The Oklahoma Senate Democratic caucus issued a statement today
through their leader, Sen.
John Sparks, D-Norman, commenting on the Governor’s call
for a special session of the Oklahoma Legislature:
“The Senate Democrats have been clear all along: we need
to approach a special session thoughtfully with real plans for
“Now more than ever we know that the numbers don’t
lie. The policies of the last ten years have put us in this position
and Republican leadership at the Capitol has failed Oklahomans.
It is long past time for the legislature to go in a different
direction, which is both the challenge and the opportunity of
this special session.
“Our constituents did not send us to the Capitol to simply
make across the board cuts and walk away claiming ‘we tried.’
The people of Oklahoma expect more from us than a short-term,
‘band-aid’ budget fix which fills the immediate budget
hole, but does nothing to address the budget problems we are facing
next year. Hard working Oklahomans demand more than regressive
taxes which burden them disproportionately.
“We need to set clear priorities, take hard votes and make
tough choices with all revenue options on the table for open,
transparent discussion and debate. This is a time for cooperation
and compromise. This is the time for a plan of action, accountability
and real results. This is the time for leadership and a long-term
plan for our state and its people.
“We owe it to our constituents to focus on a long-term
budget solution which protects the most basic, core government
functions and services. This is what our constituents demand of
us and what they deserve from us with no exceptions and no excuses.”