State Rep. fighting to take power away from the Oklahoma people…

Although we’re still a bottom 10 state in a lot of areas, over the past few years, Oklahoma has made some progress in two surprising fields – criminal justice reform and medical marijuana legalization.

This progress is primarily thanks to non-profit coalitions, volunteer groups, and Oklahoma voters, who – after years of watching our cowardly, do-nothing conservative lawmakers pander to their base with unconstitutional legislation, while kicking important real-life issues in a can down the road – passed new reform laws via citizen driven petition initiatives that put state questions on the ballot.

This right of the Oklahoma voters to get shit done, and pass much-needed reforms on their own, hasn’t set too well with rural Derplahoman lawmakers who want to impose their sanctimonious ideology and moral code upon the majority.

Led by Oklahoma lawmaker Rep. John Pfeiffer, pictured above, Derplahomans in the legislature are now fighting to get a state question on the ballot that would give Oklahoma voters a chance to vote to make it harder for Oklahoma voters to pass meaningful reforms via ballot initiatives.

Here are details via The Oklahoman:

Some Republican lawmakers are seeking to change the initiative petition process by which Oklahoma voters can try to put issues on the ballot for a statewide vote.

Proposed legislation seeks to change the signature-gathering requirements for initiative petitions and increase transparency of the campaigns pushing ballot measures.

Legislation from Rep. John Pfeiffer, R-Orlando, would require initiative petition campaigns to collect signatures from each of Oklahoma’s five congressional districts.

Under House Joint Resolution 1027, in order to qualify for the ballot, a petition would need to get signatures from 8% of registered voters in each congressional district for statutory changes to Oklahoma law. For constitutional changes, petitions would need to get signatures from 15% of registered voters in each district. Referendum petitions would need signatures from 5% of registered voters in each district.

That’s a great idea! When I think of all the different ways to make Oklahoma a better state, making it harder for citizens to overcome their terrible representation and pass laws on their own is near the top of the list!

If this A) somehow makes its way onto the ballot and B) a majority of Oklahoma voters actually vote to limit their own powers, it will make getting a state question on the ballot via the petition process even more difficult. Check out the math:

Roughly 15% of that means a petition seeking a constitutional change could have to turn in around 313,000 signatures as opposed to the current 177,957 signatures, which is based on 15% of the votes cast in the 2018 gubernatorial general election. Roughly 5% of the state’s registered voters means a referendum petition would require around 104,000 signatures, as opposed to the current 59,319 signatures required.

Here’s what Pfeiffer said to justify his stupid idea:

“Right now, you can get all of the signatures from Oklahoma City and Tulsa and get all the votes you need to pass it from Oklahoma City and Tulsa,” he said. “It just leaves the rest of the state out in the cold.”

Yeah, that doesn’t make any sense.

At last check, people vote… not cities. There’s not a straight ticket “city / rural” option on the ballot like there is for political parties. Whether you live in Oklahoma City or Tulsa, or Oologah or Tushka, you still live in Oklahoma, and your vote still counts the same as every other Oklahoman’s vote.

Plus, if a majority of our state’s residents live in cities, and those residents get enough signatures to get a state question on the ballot, and those residents cast enough “yes” votes in a statewide election to make a proposal a law, what’s wrong? I’m pretty sure that’s how Democracy is supposed to work. If that leaves you feeling “out in the cold,” put on a jacket, move to a city, and maybe read a book on a civics or something.

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20 Responses

  1. Of course they want to change it. We can’t have a bunch citizens legislating sane and practical laws through initiative petition. The Derplahomans who legislate from 23rd and Lincoln don’t need or want their stranglehold of power given to them from the pulpits of fear in churches across the state to be usurped by a bunch of unwashed pinko libtards. SMFH…

    1. Summed up nicely.

  2. Sometimes looks can be deceiving, but in his case he is just as dumb as he looks.

    1. +1

  3. Medical marijuana and criminal reform go hand in hand. We have effectively legalized marijuana in incase you forget to get a medical card it only cost a fine not jail time. As usual the average Oklahoman is several steps ahead of the imbeciles in the legislature.

    1. Since they’re looking and walking backwards, that’s not hard to do.

    2. That is true Carl. Also every time we vote for something our do nothing government try and change what we voted for. I’m sick of the people who think they should be able to make us live their way. I was born in Oklahoma and have lived here all my life and I live by the rules but when we the people vote something into law leave it alone or get out of politics. I am way over 21 years old and you’re are not my parents so stop telling me how to live. If you don’t like our democratic process then get the hell out of my country.

  4. So – Question:
    When the average Oklahoman, votes for, let’s say, Jim Inhofe (see previous post), James Lankford or these same, idiot legislators, which are castigated here DAILY, they’re idiot, mouth breathers. However, when these same voters vote for issues with which you agree (liquor, weed & kicking open the jail doors) they are wise, progressive geniuses? How does one go from idiot to enlightened, then back to idiot again, so quickly?

    1. Really good points.

    2. Progressive politicians and even moderate politicians are demonized if they have the wrong letter behind their name. It’s not enough to not be a “d” you have to be an “r” to get the vote.

    3. vonH’s question makes no sense.

      Oklahoma voters aren’t a homogeneous smoothie from a blender set on purée. . They are individuals, each with a unique set of opinions about various issues. And it’s possible to be stupid on one issue and smart on another one. Right, vonH?

      If a majority of voters stupidly believe that Jim Inhofe and Markwayne Mullin represent good government and send them to Washington over and over, then all of us have agreed to live with that sorry result. That’s what a democratic republic looks like.

      Similarly, a different majority (likely consisting of many of the ones who made the bad choices I listed above) may turn around and make wise choices. They may wisely say with their votes that our “tough on crime” legislature is on the wrong track in punishing cannabis use as if it were heroin, and in locking people up for decades as punishment for drug dependency and minor crimes. The majority rules again!


  5. Since only a fraction of eligible voters vote in most elections, makes perfect sense to increase the number of signatures of voters to put an initiative on the ballot. Or it does if you are the people elected by 10-15% of the eligible voters.

    Ideally more people need to vote, but that isn’t going to happen. Oklahoma also needs to elect some people with some sense as opposed to fund raising and marketing expertise. But again that isn’t going to happen.

    I would hope the voters in Oklahoma will realize this is just another attempt to work against the will of the people. The voters saw through the attempt at having the Lt. Governor be in effect appointed by the Governor and the team would run as a ticket. Granted I don’t think Oklahoma Lt. Governor Matt Pinnell does anything including going to the rest room without approval from his boss Kevin Stitt.

    One of the few things good about Oklahoma is the ease of a voter initiative, and the fearless leaders seem to want to put an end to that. I think they are still smarting from another good voter initiative, term limits that would have never been introduced in the Legislature.

    I was a state employee at the time of that election, and there was serious pressure from the state agency heads for us all to vote against it. The claim was the state needed experienced elected officials or things would stop working in the state. There was quite an entitlement mentality at state agencies, but nothing compared to the elected officials.

  6. And under both initiatives (criminal justice reform with 780 & 781, and medical cannabis with 788), We The People were told “you don’t know what you’re voting for”.

  7. Good article.

    I would add that this proposal would make Oklahoma’s initiative process look more like the federal Electoral College, where running up the score in a few populous states with a majority of voters nationally isn’t good enough if you can’t scrape together enough votes from places like Wyoming, Alaska, and Oklahoma.

    Oklahoma already has a relatively high requirement for the number of signatures needed to get a question onto the ballot (which helps the Legislature keep the rabble under control). Oklahoma requires 15% of the vote in the last general election for governor for a constitutional amendment. California and Ohio require only 8%. Florida requires only 10%. So let’s make our initiative process even more difficult to access?

  8. If we voted them in we can vote them out Goverments takeing over eveyones lives we the People can Keep our Rights but We All need to Stand Up not just the Select

  9. Representative Pfeiffer is right on this one. You need look no further than the idiocracy running OKC now. They voted in a useless socialist Kendra Horn because Nervous Nancy and Cryin Chuck wanted them to. She’s voted completely opposite of what the majority of this state wants. If you want further proof, look at our Governor. A product of the OKC and Tulsa metro areas.

    1. As a member of the US house, she is only beholden to what her constituents want. She’s in the 5th congressional district, which includes most of the OKC metro area. So if a majority of those citizens wanted to elect a democrat, then the citizens of “the rest of the state” don’t really have anything to bitch about because she isn’t their representative. But if the easily manipulable and excitable populace fear anyone who doesn’t have an R next to their name on the ballot, they can continue to elect people responsible for making Oklahoma lag so far behind the rest of the nation in most measures that matter.

    2. I think you’ve solved the riddle for me Fred on how a fucking idiot like Private Bone Spurs was elected. Just rely on other fucking idiots.

  10. Fred F. couldn’t be wronger. Evidence #1: Socialist Kendra just voted against her DC Minders in support of fracking. Evidence #2: Governor Stitt LOST both Tulsa and Oklahoma counties and won office only because of strong support in rural Oklahoma. On the broader issue of the Pfeiffer HJR rarely have I seen a more undemocratic proposal. When and if this idea gets on the ballot it will lose, overwhelmingly, re-affirming again that on some issues citizens are not as stupid as Pfeiffer and Company think. Note I said “some issues”. On electing and re-electing individuals about as progressive as Mussolini.

  11. I gave up on Oklahoma politics a long time ago when lobbying was part of my job. I just go vote and expect my candidate or issue to lose. That way I have no great expectations.

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