Saturday, August 2, 2008

No this is not a Pro-Obama campaign ad and no he is not the next coming.

Dems Turn Out Lights Gop Keep Talking

August 01, 2008Categories: Leadership
House Dems turn out the lights but GOP keeps talking
Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and the Democrats adjourned the House, turned off the lights and killed the microphones, but Republicans are still on the floor talking gas prices.
Minority Leader John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) and other GOP leaders opposed the motion to adjourn the House, arguing that Pelosi's refusal to schedule a vote allowing offshore drilling is hurting the American economy. They have refused to leave the floor after the adjournment motion passed at 11:23 a.m., and they are busy bashing Pelosi and her fellow Democrats for leaving town for the August recess.
At one point, the lights went off in the House and the microphones were turned off in the chamber, meaning Republicans were talking in the dark. But as Rep. John Shadegg (R-Ariz..) was speaking, the lights went back on and the microphones were turned on shortly afterward.
But C-SPAN, which has no control over the cameras in the chamber, has stopped broadcasting the House floor, meaning no one was witnessing this except the assembled Republicans, their aides, and one Democrat, Rep. Dennis J. Kucinich (D-Ohio), who has now left.
Only about a half-dozen Republicans were on the floor when this began, but the crowd has grown to about 20, according to Patrick O'Connor.

Obama Took American Flag Off The Tail Of His Plane

Friday, August 1, 2008

Was It Really A Weak Voter Turn Out

In today's Transcript the editor is critical of the voter turn out. In my opinion, he left out a few facts. To start with, all registered voters are not contacted by the candidates. Because no one candidate has unlimited funds, only the voters that are most likely to vote get information about a candidate. Unfortunately, only 20% of registered voters take their right to free speech and voting serious. I would rather have informed voters rather than a large voter turnout of uninformed voters. It is not always about quantity.

OEA Wants To Waste Even More Of Our Money

Improving Oklahoma Education Doesn’t Mean Throwing Good Money After Bad, Says Americans for Prosperity

OKLAHOMA CITY – Americans for Prosperity (AFP) today said throwing more money at Oklahoma schools is not the solution for education challenges faced by the state. The statement comes on the heels of an announcement by the Oklahoma Education Association (OEA) that it would request an additional $850 million from taxpayers to increase per pupil spending.

“We believe that public school funding is either ‘too high’ or ‘about right’ just like the 64 percent of Oklahomans that responded to a recent Friedman Foundation survey,” said AFP Oklahoma Director Stuart Jolly. “Oklahoma schools have enough money. It’s just not being spent wisely.”

According to a recent AFP analysis, just 12 years ago Oklahoma’s entire state budget was $3.4 billion. Today, the education budget alone is $3.8 billion, meaning the state spends more today on Oklahoma’s education system than it did on all state programs just 12 years ago. “And what do Oklahoma students have to show for it?” Jolly asked. “The same grade they did 12 years ago – F.”

Meanwhile, education administrative costs in Oklahoma are three times the average amount for the region. In 2006, Oklahoma spent $753 per student while the average for the region was $242 per student. Oklahoma spends three times more on school administration than Arkansas ($215), Kansas ($258), or Texas ($252). Just 59.7 percent of education dollars are actually spent in the classroom. Putting $500 more per student back in the classroom – or $10,000 per classroom – is a first step toward addressing the state’s failing education system, AFP contends.

Since 1985, Oklahoma’s student population has grown by 7.1 percent, but the administration to take care of those students has grown by 46 percent! And the education budget during this same period has grown from $1.4 billion to $3.8 billion. And where does Oklahoma rank today nationally? The same place it did in 1985 – near the bottom.

AFP is calling for a larger percentage of education dollars to be spent in the classroom and for greater choice in education. When taxpayers and families have more choices, schools will improve.

“Taxpayers shouldn’t be forced to throw good money after bad,” Jolly concluded. “Our schools must spend the dollars we have entrusted to them wisely before they even think about asking for more. Ultimately, all families should have more choices when it comes to what schools their children go to.”

Americans for Prosperity (AFP) is a nationwide organization of citizen leaders committed to advancing every individual’s right to economic freedom and opportunity. AFP believes reducing the size and scope of government is the best safeguard to ensuring individual productivity and prosperity for all Americans. AFP educates and engages citizens in support of restraining state and federal government growth, and returning government to its constitutional limits. For more information, visit

Erroneous Information: Will They Now Apologize?

Erroneous information about another Republican candidate, whether intentional or negligent, can be equally damaging. Many good people eschew politics because they treasure their good names. Recently two women have sent out emails that are my case in point and serves as another exchange why many good candidates for public office decline.

A simple inquiry concerning the “Duties of the County Clerk” would have avoided spreading false, malicious and unprivileged publications. To imply an elected official is not following the law is a very serious charge. Also, to claim that Tammy Howard has zero experience in the clerk’s office is another baseless charge. A simple call to the County Court House confirming the number of years Tammy Howard, has worked in the clerk’s office. Tammy also has been our Clerk for the past year. That alone is called experience.

Rather than trying to hurt one candidate with lies, why not try to build up the candidate you are supporting. In the future, be responsible advocates for your Republican candidates. And these ladies owe an apology to Tammy Howard for the ruthlessness and baseless charges. In realty, when you have to lie about one candidate, how is one to know that you are not lying about the candidate you are supporting?

Unfortunately in Cleveland County, we have a couple of people that are only happy if they are making slanderous charges against another Republican. This has been going on for years and now is a good time to stop it. People know who these people are and will know longer pay any attention to undocumented charges. Let’s work together and help all Republicans. It is important that we vote and it is also important that we know the truth about our candidates. I hope these individuals will stop trying to hurt the Republican Party. We will now start a run-off for our Republican candidates so please let’s all vote for the candidate of our choice without making false and malicious comments about a candidate we personally dislike. Lets get united, as one party.


Thursday, July 31, 2008

Nichols Opponment Receives Money Outside Norman

July 31, 2008
For immediate release




Lawyer $$ Filling Campaign Coffers in Tulsa, Stillwater, Norman

OKLAHOMA CITY, With their influence at the State Capitol in jeopardy of being greatly diminished with the election of a Republican majority in the State Senate, trial lawyers across the state are almost singularly funding key Democrat campaigns, according to campaign finance reports filed with the Oklahoma Ethics Commission. Specifically, Senator Nancy Riley of Tulsa and candidates Robert Murphy of Stillwater and Diane Drum of Norman have received over 70% of their financial support from lawyers outside of their districts.

Without the largesse of big-time lawyers who have a vested interest in seeing Republicans defeated at the polls, candidates like Nancy Riley, Robert Murphy and Diane Drum would barely have enough campaign money to buy that high-priced gasoline for which Riley is so grateful, said Randy Swanson, Executive Director of the Oklahoma Republican Senatorial Committee. The very lawyers who have financed Brad Henry's campaigns, resulting in his consistent vetoes of lawsuit reform legislation are now funding Democrat Senate candidates across the state and Democrat campaign committees.

In the case of Nancy Riley, their investment is already paying dividends, due to the fact that she has flip-flopped numerous times on the important tort reform legislation we need to keep our business climate and medical services thriving, Swanson said. She was for it before she was against it.

An analysis of Ethics reports over the past three reporting periods (4th quarter 2007,1st & 2nd quarters 2008) indicate the following startling statistics:

Senator Nancy Riley of Tulsa has raised $125,065 in individual, reportable (over $50) contributions. Of that figure, $85,425 has been raised from trial lawyers. Add the $5,400 her campaign has raised from lobbyists and Democrat legislators, such special interests account for 72.6% of Riley?s financial support.

Candidate Robert Murphy of Stillwater, the former judge, only recently announced his candidacy, and has filed one Ethics report. In that report, Murphy reports raising $51,600 from individuals, of which $35,900 69.6% -- has come from lawyers, most from outside of Stillwater or Payne County.

Candidate Diane Drum of Norman has raised $74,485 from individuals of which $56,115 has come from lawyers, most of whom live outside Norman and Cleveland County, accounting for 75.3% of her financial receipts.

None of the above figures include contributions from liberal, pro-labor, anti-tort reform PACs, which are proving to be very generous to Democrat candidates and committees.

In a tactic indicative of haphazard campaign reporting or intentional misrepresentation, many lawyers list their occupations on these reports as Self Employed, Consultant, or some other innocuous title. However, a simple online search of their names belies their true occupations, and exposes the magnitude of the support from this special interest group enjoyed by Democrats.

This is just the tip of the iceberg,Swanson said. A vast majority of the lawyers who have contributed to these and other Democrat Senate candidates have not yet given the legal maximum amount, so there are hundreds of thousands of dollars still on the table for their cause.

With almost three of every four dollars in Democrat campaigns coming from the Democrat Party's most affluent and reliable special interest group, the Trial Bar is making its last, bold stand to maintain its stranglehold on the Capitol, and the State Senate is their final beachhead. They won't go down without a fight.

Oklahoma voters need to be aware of who controls the Democrats in the Senate, and to whom they are beholden, Swanson concluded.

- 30 -

Senate District Race 45

Senate District race 45 shaping up.

Senate District 45 goes to runoff
Rumor has it that Melinda Daugherty, Marty Gormley and Jerry Foshee will announce that they will be endorsing Col. Russell in the runoff.

The race for Senate District 45 is going to a runoff. Lt. Colonel Steve Russell received the most votes last Tuesday and Kyle Loveless was a distance second. Now the race will be decided in a runoff. No Democrat filed for the seat.

Kyle Loveless has been running for the past two years and was an early favorite in the race. Loveless was the former Chairman of the Cleveland County Republican Party and his two year term as chairman was filled with many problems. He has also made headlines for federal campaign finance violations that occurred when he worked as campaign manager for Ernest Istook.

Lt. Colonel Russell actually got into the race late. He is well known around the country due to his distinguished military career, which included taking part in the capture of Saddam Hussein. Russell also founded the organization "Vets for Victory." His message caught on quickly and he kept gaining momentum. Poll numbers being tossed around the district had Russell finishing in third place behind Jerry Foshee. Of course, all the polls had Kyle finishing first. When the night was over, Russell received 41% of the votes, while Loveless was a distant second with 27% of the votes.

Pick your candidate and vote on Tuesday, August 26.


Murphy A Watchdog For All Oklahomans


Republican Corporation Commission Candidate Dana
Murphy defeated opponent Rob Johnson today in the Republican Primary,
setting her to face Democrat Jim Roth in the General Election in November.

"Everywhere I go Oklahomans have told me that they are tired of politics
as usual. They want elected officials who have experience and are highly
qualified, not career politicians looking for the next rung in the
political ladder," said Murphy. "I've given a consistent message to all
Oklahomans. I have the energy to get the job done, experience to do the job
right, and a commitment to excellence?not because it should be done, but
because it CAN be done."

Murphy credits her win to a strong grassroots effort in both rural and
urban Oklahoma, along with hard-working fundraising efforts and travel all
across Oklahoma.

"Experienced, honest, visionary leadership is a must if we are to grow our
state in reaching its energy potential. As a geologist, oil and gas
attorney and former OCC Administrative Law Judge, I am ready to step up and
help lead the charge to make Oklahoma an energy innovator in the U.S. and
the world," said Murphy.

"Oklahomans need to know that I am someone who will be a watchdog to
everyday Oklahomans and can be trusted to make independent decisions which
are fair and in the best interests of Oklahomans; someone who understands
both rural and urban areas and the impact of energy on both family and
business budgets and ways of life."

"With energy costs spiraling to all-time highs, we must develop Oklahoma
resources in new and different ways to provide today and tomorrow's
affordable power. Oil and gas will always be important, but we must advance
the use of wind, hydro, bio-fuels, solar and other evolving fuel sources in
Oklahoma. Keeping Oklahomans' utility rates affordable and reliable will
always be important to me."

Murphy worked as a geologist for over ten years, and even gave expert
geological testimony at the Corporation Commission. She earned her law
degree while working as a geologist during the day and attending law school
at night, and is now an energy attorney owning and operating her own legal
practice in Edmond. She also served as a Corporation Commission
Administrative Law Judge for nearly six years hearing over 5,000 cases. For
more information about Murphy, please visit her Web site at or call her office at 405-607-6677.

Aaron Stiles A Winner

Aaron Stiles did the unthinkable by winning HD 45 race without a run off.
Just a few days, prior to the election, the Transcript did a very negative
article about Aaron. The article was full of innuendos and after the article
a lot of people counted Aaron out of the race.

Aaron and his campaign manager, Joe Fairbanks, did not let the negative
articles interfere with his campaign strategy. Aaron's message of a
Conservative voice for HD 45, just kept on trucking.

I have never seen a candidate with so many grassroots volunteers work so
diligently. Aaron was out spent substantially yet his door to door knocking
never stopped.

It's time for everyone to resonate around Aaron and help him become the next
HD 45 State Representative.

Wallace Collins did not get one bill passed during the last legislative
session. Wallace Collins did not even support a bill that he campaigned on
the "grocery tax". It is time for Collins to go!


Cleveland County Sheriff Race

Sheriff Race gets tight

The Sheriff's race is down to two very popular individuals. Joe Lester,
former Police Chief at OU and Mark Hamm, former Sheriff Deputy and currently
Chief of Security for Toby Keith.

Both individuals have a strong base of supporters and it looks to be a close

Let's hear from you about who you believe is the most qualified.

Congressman Tom Cole Open House August 8th

Congressman Cole invites

August 8th at 5:00 PM Congressman Tom Cole and Chairman Roger Warren will be
hosting an open house at our new Cleveland County Republican Party office.
615 24th Ave SW (corner of 24th & Boyd) Please keep this date open.


Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Precinct Chair Attacks Fellow Republican

Fellow Republicans:

On this Primary election day I feel compelled to write an open letter sharing my concerns about our local Republican Party and how fellow Republicans are treating each other. Ronald Reagan, perhaps our most widely respected and adored President, was famous for his Eleventh Commandment, "Thou shalt not speak ill of any fellow Republican." Unfortunately in our County party, there are a handful of Republicans who repeatedly break this commandment, waging a multi-faceted campaign of whispers, innuendos and emails spreading lies and gossip about some Republican candidates.

For many years now, one of our County precinct chairs has repeatedly criticized former Republican Congressman and Gubernatorial candidate Ernest Istook. Shamefully, those criticisms have been as much about his religion than anything else.

Unfortunately, I have witnessed first hand the breaking of the Eleventh Commandment, as two years ago when I was running both my wife and I were the victims of such attacks by members of our own party. I can only wonder how an election that was decided by less than 100 votes might have been different had I not had to combat not just the Democrats, but fellow Republicans who instead of assisting the campaign, chose to speak ill.

Now, some of these same people have launched a last minute attack on our Republican County Clerk, Tammy Howard. As you know, she was appointed to that position earlier this year by our Republican County Commissioners and is on the ballot today. In an attempt to defeat her, these same Republicans who have attacked me and other candidates are spreading out right lies around that Tammy has violated the law with regards to publishing the minutes. The truth as found in the black letter law of the Oklahoma Statutes, is that Tammy Howard is following the law. The minutes are given to the newspaper on time and have been handled by her in the same manner as her predessors have over the last 10-15 years. Tammy not only complies with this law, but her knowledge and experience of the County Clerk's office are precisely what led Dorinda Harvey, our past Republican County Clerk, to endorse her and are what led all three of our Republican County Commissioners to appoint her!

It is these kinds of ugly and unbecoming attacks on candidates that keep many good and honorable people form running in the first place. Instead of spending time beating up another Republican, why not just say good things about your candidate and save your negative campaigning for the General election when we face our common adversary - the Democrats?

So today, please go and vote and then I hope you will pledge to help put an end to the negative defeatist politics that have become too commonplace within our local party.

Sincerely yours,

Thad Balkman
Second email
Fellow Republicans:

Earlier today I emailed you to express my disappointment in the way some members of our party are treating Republican candidates. In response I have received several emails thanking me. Unfortunately, one individual, Tom Elmore, has unleashed a barrage of emails towards me demonstrating exactly the kind of negative and counter-productive attacks I was asking us all to stop. In my email I did not name any of the perpetrators, as it was not my purpose to agitate, but rather to unify. However, Mr. Elmore has decided to respond by sending me seven emails today, most of which are filled with rumor and innuendo relating to my religion. As I told Mr. Elmore, it is these hateful actions that led many people to take a pass when it comes to running for office or even be active in local party politics. It is certainly a factor in why I have chosen to scale back my involvement in the party following the end of my legislative career. It makes me wonder how many Republicans here in Cleveland County sit on the sidelines because of the actions of a few mean spirited people? And in this particular circumstance, the individual who attacked me is a member of the County Committee and a Precinct Chairman. With Republican "friends" like these, who needs Democrats?

Thad Balkman

Why Local Contractor Sues The City Of Norman?

Local contractor charges the City of Norman with harassment and not following the competitive bid laws. Do we have problems in the City's Public Works Department? We have all heard the rumors for some time now that the City of Norman plays by a different set of rules. I guess we will wait and see the results. Meanwhile our tax dollars are being wasted.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

J.C. Watts

Sun July 27, 2008
Watts' powerful message rekindles Olympic spirit
Berry Tramel

Somewhere between the boycotts and Ben Johnson's drug test, somewhere around the ridiculous judging from boxing ring to gymnastics mat, somewhere from the crass commercialism to the rampant nationalism, I lost the Olympic spirit.
Been gone awhile. Not likely to come back.

Majestic opening ceremonies don't light the fire. Epic performances, stirring drama, fantastic competition? Sorry, nothing trips the Olympic trigger.

But a few days ago, for a few moments, J.C. Watts came awfully close to lighting my Olympic flame.

The old wishbone quarterback turned U.S. congressman, now political squire, has maintained one constant through 30 years in the Oklahoma spotlight.

Umatched orator skills, at least for these parts.

Be it speech or sermon or streetcorner chat, Watts inspires with a rhythmic passion. And Watts' subject was the Olympic ideal.

Watts had just come from Vegas, where Tuesday he spoke to the U.S. basketball team as part of the Olympic Ambassador program.

There is nothing hidden about the USOC's agenda. Remind all its athletes to be good citizens in Beijing. Don't be Ugly Americans. Do the stars and stripes proud not only with feats afield, but with attitude and behavior.

I don't know how the current Dream Teamers welcomed Watts. Before the Hornets hit town, I would have guessed NBA stars to be clownish in regards to citizenship and responsibility. But the hoop stars that came through the Ford Center displayed a maturity that belies their image. Many of them displayed grace and dignity.

I'm not saying they were Sidney Poitier. But they also weren't slap-happy yardbirds with stocking caps dripping to their knees.

"I thought it was a great experience to have the opportunity to have them speak to us about the Olympic experience,? the Pistons' Tayshaun Prince said of the ambassador speakers. "...they had the opportunity to talk to us and remind us that the whole world would be watching, go out there and give it your all. You're representing everybody and they're pulling for you. Those are nice things to hear when you have the opportunity to represent your country and go overseas and have the USA across your chest and to be able to represent the best you can.?

Watts called it "quite an honor, quite a thrill? to chat with Dwight Howard, Kobe Bryant, Dwyane Wade, LeBron James and Chris Paul.

Watts said U.S. coach Mike Krzyzewski set the table even before the presentation, playing Marvin Gaye's rendition of the national anthem and calling it the U.S. fight song.

What did Watts say? He recounted his theme for me, sans the singsong cadence that, when coupled with a powerful message, makes your heart soar.

Such a beat wasn't necessary. Watts' words were powerful enough.

"I tried to remind them of what the Olympic ideal was established to be,? Watts said. "We've got wars, poverty, diseases and scandal. Those are the things that dominate the headlines.

"But I also reminded them we live in a pretty dynamic world. A lot of opportunities that couldn't be imagined...

"They're going to come face-to-face with friends and rivals and enemies.

"In all this craziness, the reason the Olympics exist, those that have gone before them, despite global conflicts, integrity and sportsmanship could help ease the tension outside the arena.

"Olympics depict peace and goodwill. For a brief moment, the world can imagine the excellence that can lift us through sports.?

The Olympics can unite just as local sporting passions can do the same.

"Republic and Democrat, liberal and conservative, doesn't matter,? Watts said. "People wearing crimson and cream sit together at Owen Field and root for the Sooners. That was kind of my message to them.

"I wanted to remind them who they were representing. They're wearing the stars and stripes.?

Football is not an Olympic sport, but Watts figures he's worn the stars and stripes himself. Five years ago, he was asked by President Bush and Colin Powell to represent the U.S. in a global conference on race in Vienna.

"I wore the American uniform,? Watts said.

The stars and stripes mean different things to different people. To some, it stands for freedom and heroes. For others, it means broken promises and injustices.

"But despite that,? Watts said, "they are wearing the uniform not because this nation was perfect in the past or perfect today ... we're not perfect. But we've come as close to getting it right as any society in the history of man.

"Thankfully, there's much we can be proud of. That was kind of the message. So we can go to Beijing proud, with the promise of the future and a more perfect union.?

I came away inspired, just as most times I've heard Watts speak, going back to a Norman High School football banquet circa 1981.

That "more perfect union? stuff gets me every time.

Friday morning, the day I wrote this column, I hung out Old Glory on my front porch. Heck, I might even watch the Olympics.