WOULD IT BE TO MUCH TO ASK THAT OUR OWN LEGISLATORS FOLLOW THE RULE OF THE LAW?
By the Watchman.
Our state legislature is spending like a bunch of drunk sailors. Most people in America understand the basics of finances. You should never spend more than you can afford. So why is our legislature doing so and doing it in violation of the State Constitution and the blessing of the Governor on top of that. Why hasn't the Attorney General stepped in and brought this to a halt? What kind of idiocy is ruling our state? This is idiotic.
The first article of interest we found was this Update: House, Senate committees approve $6.9 billion general appropriations bill | Capitol Report | tulsaworld.com. Finally they reach a possible agreement, or did them. Instead of a tobacco tax of $1.50 they changed it to a fee of $1.50. There hope is to avoid the fact that they passed the deadline for revenue raising measures by the chancing of a few words. Most of the legislation being passed with less than the required supermajority that is required by law. We are a nation of laws and a state of laws. Since when did the elected members of our state feel that they had the authority to break the law anytime they felt like it didn't suit them.
The next article we found was this GOP pivots, moves budget needing only 51 House votes - NonDoc. It appears that they were unable to get the necessary votes required by law to get these measures approved as tax increases. They did a little rewording and all of a sudden they are fees not taxes. You two fools running the House and Senate must think we the people are stupid. Regardless of the label you put on it a fee or a tax is still a tax. It also is a revenue raising measure that is being brought up in the last five days of the session and as such unconstitutional.
The next article of interest we found was this 9 Investigates: Lawmakers Consider Creating Veterans Registry - News9.com - Oklahoma City, OK - News, Weather, Video and Sport. We can see the need for a program such as this. We can also understand the desire to have such a program in place. What we can't understand is why come up with some program like this when you can't even produce a legal budget in the required amount of time. That doesn't even consider the growth in government and the added expense to the tax payers for such a program. Letting the Oklahoma Department of Veterans Affairs may be problematic. We are still waiting for the results of the death of the veteran in the Talahina facility.
We aren't the only ones questioning the legality of the budget bills being passed this week. We found this article The Okie » News9: Questions Continue On Constitutionality Of Remaining Revenue Measures. None of the four items remaining have received the required three quarters approval of each chamber for passage. None was passed prior to the last five legislative days of the year. That makes the passage of any of them unconstitutional. The Oklahoma Council on Public Affairs, a think tank, has already indicated that they have every intention of taking these increases to court once they become law. We support their effort.
Then we found this article MuskogeePolitico.com: State Senate passes $6.8B budget; House vote likely tomorrow. Now this article was dated Wednesday the 24th of May 2017. We have since learned that the House passed its version on Thursday morning. The bills were far different from each other and it did not receive an immediate vote in the Senate. We may still see a special session held to get a budget completed. Why are they wasting the time on something they know is illegal?
The next article of interest we found was this MuskogeePolitico.com: Gov. Fallin comments on FY2018 Budget Agreement. We find her statement to be a little premature. The House and Senate Minority Leaders both denied that a deal had been reached. This is evident by the drastic and illegal measures they are taking to pass these bills pass the deadline date and without the required three quarters mandatory approval of each chamber. The most troubling part of her statement is that they didn't finish filling the gap in the budget. They only left it about $400 million dollars short of being closed. Imagine that, $400 million short of filling an imaginary hole to begin with. What a bunch of baffoons.
Now if that wasn't enough gluttony for you from our overfed lawmakers at the capital we found this article MuskogeePolitico.com: House Committee rejects bill to cut spending on non-essential trinkets and swag. They are perfectly willing to tax anything and everything you can possibly think of, but they find that giving out the little trinkets to the citizens, mostly lobbyist, who visit their offices can't be touched. What an asinine thing to do. Every single one of them should lose their seats next election for this reason alone.
The next item we found was the chart below. Will somebody please explain to us why after being told by the state treasurer over the last two years or longer of the decrease in incoming revenue that these people who claim they know everything can still spend money we don't have and break the law while doing it? This is a disgrace.
The next article of interest we found was this http://www.soonerpolitics.org/editorial/the-looming-supreme-court-ruling-on-revenue-bills. We can't help but wonder if any of these individuals thought about the court cost and legal fees involved in taking this to court and they lose? Did they not realize that the verdict of overthrowing these bills would leave the state without a budget? Are they aware that they are still going to have to come back for a special session? How much of the tax payers money are they willing to waste?
There is only one conclusion that can be drawn from the actions of our legislators. They are incompetent, greedy power hungry fools. They all have taken an oath of office and have violated it by voting yes to passing any of these revenue raising bills after the deadline. Those who did wouldn't make a pimple on a good man's butt. If they had any respect for their fellow Oklahomans they would resign from office.