SoonerPolitics.org

Going Down Corruption's Road At The Capitol

Hickman’s failure to discipline the House becomes a Democrat talkingpoint

Consider this editorial, from the Oklahoman

  THE legislative process in Oklahoma has degenerated into a system of strong-arm, blackjack tactics or political payoffs.
  Administering the heavy-handed arm-twisting or doling out plums to get the required votes on the floor of the House or Senate for legislation geared, all too often, to benefit themselves or special interest groups are members of the leadership teams who run the Legislature.

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“I regret that I have but one life to give for my country!”

Senator Rob Standridge – Norman, OK
  We repeat these words and they sound great but what do they mean? We are certainly not standing in front of the executioner breathing our last words in defiance to a tyranny an ocean away, but we are patriots. We are just a little confused on how we fight a tyranny of our own making.

  I tell you that I pledge my life, fortune and sacred honor, but what does that mean. I promise this that I will not stop fighting to save what I see as a dying nation till my last breath is drawn, but how do I or we do that?

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House GOP Leaders Have Plan for People to Decide Fate of Ten Commandments Monument

File photo: Rep. Jon Echols is vice chairman of the House Judiciary Committee

source: Youtube
OKLAHOMA CITY – The state Supreme Court has ruled that the Ten Commandments monument must be removed from the grounds of the Capitol building.

  In a 7-2 decision, the state’s highest court ruled that the monument violated a provision banning the use of public property to benefit any religion.
  State House leaders, including the chairman and vice chairman of the House Judiciary Committee and chairman of the House Government Oversight and Accountability Committee, are proposing a plan to let the citizens of Oklahoma decide whether to keep the Ten Commandments monument.

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Only One of the Justices is a Republican Appointee

  Oklahoma has 9 justices serving on the supreme court. One has been there since Governor George Nigh appointed her.  There were 3 Republican Governors since then, but only one justice on the court is an appointee from the 17 years of Republican chief executives.
  A whopping 6 justices were appointed by former Governor Brad Henry. Two of them are the dissenters who sided with the monument. Since George Nigh left the governor’s mansion, Democrats have only occupied it for 12 years. And yet there are 8 justices to their legacy.

Justice Yvonne Kauger 
(1984 by Gov. George Nigh)

Justice Joseph Watt 
(1992 by Gov. David Walters)

Justice James Winchester
(2000 by Gov. Frank Keating)

Justice James Edmondson
(2003 by Henry)

Justice Tom Colbert 
(2004 by Henry)

Justice Steven Taylor 
(2004 by Henry)

Chief Justice John Reif
(2007 by Gov. Brad Henry)

Vice Chief Justice Douglas Combs ( 2010 by Henry)

Justice Noma Gurich 
(2011 by Henry)

The ruling: 

Concurring to Order removal and ban of the Ten Commandments monument.

  • Chief Justice John Reif 
  • Justice Yvonne Kauger
  • Justice Joseph Watt
  • Justice James Winchester
  • Justice James Edmondson
  • Justice Steven Taylor
  • Justice Noma Gurich

These seven are now the subjects of a legislator-led effort to impeach from the Supreme Court. 

DISSENTED

  • Vice Chief Justice Douglas Combs
  • Justice Tom Colbert

KOCO reports

 Multiple Oklahoma Republican representatives Tuesday called for judicial reform and the impeachment of seven Oklahoma Supreme Court justices who ruled that the 10 Commandments statue be removed from the Oklahoma Capitol, according to a news release.
  The representatives who support impeachment are Kevin Calvey, Oklahoma City; John Bennett, Sallisaw; Casey Murdock, Felt; Lewis Moore, Edmond; Dan Fisher, Yukon; and George Faught, Muskogee. Mike Sanders, Kingfisher, supports judicial reform but not impeachment.
  “Our state Supreme Court is playing politics by issuing rulings contrary to the Constitution, and contrary to the will of the clear majority of Oklahoma voters,” Calvey said in the release. “These Supreme Court justices are nothing more than politicians in black robes, masquerading as objective jurists. This ruling is the Court engaging in judicial bullying of the people of Oklahoma, pure and simple. It is time that the people chose jurists, rather than letting a tiny special interest group of lawyers at the Oklahoma Bar Association dictate who can and can’t be a judge. Read more at the KOCO story.

David Van Risseghem

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An open letter

To: Governor Mary Fallin, Attorney General Pruitt, and the Legislative leaders:
  PLEASE, I  implore you and your fellow lawmakers, especially Rep Mike Ritze; to appeal to the federal courts and seek an injunction barring the Oklahoma Supreme Court;s order.
The 1990s SCOTUS made a landmark ruling called “Equal Access”. It guaranteed federal constitutional rights to bible clubs, for  full access to school facilities and supervisors for their bible clubs.

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Will Chaplains Be Banned from The Oklahoma National Guard?

  Well it looks like the folks at the  Libertarian Party of Oklahoma have a starkly different view of the commandments monument than the Republican party; and this may curtail their effort to get signatures, to gain ballot access?

  In the original ruling on the commandments, the district court judge accepted the premise of the legislature. Here’s that legislative statement:

The Oklahoma legislation establishing the monument recognizes:

  • “That the Ten Commandments are an important component of the foundation of the laws and legal system of the United States of America and of the State of Oklahoma;   

  • That the courts of the United States of America and of various states frequently cite the Ten Commandments in published decisions; and 

  • Acknowledgements of the role played by the Ten Commandments in our nation’s heritage are common throughout America.”

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 The Privately-funded gift to the state of Oklahoma was rejected by the Oklahoma Supreme Court on a 7-2  decision. The ruling opinion said;

” the placement of the monument on the grounds of the state Capitol violate Article 2, Section 5, of the Oklahoma Constitution which prohibits the use of public money or property to directly or indirectly benefit a “church denomination or system of religion.”

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