Several of Oklahoma's lawmakers are making unprecedented efforts to become more accessible to the citizens. They are finding an added benefit of greater clarity and fuller context to what we sometimes see in the media outlets. A couple years ago I reached out to several lawmakers, asking them to consider the power of blogging as a tool of greater communication. Perhaps the best benefit is that you get to give full context to your decisions without the reporters taking you out of context.
Some lawmakers are directing their assistants to post press releases, newly filed bills, explanations of votes, and announcements of town hall meetings. We have created a section of our news outlet specifically for the lawmakers of the state to get their message out.
Majority Floor Leader, Jon Echols, has been one of the lawmakers who utilizes social media very well. Here are a few of his recent posts. I hope the readers of Sooner Politics find it insightful.
September 25 at 8:09am ·
I'm leaving for the Capitol for the first day of Special Session. I'll be giving daily updates on my Facebook page.
We will gavel in for special session at 1:30 and "first read" all special session bills. At that time I will assign each bill either direct to the floor, to the Joint Appropriation and Budget Committee or to the Rules committee. I don't know where they will all go yet because House bill filing deadline is today at 10:00.
There will be no votes today because constitutionally a floor vote cannot be cast until the third day after a bill is introduced. Later today I will post about the bills I personally am introducing.
Today please pray for wisdom for the members of the legislature. And it is my sincere desire that all will be motivated not by petty partisan politics or selfish ambition, but by a desire to do what is right for the state.
September 25 ·
Heading home from the Capitol. I didn't get to update as much as I would like today but I will give another update tomorrow. In the meantime I hung something new over my office door. It describes my desire for this state to rise above and provide for a prosperous future. "Hope"
Special Session update day 2
Special Session update day 2
Quick recap. Each day of special session I will be posting a quick update on what to expect.
Today will be a very quick day on the Floor. We will come in at 10 and "second read" all bills. That is a constitutional requirement. No votes will occur on the floor.
Negotiations will also continue between all parties to attempt to reach an agreed resolution.
The House Joint Appropriations and Budget Committee will meet today immediately after session.
Tensions were high yesterday and I expect they will escalate. That building has a way of bringing out the worst in people in terms of how they act and how they treat others. Name calling and personal attacks are not only unproductive, but at my core it is not the person I want to be. Specifically today in committees, negotiations and our actions on the floor I hope all members of the legislature and governors office, myself included, conduct themselves in a manner befitting the dignity of the state of Oklahoma. There is much work left to be done, and the best results are when we do it together.