To Comfort The Afflicted
And Afflict The Comfortable

To Comfort The Afflicted And Afflict The Comfortable

Monday, April 22, 2024


Pummeling People Power


SB 518 is an abuse of Oklahoma voters and those who vote for it are political abusers.

The bill purports to ensure the initiative petition process is more trustworthy, giving confidence to all citizens that when they vote for or against a state question placed on their ballot through the collection of signatures it is legally valid.

In fact, SB 518 is a sham, nothing more than the author’s attempt to make it harder for us, just plain folks, to gather signatures, have them verified, and then timely placed on the next election ballot for consideration.

Sen. Julie Daniels, R-Bartlesville, handled the proposal and couldn’t answer even the most routine of questions about it. The three Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee asked at least 15 good questions and it was embarrassing to watch the author wilt under the inquisition.

Here’s the bottom line: If you want to have to pay more, take longer and meet additional requirements to circulate a petition you should be for Daniels’ SB 518. Since there is no scandal to fix, no public outrage about the current process and no flaws to fix, all we have here is another example of those who hold the power wanting to expand theirs and reduce yours.

Eight Republicans sat there as members of the Judiciary Committee and voted “yes” for this power grab, acting as though they had not heard any of the excellent questions and debate offered by the three Democrats. These senators may have titles that go with their elected jobs, but they certainly do not have the backbone, integrity or principles expected to serve in the Oklahoma State Senate.

Of course, they should be ashamed of themselves, but the word “shame” probably is not a part of their vocabulary.

To watch the entire discussion and debate about SB 518, readers will have to go to the Senate website and follow the instructions from there. Sorry about that.

Or you can believe me.

Cal Hobson
Cal Hobson
Cal Hobson, a Lexington Democrat, served in the Oklahoma Legislature from 1978-2006, including one term as Senate President Pro Tempore.
Mark Krawczyk
Mark Krawczyk
March 9, 2023
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Brette Pruitt
Brette Pruitt
September 5, 2022
The Observer carries on the "give 'em hell" tradition of its founder, the late Frosty Troy. I read it from cover to cover. A progressive wouldn't be able to live in a red state without it.