Archive for December, 2007

Good Economic News to Start Second Century

December 31, 2007

By Senator Jay Paul Gumm, D-Durant

Happy New Year, everybody! As Oklahoma enters the first full year of its second century as a state, we received some very good news about our economy.

We learned last week that Oklahoma’s personal income grew faster than the national average during the third quarter of 2007. That increase was driven primarily by growth in the oil and gas industry, according to a report by the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis.

By driving around southern Oklahoma, you can see evidence of this good news in new drilling rigs and seismic crews all over the countryside. The result of the new gas exploration in our region is showing up in our state’s economy. We also see it with the creation of new energy jobs and the distribution of royalty checks across the area.

Oklahoma’s personal income grew 1.8 percent in the third quarter, topping the national rate of 1.4 percent. Oklahoma ranked fifth among the states in personal income growth for the third quarter. For a state whose income has lagged behind most of the nation, this is extraordinary news for our economic future.

The report showed that the largest increase in Oklahoma’s personal income came from the mining sector, which includes the oil and gas industry. The report noted that Oklahoma saw a 0.26-percent increase in that industry sector, compared to a national average of 0.03 percent.

That means the increase in personal income driven by the oil and gas industry in Oklahoma was more than eight times the national average. The good news, however, did not end with the energy industry. Read more…

Loveless to Make "Major Grassroots Milestone Announcement"

December 31, 2007

From the Kyle Loveless for State Senate Campaign Newsletter:

In mid January, I will be proud to announce several things, which will separate my campaign from other Republicans in the field. Others have been talking a lot, but we have not seen much of anything across the district. From the time I announced, I am proud to have made so many new friends all across the district. From Mustang’s Positive Posse meetings, to Moore and Westmoore Football games, it has been so much fun, talking to people and there have been several things that I have learned.

First, people don’t expect much from their state government, however, they appreciate meeting me on their terms, and on their doorsteps.

Second, yes, I am a Loveless, like Loveless shoes. Some people that know me, know me from my political experience in different functions, but don’t know about the transformation and growth of my family business. It truly is a Oklahoma treasure that I am proud to continue that tradition. However, I have learned that small businesses here in Oklahoma really have a challenge in front of them and it seems that there are not that many people out there that understand what small businesses go through. I do and look forward to bringing change for all of us.

Finally, people want a true conservative. – I tell people, I am unabashedly PRO-Life, NRA Member, will help fight illegal immigration. I will help end the strangle hold liberal trial lawyers have had on the State Senate and the government of our great state. However, most importantly people don’t care usually what I have to say, they want to know that I will listen.

Oklahoma Energy: Successful Past, Bright Future

December 31, 2007

By: Dana Murphy

In one hundred years Oklahoma has gone from being the new kid on the block to being a leader in energy. Most of us know the story of Oklahoma’s oil boom in the early 1900s. Back then Tulsa was the place for all things oil. Getty, Skelly, Kerr, McGee, Tom Slick, Helmerich and Payne…the list goes on and on of famous oil men turning black gold into jobs, revenue and a future for our state.

A century later the boom has moved from oil to natural gas and throughout Oklahoma. Chesapeake, Devon, Newfield, SandRidge and many others are the newest kids on the block, bringing jobs, taxes, royalty income and prosperity through new, unconventional reservoirs. Oil and natural gas again rank number one economically in Oklahoma.

Oklahoma continues to lead on the national energy front. Based on 2006 data, Oklahoma ranked third in natural gas production and fifth in oil production in the United States.

Oklahoma State University, The University of Oklahoma and The University of Tulsa are among the elite universities educating tomorrow’s energy leaders. The Noble Foundation and other groups are at the forefront of developing today’s and tomorrow’s fuels. Consumers have benefited greatly, as Oklahoma’s energy prices consistently rank among the nation’s lowest.

While the fuel on the shelf is still natural gas and oil, keeping that fuel readily available involves more advanced technology and significantly greater expense. Oklahomans and Americans must encourage further domestic oil and gas development, and make more efficient use of these precious resources in our vehicles, homes and businesses.

In an era of declining oil and gas resources, alternative fuels are becoming more vital to our future. Currently, we’re developing wind power, solar energy, hydrogen power and bio fuels. Coal, once a staple of energy, is being reinvented through improving technology as a source of cleaner, increasingly efficient power.

Oklahomans have always been innovative, persevering and resourceful —a proud tradition which continues. With the potential to provide 10 percent of America’s electricity needs, Oklahoma already ranks sixth nationally for wind farm capacity. OG&E, AEP/PSO, the Oklahoma Municipal Power Authority and a growing number of Oklahoma Electric Cooperatives are helping lead the way with wind power.

It’s up to Oklahoma to advance and maximize fossil fuel extraction, while simultaneously cultivating new energy sources. We have the talent, the will and the knowledge to make Oklahoma a vital player on today’s and tomorrow’s world energy stage.

We must encourage our universities, energy companies and power providers to research, test and move to market, every form of viable, renewable energy possible

.

Government has a significant role to play through working with the public and private sectors to initiate, facilitate and provide the right incentives for research and development. According to former Secretary of Energy Bob Sullivan, a significant, untapped Oklahoma resource also lies in utilizing the knowledge of senior managers and retirees of energy companies to help move us forward.

Challenge and excitement lie ahead for the energy industry and consumers alike. We’re watching the slow but steady addition of alternative fuels along with development of new unconventional reservoirs of oil and natural gas. Oklahoma, with its rich tradition of leadership in the energy industry, is poised to continue that greatness in the coming years.

The more we use power wisely and conserve, the more we lower our personal energy costs, protect our environment, maximize use of all energy forms and improve national security through reducing our dependence on foreign oil.

Working together, the people of Oklahoma and Oklahoma’s energy industry can lead our nation and the world to a future with exciting energy opportunities.

Dana Murphy is a fifth generation Oklahoman who is a republican candidate for the Corporation Commission seat currently held by Jim Roth. Murphy is a geologist, an attorney and a former Commission administrative law judge.

State Complains of Revenue Shortage

December 28, 2007

OKPNS wasn’t going to write about this at first but we would be remiss not too for our many readers. Governor Brad Henry and the state have complained that the state is short on revenue to fix our roads and to fund our schools.

OKPNS suggests that these “State Leaders” get serious about ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION and its impact on our state. We would have more money to spend on these things if we didn’t have any influx of illegals clogging up our school system and DMV. I mean have you been to the DMV lately? I have and let me tell you something it makes me appreciate Rep. Terrill even more!

The DMV is filled with Illegal Aliens getting drivers licenses and we already know that our school system has to ear the brunt with the ESL classes. What irked me the most was the woman who asked in ENGLISH for a DMV Book in SPANISH.

OKPNS suggest that our Governor get serious about this ILLEGAL Immigration issue and then we will have more money to put into education, infrastructure, and other things.

John McCain 2008 Announces National Catholics For McCain Leadership Team

December 28, 2007
OKPNS has very mixed feelings about John McCain. I mean this is the same guy who supported the Presidents Immigration Reform bill. Since then he has said that he was wrong and he heard us loud and clear. I can respect a man who admits his mistakes and corrects them. Senator McCain is a very principled man and I think his service to our country has prepared him to deal with the tough issues facing our country. I mean you really have to admire someone who spent time as a POW and didn’t break.

Former Governor Frank Keating (R-OK), also National Co-Chair of Catholics for McCain said, “John McCain can uniquely appeal to Catholics with his strong, 24-year pro-life record, his stand for traditional values and school choice, his proven leadership in defending America, and his demonstrated ability to appeal to independent-minded voters. These are exactly the type of qualities that Catholic voters will be looking for in 2008.”

In a joint statement, Governor Keating and Senator Brownback added: “In this election, with so much at stake, we need a leader who will help transform history to extend and uphold the rights and dignity of each and every child of God. John McCain is that leader.”

John McCain expressed his appreciation and stated: “I am very pleased to have the support of this distinguished coalition of Catholic leaders. I am proud to stand side-by-side with Catholics on many of the most critical issues of our day: defending the sanctity of human life, upholding traditional marriage, expanding educational choice, and defending America from the threats that we face around the globe. I have fought my entire life to protect religious freedom and human rights around the world. I look forward to working with these Catholic leaders in the weeks and months ahead as we take our shared values to the White House.”

Catholics for McCain will play an active role in educating and communicating with fellow Catholics about why John McCain is the best candidate to successfully promote Catholic values in the upcoming election.

Read More

Mary Fallin Introduces Legislation To Exempt Overtime Pay From Income Taxes

December 28, 2007

Washington, DC — U.S. Rep. Mary Fallin, R-Oklahoma City, introduced legislation yesterday that would exclude overtime pay from gross income, making it exempt from the federal income tax. The bill immediately attracted several cosponsors and has been endorsed by Americans for Tax Reform.

After the bill’s introduction, Fallin released the following statement:

“This bill would help to ensure that those who work the hardest get taxed the least. Exempting overtime pay from the federal income tax will reward hard work and help families save money. At a time when Americans are struggling to cope with rising gasoline prices and spiraling healthcare costs, the need to reduce their tax burden is obvious.


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One-Man Gridlock: Meet Tom Coburn, Senate’s ‘Dr. No’

December 28, 2007

Oklahoma Conservative Specializes in the ‘Hold’; Stopping 90 Bills in 2007
By SARAH LUECK

WASHINGTON — On Tuesday afternoon, when most senators were preparing to leave Washington for the holiday recess, Tom Coburn was declaring his intention to stick around.

“The floor’s going to be open,” said the 59-year-old Oklahoma Republican. “I’m going to have to be here…to try to stop stuff.”

Stopping stuff is Sen. Coburn’s specialty. In a Congress that has had trouble passing even the simplest legislation, Sen. Coburn, who proudly wears the nickname “Dr. No,” is a one-man gridlock machine. This year, the senator, who indeed is a medical doctor, single-handedly blocked or slowed more than 90 bills, driving lawmakers on both sides of the aisle to distraction.

He blocked a ban on genetic discrimination by health insurers. He thwarted a bill to set up a program to track patients with Lou Gehrig’s disease. Also nixed: an effort to promote safe Internet use by children and a resolution to honor the late environmentalist Rachel Carson on the 100th anniversary of her birth.
[Tom Coburn]

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Legislative recap for 2007: More laws

December 28, 2007

By Jaclyn Houghton
CNHI News Service


Thomas Jefferson once said: “Laws made by common consent must not be trampled on by individuals.”


But some issues, like many of those discussed and passed by Oklahoma legislators in 2007, did not receive the consent of all legislators.

The legislative session became part of history. The Senate ended up with a 24-24 tie between Democrats and Republicans. The leaders of both parties devised a power-sharing agreement to deal with the situation that never previously occurred in Oklahoma history.

Several leaders were surprised at how well the process worked.

Read More

US Senator Tom Coburn Seeks a More Conservative Senate

December 27, 2007

As a citizen legislator, Dr. Coburn has pledged to serve no more than two terms in the Senate and to continue to care for patients. He is a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, the Indian Affairs Committee and the Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions.

Prior to his election to the Senate, Dr. Coburn represented Oklahoma’s Second Congressional District in the House of Representatives from 1995 through 2001. He was first elected in 1994, then re-elected in 1996 and 1998, becoming the first Republican to hold the seat for consecutive terms. Dr. Coburn retired from Congress in 2001, fulfilling his pledge to serve no more than three terms in the House.

During his tenure in the House, Dr. Coburn wrote and passed far-reaching legislation. These include laws to expand seniors’ health care options, to protect access to home health care in rural areas and to allow Americans to access cheaper medications from Canada and other nations. Dr. Coburn also wrote a law intended to prevent baby AIDS. The Wall Street Journal said about the law, “In 10 long years of AIDS politics and funding, this is actually the first legislation to pass in this country that will rescue babies.” He also wrote a law to renew and reform federal AIDS care programs. In 2002, President George Bush chose Dr. Coburn to serve as co-chair of the President’s Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS (PACHA).

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Update: Boy Wonder Is Not Even Close!!!!!!

December 27, 2007

It was the greatest thing reading the Tulsa World poll this morning. State Senator Andrew Rice the Democrats Lone Ranger is just that, alone in his bid to unseat our states senior Senator. Who would have imagined Senator Inhofe trouncing over the Boy Wonder? Who would imagine nearly half of the Democrats polled voting for Senator Inhofe? Well the Rice campaign sure didn’t think so. OKPNS knows that Senator Inhofe no matter how much liberals hate him, stands up for the ordinary man and woman.

Results from Oklahoma pollster SoonerPoll.com released this morning in the Tulsa World show Senator Inhofe in a strong position in the 2008 election.

“Sixty percent of those surveyed favored Inhofe over Rice, with just 19 percent going for the young Democrat and 21 percent undecided. Inhofe was the pick of three of every four Republicans surveyed and nearly half the Democrats.

Rice, meanwhile, had the support of only 28 percent of his own party. “

Analysis

Primary Election Possible: A steady drumbeat of internet forums and blogs have carried the message that State Senator Andrew Rice, right now the lone Democrat opponent to Senator Inhofe, is potentially facing a primary challenge. Many outspoken Democrat party insiders believe a primary is wise so a more moderate candidate who appeals to a larger segment of Oklahomans can win the nomination. As the Tulsa World story indicates, Rice would be very vulnerable to a serious primary challenger: “Rice, meanwhile, had the support of only 28 percent of his own party.”

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