In Oklahoma, State Questions on the ballot may be more important than our presidential pick.
Never in my lifetime (56 years) has anyone but a GOP candidate been picked in Oklahoma in a national election (except LBJ) Romney got our 7 in 2012, Mccain in 2008, before that Bush, Bob Dole, H. Bush, Reagan, Nixon, ad infinitum. I don’t see this changing just because it’s 2016, regardless of Bernie, or Hillary, or Gary on the ticket. Get ready for Trump here jetting off with our 7 electoral votes. Sad, but that’s the forecast.
Of more importance for Oklahomans in this election– more than who will be US President– are the State Questions on the ballot: State Question 790, State Question No.: 776, and State Question No.: 777. The presidential pick is minor news compared to these.
The presidential race is a distraction in many ways. Arguments over who should sit in the White House are entertaining yet are distractions from the real issues ’round here. O, how we do wish Oklahoma was a Democratic swing state, but it’s not–no matter how many Hillarys, Bernies, or Garys. Our state history has shown that a GOP candidate will win Oklahoma. No matter what. This has been true since 1948. Of course, that doesn’t mean that an Oklahoma’s pick goes on to the White House, (like Sarah Palin) but what it does mean is that local and state happenings are certainly more worthy of our wranglings.
Take a look the State Questions on the Ballot in November.
“Right-to-farm laws already exist in all states in America. In spite of this, ALEC developed model legislation around the mid-1990’s to expand these laws to cover larger farms to push the corporate farming agenda. In the case of this particular model bill, the aim was to undermine existing local farm laws to make it more difficult to regulate pollution, noise, and animal welfare.” –donnacliffordjones
“This measure adds Section 38 to Article II of the Oklahoma Constitution. The new section creates state constitutional rights. It creates the following guaranteed rights to engage in farming and ranching: • The right to make use of agricultural technology, • The right to make use of livestock procedures, and • The right to make use of ranching practices. These constitutional rights receive extra protection under this measure that not all constitutional rights receive. This extra protection is a limit on lawmakers’ ability to interfere with the exercise of these rights. Under this extra protection, no law can interfere with these rights, unless the law is justified by a compelling state interest—a clearly identified state interest of the highest order. Additionally, the law must be necessary to serve that compelling state interest. The measure—and the protections identified above—do not apply to and do not impact state laws related to: • Trespass, • Eminent domain, • Easements, • Right of way or other property rights, and • Any state statutes and political subdivision ordinances enacted before December 31, 2014.”- Oklahoma Secretary of State
State Question 790
The Oklahoma Public Money for Religious Purposes, State Question 790 is on the November 8, 2016, ballot in Oklahoma as a legislatively referred constitutional amendment.
The measure, upon voter approval, would repeal Section 5 of Article 2 of the Oklahoma Constitution, which prohibits public money from being spent for religious purposes. Passage of the measure would allow the Ten Commandments monument to be returned to the Capitol.
A “yes” vote is a vote in favor of allowing public money to be spent for religious purposes.
A “no” vote is a vote against allowing public money to be spent for religious purposes.
State Question No.: 776
SUBJECT: Death penalty – all death penalty statutes are in effect. It states that methods of execution can be changed. It states that the death penalty is not cruel and unusual punishment
This measure adds a new section to the Oklahoma Constitution, Section 9A of Article 2. The new Section deals with the death penalty. The Section establishes State constitutional mandates relating to the death penalty and methods of execution. Under these constitutional requirements: • The Legislature is expressly empowered to designate any method of execution not prohibited by the United States Constitution • Death sentences shall not be reduces because a method of execution is ruled to be invalid. • When an execution method is declared invalid, the death penalty imposed shall remain in force until it can be carried out using any valid execution method, and • The imposition of a death penalty under Oklahoma law¬—as distinguished from a method of execution—shall not be deemed to be or constitute the infliction of cruel or unusual punishment under Oklahoma’s Constitution, nor to contravene and provision of the Oklahoma Constitution.
Oklahoma voters will elect one member to the U.S. Senate and all five of its representatives to the U.S. House.
All 101 seats in the Oklahoma House of Representatives and 25 of the 48 seats in the Oklahoma State Senate are up for election this year.
State questions, 777, 776, 790.
Two seats on Oklahoma’s state-level courts are up for retention elections on November 8, 2016. Judge John Fischer and Judge Larry Joplin of the Oklahoma Court of Civil Appeals face retention in the 2016 election.
US President race is in there somewhere.
In Oklahoma, write-ins are not allowed and will invalidate all other votes on the ballot. However, a blank will not void the entire ballot.