Thursday, December 11, 2008

Rep Reynolds Right, Again

State Rep. Mike Reynolds, R-Oklahoma City, wants to remove the governor's authority to fill vacant statewide offices. Reynolds said that in light of allegations that Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich tried to sell an appointment to the now-vacant U.S. Senate seat in that state, he will file legislation that would allow Oklahoma voters, not the governor, to choose the person who fills any vacated statewide office. If any major office is vacated before the end of the officeholders current term that position would remain unfilled until the next general election under the proposal. Currently, the governor is allowed to appoint a successor. The Illinois scandal makes clear that the appointment power can easily be abused and weve had more than our share of corruption in Oklahoma already, said Reynolds, R-Oklahoma City. My proposal will simply remove that temptation and ensure the people of Oklahoma get to choose the people they want in office. Reynolds noted that Governor Henry actually endorsed a similar course of action when former State Auditor Jeff McMahan was under federal investigation. During that controversy, Henry urged McMahan to step aside during the investigation. McMahan later resigned from office after being convicted. Reynolds also noted that vacancies in the state Legislature are filled through the election process and not by gubernatorial appointment. In recent years, two major statewide officeholders have resigned due to legal troubles: McMahan and former Insurance Commissioner Carroll Fisher. Other vacancies have occurred in the offices of State Treasurer and Corporation Commissioner.-posted McCarville

1 comment:

BossHawg said...

Take away the Governor's power of appointment from an already extremely weak executive here in Oklahoma? I don't think so. And by executive I don't mean Brad Henry - I mean the office of the Governor - ranked as one of the weakest in the United States.
If anything, our governor's powers ought to be strengthened. Let's not let the corruption in blue states like New York and Illinois cause us to make some knee jerk reaction like Rep. (Press)Release, I mean Reynolds advocates here.