The new faces at the Oklahoma capitol are many, this winter. 36 Republicans and 9 Democrats were sworn into office for the first time, last month and are busy learning their new duties, protocols, colleagues, and legislative assistants.
Many of them are already busy reading and writing legislation for consideration by the various committees they are being appointed to. These folks will not get wealthy by means of their legislative pay. The oversight committee which sets legislative compensation took a drastic turn last spring, last year, and cut the base pay of all legislators. It is now well under $40K for the entire year. They do, however; get reimbursed for travel & lodging expenses, based upon their district's proximity to the state capitol.
This is the largest group of freshmen legislators since the state's very first session, back 110 years ago. It is also the largest Republican caucus in state history. The legislature was solidly Democrat for about the first 100 years. Two of the current legislators have served as both Democrat and Republican members. About 75% of the current House membership has only 2 years or less of experience. And some of them are chairing very influential committees.
We've linked each new member's portrait to the House webpage devoted to the district they serve. By clicking on that link, you can read an informative bio of the new member and about the district they now represent.
The members were sworn in back in mid November, but they became paid members as of December 1st. This month has been full of Caucus retreats, workshops, lobbyists barraging them with attention, flattery, offers, schmushing, and plenty of substantive information of matter that 'desperately need their attention'.
They will gather again on January 8th, to formally vote for a Speaker, and then again in early February for the beginning of the 57th legislature's regular 2019 session.
Many of them have blogs and social media sites where they will communicate their activities. SoonerPolitics will be carrying much of that in our Lawmakers Journal section.