Sunday, June 11, 2017

Words Mean Something

  Last Thursday evening at the Wagoner County Republican Fish Fry, Dr. Everett Piper was the keynote speaker.  This is a portion of what he said;

Words Do Mean Something


They have definitions. As thinking, moral agents, we intuitively know, for example, what the definition of "is" is, and we also know that changing and manipulating the meaning of words – turning them upside down – "is" called something; it "is" called lying. Lying about words and with words always brings ruin rather than reward. As the prophet Isaiah warned: "Woe unto him who calls evil good and good evil, darkness light and light darkness, bitter sweet and sweet bitter…" Words mean something, Dr. Everett Piper.
 
His presentation gave rise to these thoughts. Our world operates on the written and spoken word.  We communicate with words our thoughts, desires and emotions.  Words are written down so others can read them and understand things. Words are very powerful and once spoken or written down can never be taken back. If you read James 3:1-8, you will see that even back then people knew the power of words.  If words do not mean anything then nothing is sacred.  

As a freshman legislator I had some expectations going into my first session because I had experience with the workings of our state from being a school board member and actively working with those in government.  What I did not expect was the total abandonment of the words written in the Oklahoma State Constitution.

Below are the words from our State Constitution in regards to revenues.  Revenues as defined by a simple search on the internet will get you this:the income of a government from taxation, excise duties, customs, or other sources, appropriated to the payment of the public expenses.

Section V-33: Revenue bills - Origination - Amendment - Limitations on passage - Effective date - Submission to voters.
 A. All bills for raising revenue shall originate in the House of Representatives.  The Senate may propose amendments
 to revenue bills.    B. No revenue bill shall be passed during the five last days of the session.    C.  Any revenue bill originating in the House of Representatives shall not become effective until it has been referred to the people of the state at the next general election held throughout the state and shall become effective and be in force when it has been approved by a majority of the votes cast on the measure at such election and not otherwise, except as otherwise provided in subsection
 D of this section.    D. Any revenue bill originating in the House of Representatives may become law without
 being submitted to a vote of the people of the state if such bill receives the approval of three-fourths (3/4) of the membership of the House of Representatives and three-fourths (3/4) of the membership of the Senate and is submitted to the Governor for appropriate action.  Any such revenue bill shall not be subject to the emergency measure provision authorized in Section 58 of this Article and shall not become effective and be in force until ninety days after it has been approved by the Legislature, and acted on by the Governor.

Whether it is called a tax, fee, duty, tribute, custom, etc.., all are words that mean revenue. No bill should be passed in the last five days or final hours of the legislative session if the effect is revenue. It is not that hard to understand.

It was amazing to see colleagues argue for fees, taxes and every other form of "revenue" but deny that it had anything to do with Article V of the Oklahoma Constitution. As Dr. Piper says, lying about words with words will bring ruin rather than reward.  The ruin will be to our State Constitution.  If the courts do not rule the recent revenue measures unconstitutional then we may as well throw the Oklahoma Constitution in the trash. The words of Article V will have no meaning.

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Legislature Facing Supreme Court For Revenue (Tax) Violations

The state legislature faced their first legal challenge, today. A new revenue bill seeking over 200 million dollars in additional Revenue is being challenged by the tobacco industry and retailers. The suit claims that the revenue measure violated three points of the state constitution. The plaintiffs allege that it was;
1. neither a bill originated in the House of Representatives,
2. nor receive 75% support in both houses, 
3. nor was passed before the last five days of the legislative session.

Legislature Faces Supreme Court Scrutiny - Funding In Doubt



The state legislature faced their first legal challenge, today. A new revenue bill seeking over 200 million dollars in additional Revenue is being challenged by the tobacco industry and retailers. The suit claims that the revenue measure violated three points of the state constitution. The plaintiffs allege that it was;
1. neither a bill originated in the House of Representatives,
2. nor receive 75% support in both houses, 
3. nor was passed before the last five days of the legislative session.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

17 Candidates Seek 2 Legislative Seats

  The field of candidates has been large for the 2 vacant seats being decided, yet this summer.
  David Brumbaugh suddenly passed away this spring. His widow, Shelley Brumbaugh is seeking to complete his term. 
  Seven other candidates believe they are the better choice. In August, we will see what the voters of Broken Arrow and east Tulsa want to do.

  On June 20th, The Tulsa Area Republican Assembly will host a forum of the declared Republicans, at their monthly meeting.
See www.TulsaRepublicanAssembly.com for more information. 

  In Southern OKC metro, there is a special election to find a successor to Kyle Loveless. Mr. Loveless suddenly resigned and returned to private business while his ethics-related matters are awaiting possible litigation.

  Nine candidates believe they are the right solution to fill that unexpired term (3 years left).
Picture
A flag drapes the empty seat where David Brumbaugh once chaired the Republican Caucus of the state House.

Candidates for State Senator District 45 Special Election
Filed at the Oklahoma State Election Board
June 5-7, 2017
Republican
  • BRIAN WALTERS, 41, Oklahoma City, OK 
  • PAUL ROSINO, 54, Oklahoma City, OK 
  • DUANE SMITH, 62, Oklahoma City, OK 
  • KERRY PETTINGILL, 58, Mustang, OK 
  • SCOTT HARRIS, 33, Mustang, OK 
  • DIANE MEANS, 56, Oklahoma City, OK 
  • MATHEW HAMRICK, 36, Yukon, OK 
Democrat
  • STEVEN VINCENT, 51, Mustang, OK 
  • NOAH S. YNCLAN, 43, Oklahoma City, OK 
Candidates for State Representative District 76 Special Election
Filed at the Oklahoma State Election Board
June 5-7, 2017
Republican
  • CLIFF JOHNS, 37, Broken Arrow, OK
  • BRIAN ELLIOTT, 54, Broken Arrow, OK 
  • SHELLEY BRUMBAUGH, 53, Broken Arrow, OK 
  • ROSS FORD, 56, Broken Arrow, OK 74
  • SUZANNE DODSON, 36, Broken Arrow, OK
  • JESS GUTHRIE, 52, Broken Arrow, OK 
Democrat
  • CHRIS VANLANDINGHAM, 53, Broken Arrow, OK
  • FORREST MAYER, 24, Broken Arrow, OK 


from Sooner Politics.org - Editorial http://www.soonerpolitics.org/editorial/17-candidates-seek-2-legislative-seats

17 Candidates Seek 2 Legislative Seats


via Sooner Politics.org - Editorial Read the article at SoonerPolitics.org http://www.soonerpolitics.org/editorial/17-candidates-seek-2-legislative-seats