The Edmond Sun

State News

January 17, 2013

Oklahoma delegation views on gun curb plan mostly negative

TULSA — Responses from Oklahoma’s congressional delegation, local law enforcement officials and area firearms businesses to President Barack Obama’s gun control proposal varied Wednesday but were generally negative, with 2nd District U.S. Rep. Markwayne Mullin sounding particularly outraged.

“The president is politicizing a national tragedy to impose his own personal agenda,” Mullin said in a written statement.

“This is outrageous and an outright assault on civil liberties. I strongly oppose restricting the rights of law abiding citizens to keep and bear arms and will do everything I can to protect our Second Amendment rights,” he said.

U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe, the delegation’s senior member, was more restrained in his analysis.

“What people need to understand about today’s announcement is that it involved two very distinct actions by the president: 1) executives actions that the president will be implementing unilaterally, and 2) making recommendations to Congress for laws that it should pass,” Inhofe said, also in a written statement.

"While we mourn with those who have lost loved ones, in no way should the actions of those few who act illegally impact the constitutional rights of the many. I will continue to strongly oppose any effort to undermine the Second Amendment and an individual citizen’s right to keep and bear arms.”

— Sen. Jim Inhofe, R-Okla.

“I would welcome the opportunity to debate these issues on the floor of the Senate Members of Congress and the American people have a right to know where members stand on these key policies. If members can’t defend their positions, they don’t deserve to be here.”

— Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Okla.

“In Oklahoma there are many law—abiding citizens who hunt, fish and keep guns for self—protection. The last thing we need to do is infringe upon the rights of those citizens. Criminals who chose to break the law will not be deterred by any number of executive actions.”

— Rep. Markwayne Mullin, R-Okla.

“I will oppose any legislation to limit the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding Americans, including a ban on so-called assault weapons.”

— Rep. Tom Cole, R-Okla.

“President Obama’s announcement that his administration will be using executive actions to implement additional gun control is deeply troubling to me. Bypassing Congress to implement stricter gun laws is not the solution to preventing violence in our country. “

— Rep. Frank Lucas, R-Okla.

Inhofe said most of the executive orders are “common-sense changes that are within the president’s current powers to implement.”

“Where I do disagree with the president is on his recommendations for laws Congress should pass,” Inhofe said. “We know from experience that an assault weapons ban will have no meaningful effect on gun violence, as many of the changes that are implemented by such a ban are cosmetic in nature.

“Statistics demonstrate that a ban on particular weapons will not significantly decrease crime. Such a ban will, however, significantly decrease our rights guaranteed by the Constitution.”

U.S. Sen. Tom Coburn said he looks forward to “a full and open debate.”

“The president is right to examine what can be done to prevent tragedies such as Sandy Hook from occurring again,” Coburn said. “I commend his effort and look forward to working with him on areas of agreement while we continue to honestly debate areas of disagreement.

“The president is right to take steps to strengthen mental health databases and reporting to the NICS system (the National Instant Criminal Background Check System) so we can ensure that guns do not end up in the hands of criminals or those who are a threat to themselves or others,” Coburn continued. “In the hands of a deranged person, a clip size of one is one too many.”

But Coburn also gave more than a passing nod to gun rights enthusiasts.

“As we debate these measures, we first must ensure our constitutional rights and individual liberties, including the Second Amendment right to bear arms,” he said.

“Instead of repeating the failed policies of the past, Congress should work on thoughtful and constitutional ways to prevent unspeakable tragedies like this from happening again. The fact that almost every public mass shooting tragedy occurs in a place where guns are prohibited shows that restricting Second Amendment rights tends to disarm everyone but the assailant.”

Neither Tulsa Police Chief Chuck Jordan nor Tulsa County Sheriff Stanley Glanz would comment on Obama’s initiative.

Joe Wanenmacher, whose twice-a-year Tulsa gun shows are said to be the largest in the world, said the proposals are “an attack on every law-abiding gun owner in America.”

Wanenmacher said the proposals “by and large will do little to prevent the incidents that we’ve experienced lately. It will only hamper the law-abiding gun owners.”

Wanenmacher said he would like Congress to explore limiting the violence in video games and improve patient access to inexpensive or free mental clinics.

“The trouble is, the mentally deranged people who are going to do the bad things are not the ones who will go to the free clinics,” Wanenmacher said. “Likewise, criminals usually steal their guns. A sign that says ‘this is a gun-free area’ will stop law-abiding citizens, but it will not stop the criminals and ones with the malicious intent.”

Eric Fuson, general manager of the 2A Shooting Center in Tulsa, said expanded background checks could garner support among gun owners.

“There’s already an extensive background check done as long as you buy the gun from a dealer,” Fuson said. “But there’s no requirement for background checks in most states for an individual selling a gun to another individual.

“We might see some of that stuff changing in the future. I can’t see most people not being OK with that.”

Talk of gun regulations has caused sales of the firearms to spike nationwide. But Fuson offered a dire scenario for firearms retailers if the purchasing pace doesn’t slow.

“This can go on only for so long before businesses start shutting down,” he said. “Let’s say you sell guns for a living, and three months after all this stuff happened, you don’t have a single gun left in your store for sale, nor can you find one to buy anywhere in the country.”

World Staff Writer Jerry Wofford contributed to this story.

Executive orders

President Obama’s executive orders on gun control include:

—Address legal barriers in health laws that bar some states from making available information about people who are prohibited from having guns

—Improve incentives for states to share information with the background check system

—Direct the attorney general to work with other agencies to review existing laws to make sure they can identify individuals who shouldn’t have access to guns

—Give local communities the opportunity to hire up to 1,000 school resource officers and counselors

—Require federal law enforcement to trace all recovered guns

—Provide training for state and local law enforcement, first responders and school officials on how to handle active—shooter situations

Obama administration plan for curbing gun violence

Proposals for curbing gun violence announced Wednesday by President Barack Obama:


—Requiring background checks on all gun sales. Obama said there should be exceptions for cases like certain transfers among family members and temporary transfers for hunting purposes.

—Reinstating the assault weapons ban. A 10-year ban on high-grade, military-style weapons expired in 2004.

—Renewing a 10-round limit on the size of ammunition magazines.

—Prohibiting the possession, transfer, manufacture and import of dangerous armor-piercing bullets.

—Senate confirmation of a director for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. The agency has been run by an acting director, Todd Jones, whom Obama nominated to become director.

—New gun trafficking laws penalizing people who help criminals get guns.


—Address legal barriers in health laws that bar some states from making available information about people who are prohibited from having guns.

—Improve incentives for states to share information with the background check system.

—Make sure that federal agencies share relevant information with the background check system.

—Direct the attorney general to work with other agencies to review existing laws to make sure they can identify individuals who shouldn’t have access to guns.

—Direct the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other research agencies to conduct research into the causes and prevention of gun violence.

—Clarify that no federal law prohibits doctors or other health care providers from contacting authorities when patients threaten to use violence.

—Give local communities the opportunity to hire up to 1,000 school resource officers and counselors.

—Require federal law enforcement to trace all recovered guns.

—Propose regulations that will enable law enforcement to run complete background checks before returning firearms that have been seized.

—Direct the Justice Department to analyze information on lost and stolen guns and make that information available to law enforcement.

—Provide training for state and local law enforcement, first responders and school officials on how to handle activeshooter situations.

—Make sure every school has a comprehensive emergency management plan.

—Help ensure that young people get needed mental health treatment.

—Ensure that health insurance plans cover mental health benefits.

—Encourage development of new technology to make it easier for gun owners to safely use and store their guns.

—Have the Consumer Product Safety Commission assess the need for new safety standards for gun locks and gun safes.

—Launch a national campaign about responsible gun ownership.

Randy Krehbiel 918-581-8365 Rhett Morgan 918-581-8395

Text Only
State News
  • Sheriffs accuse state of ducking out on prisoner promises

    State efforts to save time and money by shuffling prisoners more swiftly through the system are riling local sheriffs who are losing money because of the efficiency program.
    A change in Department of Corrections practice is landing a “significant hit” on two-thirds of Oklahoma counties, which depend on reimbursements to house state inmates locally, said Ken McNair, executive vice president of the Oklahoma Sheriffs’ Association.
    “The sheriffs are now in a position where they have to make adjustments to their budgets,” he said.
    Sheriffs converged on the Capitol on Tuesday, filling the Senate gallery, in part to protest efforts to remove inmates from their custody. The change will cost the sheriffs — but save the state — millions each year.

    April 24, 2014

  • OK officials account for disaster spending

    Nearly a year after deadly tornadoes hit central Oklahoma, officials announced that they have spent close to $9.4 million in private donations on relief efforts.

    April 24, 2014

  • pic 2.JPG Energy secretary touts CNG fleet conversion

    Oklahoma Secretary of Energy and Environment Michael Teague said the state is leading the way in converting its fleet of vehicles to run on compressed natural gas.
    And, he adds, the state is working to get federal officials engaged in moving its fleet of vehicles in Oklahoma to use CNG.
    Teague made those statements Tuesday during a visit to Champion CNG, 13915 N. Harvey Ave. in Edmond. The visit also coincided with Earth Day.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • 3 Senate candidates say no to Sharia law

    Whether to deport non-citizen Muslim men in the U.S. who believe violence is justified by Sharia law was a question asked to three of the seven Republicans running for the U.S. Senate.
    The Oklahoma Conservative Political Action Committee hosted a debate recently in Oklahoma City. The office is being vacated by retiring U.S. Sen. Tom Coburn.
    Congressman James Lankford said Great Britain has experimented with allowing certain pockets of their nation to function under Sharia law.

    April 22, 2014

  • Authorities make 8th arrest in Logan Co. homicide

    Authorities have arrested an eighth suspect in a homicide which involved the discovery of a badly burned body along a Logan County road.
    On Jan. 31, firefighters were dispatched to a grass fire in a rural area located south of State Highway 33 between Langston and Guthrie, Logan County Sheriff’s Office Chief Deputy Richard Stephens stated in a previous report. While extinguishing the fire, firefighters discovered a badly burned male body, Stephens said.

    April 22, 2014

  • State suspends student testing over glitches

    Computer glitches forced state education officials to suspend online testing Monday, affecting student testing in Edmond and Deer Creek.
    State Superintendent Janet Barresi said as a result of online testing disruptions for students in grades 6-8 and high school end-of-instruction (EOIs) exams she directed testing vendor CTB/McGraw Hill to suspend online testing for the day.
    “We certainly share in the frustration that students and school districts feel,” Barresi said. “It is of paramount importance that CTB finds the nature of the problem and resolves it as quickly as possible.”

    April 21, 2014

  • Police: Missing teen’s car found on Edmond street

    Police have released more information about a missing teen’s last known actions and the location of  her vehicle.
    In a previous report, Oklahoma City Police Sgt. Jennifer Wardlow said the agency’s Missing Persons Unit is asking for the public’s help locating Anne Josette Hill, 16, a white female with brown hair, brown eyes, standing about 5-feet, 4-inches and weighing about 120 pounds.
    Wardlow said Hill was last seen April 10 in the north Oklahoma City/Edmond area.

    April 21, 2014

  • Jolley says Oklahoma common sense needed in Congress

    The conservative values that persuaded voters to elect state Sen. Clark Jolley to the state Legislature 10 years ago have not changed, he said. Jolley will bring the same values to Washington, D.C., if voters elect him to the Congressional 5th District, he said.
    More people today are moving to Oklahoma from Texas than vice versa, Jolley said. State government is solving problems, he added. So what the federal government needs is a lot of Oklahoma common sense solutions, said Jolley, R-Edmond.

    April 21, 2014

  • Kaiser joins Thunder ownership group

    Tulsa businessman George B. Kaiser has been approved by the NBA Board of Governors as a new partner in The Professional Basketball Club LLC, which owns the Oklahoma City Thunder. Thunder Chairman and CEO Clayton I. Bennett made the announcement Friday. Kaiser is purchasing the ownership interest of Tom L. Ward.
    “We are honored to welcome George Kaiser as a member of the ownership group of the Oklahoma City Thunder,” Bennett said. “George is a well-respected and important Oklahoma business leader, as well as one of the state and nation’s top philanthropists. His commitment to successful business and community leadership is in true alignment with that of the Thunder.
    “I also appreciate the commitment and leadership provided by Tom Ward as a member of our ownership group from the beginning,” Bennett added.

    April 18, 2014

  • jc_HarveySparks.jpg Pastor seeks congressional seat

    Working in the Congressional 1st District office of Congressman Jim Bridenstine was an eye opener for Harvey Sparks, he said. His analytical exposure to Congress has sparked his drive to run for the Congressional 5th District of Oklahoma, said Sparks, R-Oklahoma City.
    Sparks has been a pastor for the majority of his professional life. Sixteen months ago, he was asked by 1st District Congressman Jim Bridenstine to come work in his Washington, D.C., office. He and his wife, Jennifer, have three daughters and a son, ages 10-3.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo