WAS SHE EVER A REPUBLICAN
WE SAY SHE WAS NOT
Strange things happen during the legislative session. A politician's career can be on the line with every vote they make. This year was no exception to the rule. Perhaps the strangest thing to happen this last session was the state budget. It was clear that the House Appropriations Committee had her own agenda. That agenda had nothing to do with what was good for the people of Oklahoma. It was all about her political career.
We started by going to her official house web site here Representative Leslie Osborn - Oklahoma House of Representatives. There is very little information about her available on this site. That's an indication that she wants her privacy. We all do, but public figures should give more information than just her name.
What actually brought our attention to this sordid tale was this Oklahoma representative who spoke out against House leaders removed from committee position | KFOR.com. The way this was reported here would indicate that she lost her position due to remarks that she made that were derogatory to the Speaker of the House. That is not all there was to the story. They left out the part where she failed to close the hole in the state's budget; she also violated the state's Constitution by passing revenue bills within the last five days of the session. To date one of those measures has been declared unconstitutional by the Oklahoma State Supreme Court which has caused the Governor to call for a special session to cover the $250 million dollar gap added on to what she didn't close. To put it into perspective she failed to properly manage the budget bills through the House of Representatives in a timely manner. She just wasn't up to the job.
In support of her being relieved as Chairman there is this article Rep. Leslie Osborn removed as Appropriations & Budget Committee chair. Here the reporter actually spoke with the Speaker and got a justification for her being relieved. Both of these articles come from local news media the difference is one reporter did their homework on the subject and the other did not do their homework. That would actually place the first story into a category that we are getting tired of hearing "Fake News." Is it any wonder the citizens are confused about whom to believe these days? We think not.
The next article we found was this Democrats Back Osborn After Ouster | The McCarville Report. This is where you begin to wonder about her party loyalty. The Democrats supported Leslie Osborn after she was relieved of her duties. We encourage you to open this link and read the article for yourself. In it you'll find this from Representative Scott Inman "We all know why DHS had to cut funding and it's not DHS's fault. It's a shame @leslieosborn1 can't speak truth to power w/o losing her job!" Well as Mr. Inman is a Democrat, we would expect from a leader hoping to gain some support, but it lacks the honesty necessary to make it true. There was just too much left undone to make this believable.
The next article of interest we found was this Oklahoma state government spending is higher than everOCPA - Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs. This is very true. In fact this article points out the fact that during the depression started in 2008, only one time, FY2010, did the state's budget take a cut. This would indicate that the state really doesn't have an income problem. This is indicative of what is in fact an unwillingness of the elected officials wanting to take back some of the tax credits to the major donors to their campaigns and the people be damned.
Then there is this idiotic statement Rep. Leslie Osborn: Three lessons from the 2017 Oklahoma Legislature | Opinionfeatured | tulsaworld.com. We definitely want you to open this link and read the article. Right at the top the article reads "We have a revenue problem in our state." We don't have a revenue problem in this state; we have a spending problem in this state. She goes on to state "When I entered the Legislature in 008, we were falsely buoyed by an injection of federal stimulus funding. Shortly afterwards, our economy looked to be on the upturn, and we listened to the policy think tanks and gave away our fiscal base." That's odd because she didn't take office until 2009. When she won the election in 2008 federal stimulus funding was just beginning to trickle into the state.
She adds "We must invest in our state." On that we can agree, so we must ask where is the legislation she authored to help make this happen. None that we could find. She states "We are dreadfully complacent with being the last in every indicator. Educational outcomes, obesity statistics, smoking rates and activity levels." Is she having the DNC write her stuff for her? Even without the smoke and mirrors we are not last in the nation in these statistics. Education funding has gone up annually. She wants to talk about smoking rates. Fine, we can do that. The TCET fund that was supposed to be used to help people stop smoking and help reimburse the medical facilities doesn't fund anything past the 1980 technology in smoking cessation aides and has spent more money buying towns off to make areas a smoke free environment than it has on anything else. Give us break will you. You're beginning to sound like Barack Obama. While you're at it why didn't she do anything about the Tulsa Public Schools laying off a lot of senior staff and then turning around and giving the money they saved to the remaining staff as pay raises? Does she really think people aren't awake to the games they play?
The next article we found was this Free Market Friday: Misleading statements harmful – The Journal Record. Her previous statement that Oklahoma is 50th in the nation on tax collection is pure fiction. University of Oklahoma President David Boren even used misleading statements about claiming Oklahoma was last in the nation for supporting higher education. We can't help but wonder if they are dreaming about some liberal sanctuary.
"Despite Boren's claims, the actual data show that Oklahoma ranks 31st in total state support for higher education. When adjusted for cost of living, on a per capita basis, Oklahoma ranks 26th in the nation in state support for higher education." So we must ask why the University system in Oklahoma almost on an annual basis is seeking tuition and fee increases? That's just plain stupid.
Misleading statements are usually designed to seek something they want. That holds true here "Regarding Osborn's assertion, the actual data shows Oklahoma is not 50th in the nation. According to the latest available data from the Census Bureau, Oklahoma collects more in state taxes than Alaska, Delaware, Hawaii, Idaho, Kansas, Maine, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Dakota, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Utah, Vermont, West Virginia and Wyoming." That's nineteen states that collect more in taxes than Oklahoma.
Now we are aware that Representative Osborn is not term limited until 2020. We were curious as to how this loss of the Chair of the Appropriations Committee would affect her political career. Then we found this article Former House Budget Chair Leslie Osborn looks for statewide seat | News OK. For an individual who is willing to risk costing tax payers an extra $36,000.00 a day to pass revenue increasing bills that she had to know wouldn't be allowed to stand. This is perhaps the biggest joke she has left for the citizens of Oklahoma. She was hoping to launch her political career at the expense of the citizens of Oklahoma. She couldn't even get a budget passed in time and wants to hold a statewide office. Dangerous times are ahead if she is successful.
The next article we found was this Oklahoma Rep. Leslie Osborn to Run for Labor Commissioner | Oklahoma News | US News. As much as she liked raising fees and taxes can you imagine how many more unnecessary rules and regulations she would try to have passed as a Commissioner of Labor? We could pretty much say good-bye to any job growth or industrial growth in the state. Her failure as the Chair of the Appropriation Committee shouldn't be allowed as a starting point for higher office.
We next took a look at 20 votes that she made that directly affects your pocket. Here is what we found
- HB 1427 Out of State Tax Collection Voted Excused, Neutral Vote
- HB 1449 Electric Vehicle Tax Voted Yea Liberal Vote
- HB 1837 Lottery % Raid Voted Yea Liberal Vote
- HB 1845 Real ID Voted Yea Liberal Vote
- HB 2131 10% Sales Tax Rebate Scheme Voted Yea Liberal Vote
- HB 2348 Deduction Freeze Voted Yea Liberal Vote
- HB 2351 Tax Incentive Credit Voted Yea Liberal Vote
- HB 2356 Franchise Tax Date Move Voted Yea Liberal Vote
- HB 2367 Tax Collector Claw Back Voted Yea Liberal Vote
- HB 2372 $1.50 Cigarette Tax Increase Voted Yea Liberal Vote
- HB 2387 OJA Bonds Voted Yea Liberal Vote
- HB 2389 Health Department Bonds Voted Yea Liberal Vote
- HB 2403 Tax deduction limit bill Voted Yea Liberal Vote
- HB 2414 Log Rolling 3 Tax Bills Voted Yea Liberal Vote
- HB 2433 Car Sales Tax Voted Yea Liberal Vote
- SB 38 Fee increases Voted Excused No vote
- SB 120 Aerospace Tax Credit Extension Voted Yea Liberal Vote
- SB 170 Income Tax Rate Cut reversal Voted Excused No Vote
- SB 786 Soft on Crime Bill Voted Yea Liberal Vote
- SB 845 Smoking Fee Voted Yea Liberal Vote.
That is an absolutely pitiful voting record. She scored a 7.5% on the Sooner Tea Party's RINO list. What's even worse she got a score that high simply because she missed three votes. That is a worse score than every single Democrat in the House actually got.
So there it is folks. A failed Appropriations Committee Chair is replaced because she proved she was incapable of getting the job done. Now she wants to be your next Labor Commissioner. She claims that Oklahoma has a revenue problem when in actuality it has a spending problem. What you didn't see and they won't tell you about is the over $2 billion dollars a year in tax credits to the large companies that finance their campaigns. She is unfit to serve as a Labor Commissioner or even a dog catcher. What's worse is nothing was done by the state or the legislature to expand our tax base. We can't go on believing that oil and gas will cover the states bills. All they are working for up there is to get their name on a bill that becomes law so they can be forever immortalized in the states history.