Tuesday, July 31, 2007
Inhofe Posts Video Message On Iraq
Oklahoma's Senior Senator, James Inhofe, recently posted this youtube video in support of American troops in Iraq.
Labels: Sen. InhofePosted at 7/31/2007 12:07:00 PM |
Sen. Coburn: "The Problem In Washington Is Not Lobbyists, But Members of Congress
Senator Coburn: “Rather than opening the secret chambers of government to the public, this new Congress has opted to change the locks. This bill, which was negotiated in secret, guts key earmark reforms that both houses of Congress approved overwhelmingly. Unfortunately, this process shows that Congress’s 28 percent approval rating is well-deserved. (Chart below from Sen. Coburn)
“The problem in Washington is not lobbyists, but members of Congress. This bill solves the wrong problem and creates new ways to hide earmarks. For example, it is ludicrous to give the Majority Leader of either party, not the objective Senate parliamentarian, new unilateral powers to police earmarks. It is also obscene that the Senate gutted a key reform preventing senators from directing earmarks to family members. The new language mirrors existing Senate rules which have done nothing to prevent these serious conflicts of interest. “In the last election, the American people said they wanted the earmark favor factory to be shut down, not turned over to new management [emphasis added mine]. As our Republican majority learned, breaking promises has consequences. Congress first broke its promise to impose an earmark moratorium by offering 32,000 earmarks. Now Congress has signaled its determination to continue the secretive earmark favor factory.”
The Hill: "Dems unveil ethics plan" (Comments by Sen. Coburn)Posted at 7/31/2007 11:07:00 AM |
President Conrad: A Liberal Solution to Nomination Gridlock.
By Ernest Istook That’s the message from key senators who seem determined to oppose any Bush appointee who won’t promise to toe the liberal line. It’s tough enough to get Senate approval of judges who aren’t card-carrying members of the ACLU. Now, it seems, the Senate will balk at blessing the president’s pick for budget director unless the nominee promises upfront to rubber stamp whatever spending spree liberal congressional leaders care to indulge in. Read more...Posted at 7/31/2007 10:54:00 AM |
Rep. Cole On YouTube Debates
NRCC Chairman Tom Cole spoke with Ed Morrissey on BlogTalkRadio on July 30, 2007 about the YouTube debate. Related: National Journal: "GOP Campaign Chief Touts YouTube Debate"Posted at 7/31/2007 10:30:00 AM |Sunday, July 29, 2007
Liberal Foshee Using Union Buddies to Remove Opponent's Yard Signs?
We received a tip from a reader recently regarding the removal and return of political yard signs from his lawn. The reader recounts the story: "As I was pulling into my garage one afternoon, I saw a guy messing with my yard signs. He claimed he was with the OKC planning commission and was instructed to take down signs out of some people’s yards because they were in the city’s easement. I asked the gentleman where was the easement and he replied "about fifteen feet from the curb." Mind you, I live in a residential housing addition, not on a major street. I told him I had never heard of the city taking or moving signs out of people’s yards. The guy rudely interrupts me and says he was just doing his job and that if he "sees it again he will do again." After I complained to the planning commission, I woke up the next morning to find all of my previously taken signs stacked on my driveway. This makes me wonder if Foshee has got some of his union goons doing his bidding?" Foshee's campaign still must not be doing well if he is resorting to dirty tricks this early.Posted at 7/29/2007 09:41:00 AM |
Anatomy of a Scandal
By Gary Jones OKGOP Chairman 1) Larry Witt and Steve Phipps conspired to funnel corporate contributions into the 2002 State Auditor campaign of Jeff McMahan. FBI affidavits and witnesses have testified that such money was paid to them for the purpose making said contributions. Estimated totals range from $75,000-$100,000. These funds made up a large portion of McMahan's total contributions and had a significant impact on the election results. 2) Steve Phipps met on numerous occasions in the office of the State Auditor with legislators including Mike Mass to discuss and arrange for state funds to be funneled into a scam non-profit foundation, Rural Development Foundation, located in an abstract company owned by Phipps and Gene Stripe in Antlers, Oklahoma. Both Mass and Phipps have pleaded guilty to federal charges and are now waiting sentencing to connection to the scheme. 3) After denying for months McMahan admitted to going on fishing and gambling trips paid for by Phipps. Such trips would constitute something of value received by an individual regulated by McMahan and his office and may be grounds for removal from office. 4) Duane Smith from the Oklahoma Water Resources Board has reported that he was called into a meeting with the State Auditor Jeff McMahan, Mike Mass and Steve Phipps. During the meeting Smith said he was advised that Mass had put wording in the agency appropriation bill to funnel funds to a trust authority setup by Phipps to aid in selling water from Lake Eufaula. McMahan advised Smith to help get that done and he would make the audit look clean. In 2006 McMahan asked the governor to perform an audit on OFRW. The audit failed to reveal the connection between McMahan and Phipps the principle person being audited and also failed to disclose items which should have been reported and in effect provided the cover-up McMahan had promised. 5) Larry Witt (Ry-son Oil) is seeking to purchase shares in several abstract companies owned by Steve Phipps. The sale of Phipps' shares can not take place without approval of Jeff McMahan, State Auditor. 6) Witt was named in the university housing bond scandal involving Senate president Pro-Temp Mike Morgan. Morgan is also said to responsible for funneling state funds to but Stipe and Phipps' train that is sitting and rusting in Guthrie. Jeff McMahan and his office should be removed from the approval process as there exist a clear conflict of interest by McMahan in this matter. A cause of action should be filed against Phipps, Stipe and Witt to recover state funds illegally obtained. The corporate assets of Phipps Enterprises and Corporate Finance Group should be frozen until such action has been litigated. Related: ObserverBlog: "The Education of Jeff McMahan" Posted at 7/29/2007 09:10:00 AM |Saturday, July 28, 2007
Rep. Reynolds Believes Corporation Commissioner's Campaign Contributions to Attorney General Violated State Law
Further proof that Drew Edmondson thinks he's above the law? FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Contact: State Rep. Mike Reynolds Capitol: (405) 557-7337 OKLAHOMA CITY (July 27, 2007) - It appears newly appointed Corporation Commissioner Jim Roth has violated state law by giving illegal campaign contributions to Attorney General Drew Edmondson, state Representative Mike Reynolds said today. "While reviewing Attorney General Drew Edmondson's recent letter to the Ethics Commission admitting to being an illegal conduit for political contributions I discovered that not only did he give illegal contributions but he received them as well," said Reynolds, R-Oklahoma City. "The issue at hand is two different contributions given from the campaign account of County Commissioner Jim Roth to the campaign account of Drew Edmondson. After careful scrutiny of the ethics rules, applicable statutes and discussions with officials in the State Ethics Commission, I believe Roth's contributions violated state law." Reynolds has routinely been a watchdog over various filings at the Ethics Commission and is recognized as an expert in ethics database issues. The contributions in question were given in October 2005 and May 2006. Both contributions were recorded in Edmondson's reports as being from the Jim Roth for County Commissioner campaign committee. "Under normal circumstances I would have gone to the Attorney General and asked for an investigation into the matter since it included highly placed public officials, but I obviously was not going to ask the A.G. to investigate himself," Reynolds said. The South Oklahoma City lawmaker also noted that he could not find any reference to the contributions in Roth's ethics reports. "I hope Commissioner Roth was not attempting to hide these contributions because he did not list them on line 16a of his County Commissioner ethics report which is also required by law," Reynolds said.Posted at 7/28/2007 09:22:00 PM |Thursday, July 26, 2007
Senate Vocabulary Lesson
By Daphne Retter The phrase of the day, brought to you by the United States Senate, is: “It’s not personal.” What it means: “It’s personal.” Take the squabble between Sens. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) and Ben Nelson (D-Neb.). It started in October 2005, when Coburn went after a Nelson-requested earmark. In the course of that debate — ultimately won by Nelson — the two made a deal whereby Coburn would talk to Nelson whenever he publicly sought to cut one of the Nebraskan’s projects. Nelson said he was shocked to discover that Coburn filed an amendment on July 13 to strip out a $7.5 million earmark for 21st Century Systems Inc. (21CSI), a Nebraska-based defense contractor, even though the former hadn’t yet made his case to leave the earmark alone. When Nelson saw Coburn on the Senate floor July 18, he told Coburn, “I thought we had a deal!” Read more...
Labels: Sen. Tom CoburnPosted at 7/26/2007 07:15:00 PM |
Follow The Money: Stipe, Phipps Business Details Raise Questions
From the McAlester News-Capital: By James Beaty Senior Editor A court-appointed receiver in the lawsuit between former District 7 state Sen. Gene Stipe and his estranged business partner, Steve Phipps, has demanded that National Pet Products pay $310,000 in delinquent accounts to Phipps Enterprises, Inc. “The deadline for a response has passed and lawsuits are being prepared to recover such substantial funds,” receiver Kraettli Q. Epperson said in documents filed at the Pittsburg County Courthouse. National Pet Products is the dog food plant on the north side of McAlester built on property sold by Stipe, according to court documents and other records. In his report, Epperson said Phipps Enterprises Inc. also owes a substantial amount of taxes. Phipps Enterprises, Inc., is identified in court documents as the company owned by Stipe, of McAlester, and Phipps, who is from the Kiowa area. Read more... Posted at 7/26/2007 07:04:00 PM |
No "Conspiracy Theory": OKC Mayor Signed North American Union Document
Mayor Mick Cornett endorsed "The Declaration of North American Integration" By Paul Joseph Watson Ridiculing claims by the establishment media that the North American Union plan is a "conspiracy theory," an activist has brought to light a document signed by the Mayor of Oklahoma City, which was also approved by 90 other officials, that endorses an economic and political integration of the U.S. with Canada and Mexico. Jerome Corsi has the goods, The endorsement by a major city mayor of a document described as "The Declaration of North American Integration" represents a long-term effort by local governments to bypass state and federal governments and work directly with Mexico and Canada to create agreements that integrate the continent below the radar screen, charges an activist. Adam Rott, founder of watchdog blog Oklahoma Corridor Watch, brought to light the document signed by Mayor Mick Cornett. Read more... Related: Worldnet Daily: OKC mayor washes hands of North American Union: "It was a pretty stupid thing to get involved with"
Labels: Mick CornettPosted at 7/26/2007 06:37:00 PM |
Fallin Chosen as "Most 50 Beautiful People on Capitol Hill"
From The Hill: When Rep. Mary Fallin (R-Okla.) was in her 20s, she was an extra in a movie starring Molly Ringwald. Fallin, 52, doesn’t remember the film’s title, but was also an extra in several other independent, “walk-by-type” movies and did some modeling, too. The stylish blonde, with bangs and blue eyes, is still a knockout. “I’m 5-foot-6, but I’m not going to tell you my weight,” Fallin said, giggling. Self-consciousness aside, Fallin is in great shape. She lifts weights, jogs on her treadmill and goes to the gym when she can. Read more...Monday, July 23, 2007
Labels: Rep. FallinPosted at 7/26/2007 06:20:00 PM |
The Patriot takes on Mayor Kathy Taylor and the City of Tulsa
By Matt Llewellyn, "The Patriot" For our readers across the nation and around the world (yes, we have subscribers in Australia and Great Britain now) I am talking about our local Mayor for the city of Tulsa, Oklahoma, Kathy Taylor. Mayor Taylor recently succeeded in her goal to spend $76,000,000.00 to move city hall to a new building, despite the fact that the current building in only 4 decades or so old. Sure, the old building needs extensive repairs, but, why were these repairs not being kept up with as they broke. Now I will be fair, I am sure previous Mayors allowed the building to decline in repair as well. Now, correct me if I am wrong but if a restaurant fails to make required repairs are they not fined? If a home owner with children fails to keep their home safe and make needed repairs are they not brought up to everything short of the Supreme Court and accused of being everything but a child of God? If you, citizen of Tulsa, own a home and fail to control the height of your lawn you will be fined by the city of Tulsa. I am not positive what the exact height is but let's assume it's around 12 inches just to be fair. That paragraph represents written law, violation of the law and then penalty for breaking the law. Fairly easy concept right? If you break the law you are punished be it financially or by incarceration. Well, if you are a citizen that is. If you are an elected official you can allow the law to be broken under your authority and not be punished. Read more...
Labels: Kathy TaylorPosted at 7/23/2007 02:49:00 PM |
10 Questions: About Clergy Sex Abuse
Posted by Katie Couric Monday, the Archdiocese of Los Angeles and Cardinal Roger Mahony agreed to the biggest settlement yet in a national scandal that has engufled the Catholic Church. It agreed to pay $660 million to over 500 alleged victims of clergy sex abuse. It's another sad chapter in a sad story for the Catholic Church in America, one that begin when the Boston abuse scandal was revealed in 2002. To put this in context, and get a better understanding of what it means and how the Church has coped with this crisis, we decided to pose this week's 10 Questions to Frank Keating. Keating is the former governor of Oklahoma who was appointed chairman of the National Review Board, a panel created by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops to make sure churches are complying with new rules designed to prevent the abuse of children by priests and religious. His one-year term on the board was marked by controversy and sharp disagreements with some of the Church hierarchy -- most notably, with the Archbishop of Los Angeles, Cardinal Mahony. Read more...
Labels: Frank KeatingPosted at 7/23/2007 02:29:00 PM |
New Attorney-General Model Harms Oklahoma
By Andrew Spioropoulos EDMOND — Oklahoma’s lawsuit-reform debate sadly has revealed that honorable and well-meaning public officials like Gov. Brad Henry and Attorney General Drew Edmondson, when push comes to shove, side with the most reactionary elements of the trial bar. But this year’s debate revealed a problem even more disturbing than opposition to legal reform. Edmondson has imported to Oklahoma a new model of the office of attorney general that is destructive both to the rule of law and to the welfare of the state. Read more...Posted at 7/23/2007 02:19:00 PM |
Shame of the Senate
By Robert Novak WASHINGTON -- When Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid picked up his ball and went home following his staged all-night session last week, he saved from possible embarrassment one of the least regular members of his Democratic caucus: Sen. Ben Nelson of Nebraska. Reform Republican Sen. Tom Coburn had ready a Defense authorization bill amendment to remove Nelson's earmark funding a Nebraska-based company whose officials include Nelson's son. Such an effort became impossible when Reid pulled down the bill. When the Defense authorization bill came up last week, Coburn prepared amendments to eliminate the Nelson earmark and the most notorious earmark now pending in Congress: Rep. John Murtha's proposed $23 million for the National Drug Intelligence Center in his Pennsylvania district. Reid's game plan to satisfy anti-war activists with an all-night debate averted debate for now on these two earmarks. Read more... Related: "Medical Marijuana under attack by fascists..." Posted at 7/23/2007 02:07:00 PM |Tuesday, July 17, 2007
OK Legislators' Blog 7/15/07
Senator Jay Paul Gumm: "Hardball politics is nothing new; they have been used by both sides. However, when hardball politics become more important than standing up for the Oklahoma’s values, then something is terribly wrong." Read more... By Rep. Jason Murphey: "This year I enjoyed relating to House District 31 constituents some very good news regarding progress in reforming state government. Some of that progress included the following: accelerating the rate of income tax reduction, strengthening state immigration enforcement laws, cutting most taxpayer subsidies for abortion, passing education reform to encourage new charter schools, appropriating less in the state budget this year as opposed to last year, requiring that documentation of state spending be placed online, calling on state retirement systems to divest of investments with governments of terrorist-sponsoring nations and watching as the Oklahoma Department of Transportation developed a long term plan for paving roads that appears to be free of political influence." Read more...Posted at 7/17/2007 05:23:00 PM |
Oklahoma County Democrats to Hold District 1 Candidate Forum
(OKLAHOMA CITY)Oklahoma County Democratic Party will have a candidate forum on Tuesday, July 24, 7:00pm, at the Springlake MetroTech auditorium. The Democratic candidates for county commission, district 1, have been invited to speak in advance of the primary election on Tuesday, August 14. The vacancy is due to the appointment of the former County Commissioner Jim Roth to the state-wide office of Corporation Commissioner. The Democratic candidates in alphabetical order are: Bart Bates, former legislator Fannie Bates, teacher and activist Debbie Blackburn, former legislator Willa Johnson, Oklahoma City council member Ann Simank, Oklahoma City council member The candidate receiving the most votes will advance to the general election on Tuesday, September 11, 2007. There will be no run-off election for this position; only a plurality is necessary to determine the winner. Springlake MetroTech is located at 1900 Springlake Drive, just north of NE 36 and M.L. King Boulevard in Oklahoma City. All interested voters are invited to attend. Related The Red Dirt Political Report: Roth settling into role as new corporation commissioner Posted at 7/17/2007 05:14:00 PM |
Former Governor Walters to Speak at Canadian County Democrats’ Second Annual Bean Supper
Former Governor David Walters, owner and president of Walters Power International based in Oklahoma City, will be the keynote speaker at the Canadian County Democrats Annual Bean Supper from 6:00-9:00 p.m. on July 28 at Redlands Community College Conference Center. YUKON – More than 100 Democrats from all over the state are expected to attend the Canadian County Democrats second annual Bean Supper on Sat., July 28. Oklahoma Governor David Walters will be the featured keynote speaker at the event from 6:00-9:00 p.m., at Redlands Community College Conference Center. The facility is located one mile north of I-40 at 1300 S. Country Club Road in El Reno. Walters, who served as Democratic Governor of Oklahoma from 1991 to 1995, is currently owner and president of Walters Power International, a trading business specializing in electrical power plants and generation equipment. The company is based in Oklahoma City. “We are honored to have Governor Walters headline our annual bean supper this year,” Canadian County Democrats Chair Jody Harlan said. “Our ticket sales nearly doubled overnight when people heard that he was going to be our speaker.” The public is invited to attend, but tickets must be reserved in advance and are available on a first come, first served basis. The cost is $25 per person. Tables seating six guests are $125. Part of the proceeds will launch a new scholarship program for Young Democrats in Canadian County. To register or get more information about the Candidate County Democrats’ Annual Bean Supper, contact Canadian County Democrats Secretary Carol Ruth at (405) 361-4005 or firstname.lastname@example.org or Shirley Burton at (405) 354-5754 or email@example.com.
Labels: David WalterPosted at 7/17/2007 03:06:00 PM |
Wonkette Gossip RoundUp
From Wonkette and Roll Call: "Senate handyman Tim McClintock might have saved a man from drowning, but it took a lowly intern to rescue Sen. Tom Coburn’s aide Drew Berky from an eternity of being locked in the conference room" Related The Hays Daily News: Oklahoma senator criticizes government mascots Posted at 7/17/2007 02:39:00 PM |
"Three Nations & One Economy?"
From Oklahoma Corridor Watch: “If we can have but three nations and one economy,” said Oklahoma City mayor Mick Cornettt “I think it would be much easier for us to solve a lot of the social problems with the end migration.” Mayor Cornett went on to say in the video that since Oklahoma City is situated on along I-35, which is “really apart of that NAFTA Corridor,” the potential for economic development on a global scale is a real possibility. I-35 received the NAFTA Superhighway designation by the Oklahoma Legislature in 1995, and there are currently plans by the Oklahoma Department of Transportation to expand I-35 into a 10-lane, multi-modal corridor in the Oklahoma City area. Watch video clip here.Posted at 7/17/2007 02:05:00 PM |
Message from Chairman Jones
Green Country GOP Delegation Step Up By Gary Jones Most of the time we don’t see a leader’s true grit until a tragedy or crisis hit. Well, Oklahoma has been hit with a crisis, and I’m proud to say our leaders stepped up to the plate. Over the last few weeks, thousands of Oklahomans have been displaced or evacuated from their homes due to record-breaking flood conditions across Oklahoma. Northeastern Oklahoma has been the most heavily effected area of the state. Washington County has sustained significant damage and has already been approved for individual assistance by President Bush. State Senator John Ford and State Representatives Steve Martin and Earl Sears, who represent the majority of the affected areas, have stepped up to the plate, worked with first responders and emergency officials and showed true leadership exactly when residents needed it the most. “I am so pleased to serve with Rep. Steve Martin and Rep. Earl Sears in Washington and Nowata Counties,” said Senator Ford. “We have worked closely together during this disaster with the local, state and Federal government agencies to help the victims receive the necessary services to start the recovery process. “People have lost so much and this disaster has affected our communities deeply,” said Ford. “I will be working with Representatives Martin and Sears to ensure that all available resources are dedicated to helping protect the Washington and Nowata County area residents, and that the area is included in any forthcoming disaster declarations.”Posted at 7/17/2007 01:29:00 PM |Friday, July 13, 2007
Rep. Tom Cole at Sen. Wilcoxson 2007 Annual Coming Together
Burns Hargis to Oklahoma State University Is a "Done Deal"
Sources tell OKPNS that Burns Hargis to Oklahoma State University is a done deal. The sources say mega-bucks OSU Godfather T. Boone Pickens has signed off on the deal and Hargis will indeed become OSU's next President as soon as he is eligible. The former regent must wait for a period of one year before he is technically eligible to be the president. So what happens to KFOR's Flashpoint program? Hargis has been the rock on which the program was built, always having to pull fat pant-load Mike Turpin along. Hargis is always entertaining, but Turpin is one of the most disliked television personalities in Oklahoma history. While the show could easily withstand Turpin's exit, it will be much harder to find an entertaining replacement for Hargis: there are no good television-ready Republican replacements currently living in Oklahoma. The program failed in Tulsa, and the cheap New York Times company, which has put KFOR up for sale, has been losing money on the show for years. It's not even the most watched political show in Oklahoma: KWTV's "Your Vote Counts" segment, which is faster and more entertaining, draws twice as many viewers. So enjoy the current format: whether or not KFOR tries to save the show or not, it's curtains for either entertainment or Flashpoint altogether.Posted at 7/13/2007 02:52:00 PM |Tuesday, July 10, 2007
How The Mighty Have Fallen
This is no intended slight on Congressman Lucas, but him being the featured speaker for a fundraiser for the former Speaker of the House, tells how low Hastert has fallen since the Democrats' regained control of the House. Does anyone know who he is outside of Oklahoma?
BY BEACON NEWS STAFF U.S. Rep. Dennis Hastert's annual Farmers' Picnic is set for Friday at the Sandwich Fairgrounds. Oklahoma Republican Rep. Frank Lucas will be the main speaker at the fundraiser, scheduled to begin at 5:30 p.m. The event is sponsored by the Hastert for Congress Committee. "Congressman Lucas has been a leading Republican voice for agriculture in the United States Congress for more than 10 years, and is now a driving force in moving our agenda through Congress," Hastert said.
Labels: Cong. Frank LucasPosted at 7/10/2007 02:28:00 PM |
The Conservative Democrat - Dan Boren
Washington was buzzing over a heated meeting between President Bush and 11 moderate Republicans who told the president that their support for the war was slipping fast. That same day in May, Rep. Dan Boren and a group of fellow moderate-to-conservative Democrats made the trip to the White House to hear Bush out on Iraq. The tone, according to Boren, was quite different. "Over the last six or seven years, he's really been knocked as someone who does not try to build bridges with Democrats, and I think over the last six months to a year, his office has really tried to reach out to members like me," Boren said. The congressman even has his own dedicated White House liaison officer, Marty McGuinness, whose phone line is always open. The White House knows that Boren is a man trapped between the conservative constituents of his eastern Oklahoma district and a Democratic Party pushing hard to seize control of the war in Iraq and bring it to a close. Read more...Posted at 7/10/2007 01:52:00 PM |
Tulsa Is On The Leading Edge of the Immigration “War”
By JonJayRay Below is an extensive excerpt from an even more extensive article. Tulsa is on the leading edge of local and state efforts to crack down on illegal immigration following passage by the Oklahoma Legislature of what is arguably the toughest anti-illegal immigration measure in the nation. The Tulsa City Council also embraced the get-tough approach by adopting a resolution calling on police officers to check the immigration status of “all suspected illegal aliens.” Those actions have sparked a fierce political battle, spread fear among Hispanics — both legal residents and those in the country illegally — and triggered an angry public face-off between demonstrators on either side of the great divide. Among the longtime residents shaken by the changes engulfing his city is Gary Rutledge, an MSNBC.com reader who said the demographic shift took his family and friends by surprise. “It’s happened so quickly and our neighborhoods have changed so rapidly,” said Rutledge, a political science professor at nearby Rogers State University. In East Tulsa, just across the main thoroughfare from his comfortable brick home, the broad avenues are now peppered with signs in Spanish and malls catering to Latino shoppers — offering everything from soccer wear and piñatas to check cashing services and Latin pop music. “That whole part of the city has become a miniature Juarez or Tijuana or whatever you want to call it,” said Rutledge. Read more... Related: Thirdwavedave: "Rep. Randy Terrill, author of Oklahoma's Immigration Reform Bill, Will Be Interviewed Tonight on "The Andrea Shea-King Show". (Florida) meeciteeworker: "Questions for Her Majesty"Posted at 7/10/2007 01:30:00 PM |
Senate Leaders Break Impasse Over 9/11 Commission Bill
Senate leaders reached agreement yesterday to move a massive bill implementing unfulfilled recommendations of the 9/11 commission to a conference with the House, paving the way for negotiators to wrap up work on the legislation as early as this week, according to lawmakers and their aides. "Republicans did drop their objection to taking the bill into conference," said a spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev. Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Okla., had objected to going to conference, saying the bill did not include a provision for auditing how billions of dollars in homeland security grants are spent. Democratic aides said Coburn's concerns would be addressed in the underlying bill. Coburn's office acknowledged an agreement was reached to go to conference but declined further comment. Read more... Posted at 7/10/2007 01:22:00 PM |
A Deal for the Public: If You Win, You Lose
Adam Liptak, the national legal correspondent of The New York Times, writes the “Sidebar” column for the newspaper. The column covers and considers developments in the law. Liptak weighs in on Drew Edmondson and the "poultrygate" scandal the Oklahoma press refuses to cover. When Oklahoma’s attorney general decided to sue about a dozen poultry companies, saying they had polluted the state’s waterways with chicken manure, he did not turn to lawyers on his staff or hire an outside law firm that would bill in the usual way, by the hour. Instead, Attorney General W. A. Drew Edmondson went into business with three plaintiffs’ firms, agreeing to pay them as much as half of any money they recovered from the poultry companies. In courts around the nation, in cases involving tobacco, lead paint and guns, state attorneys general have been outsourcing government power to private lawyers. Business groups hate the development, in part because they would rather not litigate against sophisticated plaintiffs’ lawyers on a level legal playing field. But the business groups make broader points as well. “When someone who is exercising the state’s power stands to gain from that, it violates due process,” said Jay T. Jorgensen, a lawyer for one of the chicken companies. “If you got pulled over by a cop and the cop made more money if he gave you a ticket and less if he didn’t, no one would think that was fair.” Read more... Posted at 7/10/2007 11:11:00 AM |
Consolidating State Government
By Rep. Jason Murphey One of this summer's most exciting events in the House of Representatives will be a comprehensive interim study designed to discover areas in which government agencies can be consolidated. The study will explore the possibility of bringing certain state agencies and commissions under the wings of other state entities, with the goal of streamlining efforts and using taxpayer dollars more effectively. Read more...Posted at 7/10/2007 11:04:00 AM |