma House of Representatives has approved the Women's Bill of Rights, preserving biological sex as a distinct legal category.

Rep. Toni Hasenbeck, R-Elgin, authored House Bill 1449, which clarifies how people of both biological sexes are treated under state law by defining 'sex' as a person's biological sex, whether male or female, at birth. It also forbids unfair sex discrimination but allows for recognition of the differences between sex on issues related to biology, privacy, safety or fairness.