Blog

17 Feb
0

RELEASE: DNC Statement on Confirmation of Pruitt to EPA

DNC Statement on Confirmation of Pruitt to EPA

WASHINGTON – DNC Interim Chair Donna Brazile issued the following statement:

“There’s a hungry fox guarding the henhouse at our Environmental Protection Agency. Scott Pruitt is a climate science denier who has spent his career in the pocket of the fossil fuel industry, actively fighting on behalf of some of the worst air and water polluters on earth. As Attorney General of Oklahoma, he sued the EPA more than a dozen times and even went so far as to paste a letter from one of Oklahoma’s biggest oil and gas companies onto his official state government letterhead to oppose federal pollution regulations.

“Now Donald Trump and the GOP have put him in charge of the very agency that he seems to despise. Pruitt is worse than unqualified – he’s openly hostile to the idea of protecting our environment. The devastating consequences of this appointment may be felt for generations to come.”

###

17 Feb
0

RELEASE: House Democratic Caucus The People Have Spoken on Criminal Justice Reform!

The People Have Spoken on Criminal Justice Reform!

By Rep. Dr. George E. Young, Sr. Oklahoma House Democratic Caucus Vice Chair

I am so appreciative of the support that is mounting for the idea that has taken the form of legislation I filed this year (House Bill 1476) for discussion and debate concerning a very important and significant issue within our criminal justice system: eliminating contemporary “debtors’ prisons”.

The very idea of penalizing someone because of their economic status is simply unacceptable. In statute and in law it is unlawful, yet in practice it occurs. Let me quickly say that part of the problem is that as a legislator, and among legislators, we have failed our criminal justice system by not giving them the financial foundation to do the work we call on them to do, so they have had to find other ways to pay their bills.

My first year in office, I was asked to come into the office of the chair of the committee in which my bill for fees and fines had been assigned. The chair, an attorney, said to me, “George, what you are asking for is a fundamental change to the criminal justice system.” I thought about it and what he said sounded so large that I recoiled for a moment, but then quickly I thought (and please forgive this former pastor), “Damn right!”

We cannot continue to have a prison system that is 108% to 120% over capacity and 35% understaffed. A prison system that ranks highest in the nation per capita in imprisonment of women and men. A prison system that has an African American population of 30%-35% when we constitute less than 8% of the state population.

We cannot have legislators who, for whatever reason, see the voice of the people (on State Questions 780 and 781) as an uninformed vote, and deem it necessary to take it upon themselves to do what’s best for them as some helpless child. I have experienced that enough in my lifetime.

Moses had one sermon every day he went to Pharaoh’s house and it was simply, “Let My People Go!” I have one sermon as given to me by the citizens of Oklahoma: “We Have Spoken!”

-30-

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100008135227880

MIKE W. RAY
Media Director, Democratic Caucus
Oklahoma House of Representatives
(405) 962-7819 office
(405) 245-4411 mobile

17 Feb
0

RELEASE: DNC Statement on GOP’s Rush to Confirm Pruitt Before Public Records Release

DNC Statement on GOP’s Rush to Confirm Pruitt Before Public Records Release  

WASHINGTON – DNC National Press Secretary Adrienne Watson issued the following statement after an Oklahoma judge ordered Scott Pruitt, the state’s Attorney General and Trump’s nominee to head the EPA, to release thousands of emails related to his communication with the fossil fuel industry by Tuesday:

“The fact that Republicans are still planning to vote on Scott Pruitt today is outrageous and a total dereliction of their most basic responsibilities to the public. For over two years, Pruitt repeatedly ignored public records requests, and now, when a judge orders him to come clean about his cozy ties to the pollution lobby, the GOP is in a mad dash to ram his nomination through before the Senate has a chance to look at the new documents. Looks like big oil, coal and gas got the government they paid for.”

###

16 Feb
0

RELEASE: Daycare Tax Credit for Military Families Endorsed by House A&B Subcommittee

Daycare Tax Credit for Military Families Endorsed by House A&B Subcommittee

OKLAHOMA CITY (16 February 2017) – Legislation to create an income tax credit for daycare expenses incurred by families of deployed military personnel cleared a House of Representatives panel recently.

House Bill 1312 by Rep. Collin Walke, D-Oklahoma City, was endorsed by the House Appropriations and Budget Subcommittee on Finance by a vote of 7-0 Feb. 15. The measure now advances to the full A&B Committee for consideration.

The bill would authorize a tax credit for daycare expenditures on a qualifying dependent child during any period when a member of the armed services is deployed “to another location in support of combat, contingency operation, or natural disaster” for 30 or more consecutive days, during which time the service member is unable to be accompanied by his/her family at government expense.

The proposed credit could not be used to reduce the claimant’s tax liability “to less than zero,” HB 1312 decrees.

Also, the legislation would apply to dependent children 12 or younger at the time the daycare expenses were paid, and permissible expenses would be limited to the care of a child “for not more than 12 hours per day.”

The bill defines “servicemember” to mean a member of the Armed Forces of the United States, the Reserve Corps of the nation’s Armed Forces, or the Oklahoma National Guard.

“I believe the tax loss to the state treasury from my proposal would be relatively low, but it would nevertheless be a valuable benefit to military families whenever a parent is deployed to a combat zone or a disaster area for an extended period,” Walke said.

– 30 –

MIKE W. RAY
Media Director, Democratic Caucus
Oklahoma House of Representatives
(405) 962-7819 office
(405) 245-4411 mobile

16 Feb
0

RELEASE: DNC Statement – Trump’s Belief That Flynn Was Right on Sanctions Fits With Pattern of Pro-Putin Policies

Trump’s Belief That Flynn Was Right on Sanctions Fits With Pattern of Pro-Putin Policies

Washington, DC – DNC national press secretary Adrienne Watson released the following statement in response to President Trump:

“The fact that Donald Trump believes General Flynn was right to do what he did — undermining U.S. sanctions on Russia — is outrageous and part of a larger pattern of disturbing pro-Putin policies of Trump’s, including undermining NATO and refusing to personally condemn Russian aggression in Ukraine.

The DNC previously issued the below statement when Trump refused to unequivocally deny his staff was in contact with Russia during his campaign.

“Trump refused to say his staff was not in contact with the Kremlin during the campaign. His silence speaks volumes and reinforces the need for an independent, transparent investigation through a special congressional select committee, or 9/11 commission and an independent counsel out of the Department of Justice.”