Friday, April 19, 2024

Lankford pens op-ed on why the US must continue to stand with Israel

Continue to pray for peace in Jerusalem

In the past six months, the Iranian regime has launched thousands of rockets at Israel through its proxies: Hamas, Hezbollah and the Houthis. Iran has also launched hundreds of attacks on American forces in Syria, Iraq and Yemen. Now, Iran has directly attacked Israel.

In addition to the ongoing threat now hurled at Israel from Iran, the US should clearly oppose the violence of Hamas terrorists and support the freedom for every hostage in Gaza. Some in Washington, DC, and around the world have forgotten that the current war in the Middle East started on Oct. 7 when Israel was brutally attacked by Hamas terrorists on the Jewish holiday of Shemini Atzeret. 

OCPA: Paycom and trial lawyers’ SB 1737 weaponizes courts against conservatives

Paycom and trial lawyers’ SB 1737 weaponizes courts against conservatives

OKLAHOMA CITY (April 18, 2024)—Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs President Jonathan Small issued the following statement after the passage of Senate Bill 1737, which was supported by trial lawyers and strongly supported by Paycom, an $11 billion publicly traded company with a track record of attacking conservatives in Oklahoma.

“SB 1737, which could provide a windfall to trial lawyers, is a bill that the author has said is supported by Paycom, which has had a track record of attacking conservatives in public and in the courts because Paycom and its CEO Chad Richison prefer the far-left’s plan for Oklahoma,” Small said.

“SB 1737 amends a current state statute to make it even easier to harass political opponents by allowing someone to pursue civil action for ‘online harassment’ that allegedly impacts a company’s intangible assets. 

OK House Republicans vote to protect Oklahomans from illegal immigration crisis; Dems oppose

Oklahoma House Republicans are aiming to do something to protect Oklahoma from Biden's illegal immigration crisis, while, naturally, the House Democrats oppose doing anything except embracing it.

House Republicans Vote to Protect Oklahomans from Illegal Immigration Crisis

OKLAHOMA CITY (April 18th) – Speaker Charles McCall, R-Atoka, today received passage of House Bill 4156 by a vote of 77-20. The legislation, aimed at addressing the illegal immigration crisis, creates the crime of impermissible occupation. Details include:

Gov. Stitt signs bill to protect privacy of homemade food producers

Gov. Stitt Signs Bill to Protect Privacy of Homemade Food Producers

OKLAHOMA CITY (April 18th) – Gov. Kevin Stitt on Thursday signed into law legislation that amends the Homemade Food Freedom Act to protect the private information of producers.

House Bill 2975, authored by Rep. Rick West, R-Heavener, and Sen. Warren Hamilton, R-McCurtain, will allow producers of homemade food products to obtain a registration number to affix to their product labels instead of the current requirement that they list their name, phone number and the physical address where the food is produced on all products sold. The $15 registration fee is voluntary.

Border Security First: Brecheen opposes 'America Last' foreign aid package rule; Hern against Ukraine funding

As Congress looks to send nearly $100,000,000 in foreign aid to Ukraine, Taiwan, and Israel (and Gaza, apparently), a meager few Republicans are saying "No" -- or at least, "not until our border is secure."

According to CBS:

The three foreign aid bills would provide $26.4 billion to support Israel, $60.8 billion to bolster Ukraine and $8.1 billion to counter China in the Indo-Pacific, including billions for Taiwan. The Israel measure also includes more than $9.1 billion to address Palestinian humanitarian needs, which Democrats said was necessary for their support. 

Read below for why Oklahoma Congressmen Josh Brecheen and Kevin Hern oppose all or part of this plan:

Monday, April 15, 2024

Small: No need to "fix" Oklahoma elections with "ranked choice" voting

No need to “fix” Oklahoma elections
By Jonathan Small

Oklahoma has one of the nation’s best election systems. We use paper ballots that allow hand recounts, our ballot machines are not Internet connected, and results are completely tallied on Election Day.

Yet some people want to get rid of that system and replace it with one notorious for voter errors, lengthy delays in counting, and growing public distrust of results – “ranked choice” voting.

In a ranked-choice voting system, voters designate their first choice in a race, their second choice, and so on down the ballot. If no candidate receives majority support, the second-choice votes of the candidate who finishes last are reallocated to the remaining candidates. If no candidate clears 50 percent of the vote at that time, the process repeats again and again until one candidate has received a majority.

This idea has been tried elsewhere and the results speak for themselves. The system is a disaster.

Thursday, April 11, 2024

Conservative Jonathan Hewitt launches candidacy for State House District 101

It's been a while since a conservative held the House District 101 seat; Jonathan Hewitt aims to change that, and is challenging incumbent Robert Manger in the GOP primary. No one else filed, so this is a winner-take-all head-to-head race:

Jonathan Hewitt Launches Candidacy for Oklahoma State Representative, District 101 

Choctaw, OK — 04/03/2024 — Today, Jonathan Hewitt proudly announces that he has filed for the position of Oklahoma State Representative for House District 101 with the Oklahoma State Election Board. Jonathan has a deep-rooted commitment to community service and an unwavering dedication to Oklahoman values, he steps forward to be a representative who will serve with integrity and transparency for his constituents. 

Speaker McCall, Pro Tem Treat announce legislation targeting illegal immigration crisis

Speaker McCall, Pro Temp Treat Announce Immigration Legislation Details

OKLAHOMA CITY (April 11th) – Speaker Charles McCall, R-Atoka, and Senate Pro Tempore Greg Treat, R-Oklahoma City, today announced the substance of what will be included in jointly agreed to legislation aimed at addressing the illegal immigration crisis here in Oklahoma. The legislation, which will be filed next week, creates the crime of impermissible occupation. Details include:

Gov. Stitt, Choctaw Nation finalize 10-year motor vehicle compact


OKLAHOMA CITY (April 8, 2024) - Governor Stitt announced the finalization of a motor vehicle compact with the Choctaw Nation. 

"I am happy to announce that we have finalized a 10-year car tag compact with the Choctaw Nation," said Gov. Stitt. "This is our 12th compact finalized with tribal governments since the end of 2023. I am grateful to the Chickasaw and Choctaw Nations for their ongoing partnership and willingness to come to an agreement on car tag compacts. These compacts continue the existing commitment to transparency and public safety. 

Small: OU assignment putting the 'boom' in 'Boomer Sooner'?

Putting the ‘boom’ in ‘Boomer Sooner’?
By Jonathan Small

Harvard Law School has drawn strong criticism for hosting a movie screening of “How to Blow Up a Pipeline,” based on the book of the same name by Andreas Malm, which advocates terrorism as a tool of environmental policy.

Notably, the movie’s website includes a “Take Action” page that includes a map of U.S. oil and gas pipelines.

But Harvard is not the only university where this nonsense has been given a platform.

At the University of Oklahoma, a graduate English seminar on “Forms of Protest” includes “How to Blow Up a Pipeline” among the assigned reading.

Associate Professor James Zeigler says most assignments are documents advocating for political change and nearly all class readings “are devoted to non-violence in principle and as a matter of strategy.” Andreas Malm’s book, he said, “is an exception.”

Campaign Finance and Election Threats task force releases recommendations for reform

Governor Stitt Announces Recommendations from Task Force on Campaign Finance and Election Threats

OKLAHOMA CITY (April 3, 2024) - Today, Governor Stitt announced the recommendations from his Task Force on Campaign Finance and Election Threats. The Task Force studied Oklahoma's ethics regulations and election administration, gathering data, reviewing case law, and conducting interviews to determine what changes are necessary to ensure the state's elections are secure.

Rep. McDugle, Sen. Kidd withdraw from reelection campaigns

Candidate filing was last week and there were a few surprises - two of which were incumbents with unorthodox strategies.

State Rep. Kevin McDugle (R-Broken Arrow) and State Sen. Chris Kidd (R-Waurika) both withdrew their candidacies after the filing period ended, ensuring that McDugle's hand-picked successor advances to the general election and narrowing the field to three Republicans in Kidd's district.

Thursday, April 04, 2024

Oklahoma political party chairs with advice for new candidates

With candidate filing for federal, state, and local office now in progress, I reached out to the chairs of Oklahoma's three political parties with a questionnaire on filing for office, and specifically regarding helpful considerations for those running or considering running for the first time:

Wednesday, April 03, 2024

Statewide candidate filing begins today

  Candidate filing at the Oklahoma State Capitol, 2018

Statewide Candidate Filing Begins April 3

(Oklahoma City) – The statewide candidate filing period is scheduled for April 3, 4, and 5, Oklahoma State Election Board Secretary Paul Ziriax announced today. Candidate filing hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. during the three-day period. Candidates filing for federal, state, and legislative offices will file with the Secretary of the State Election Board at the State Capitol, located at 2300 N. Lincoln Boulevard, Oklahoma City. Filing will take place on the ground floor of the State Capitol. Candidates filing for county offices will file at their local County Election Board office.

Tuesday, April 02, 2024

Small: A renewed focus on reading instruction is good news

A renewed focus on reading instruction
By Jonathan Small

Reading instruction is receiving lawmakers’ attention this year. That’s good news because Oklahoma has much ground to make up.

In 2011, lawmakers strengthened the state’s reading law, requiring students to retake the third grade if they were reading far below grade level, and providing remediation to struggling students.

That program drew wails from many public-school officials—but it worked. Reading performance improved dramatically from 2011 to 2015 on National Assessment of Education Progress (NAEP) tests.

By 2015, Oklahoma recorded the third-largest gain in the country on fourth-grade reading scores on NAEP and the state score was above the national average. 

But then lawmakers watered down the state’s third-grade reading law and made social promotion easier.

Monday, April 01, 2024

Congressman Brecheen holding telephone town hall on April 11th

Congressman Josh Brecheen To Host Telephone Town Hall on April 11th at 7 PM CT

Washington, D.C. – Congressman Josh Brecheen will be hosting a telephone town hall on April 11th at 7 PM CT. 

During the call, Congressman Brecheen will provide an update on some of the most pressing policy issues facing our country, including our more than $34 trillion national debt, and answer live questions from constituents.

Congressman Brecheen will also be hosting 14 in-person town halls from April 2nd to 4th. For times and locations, please click here.