How Did Your Lawmaker Score on Children’s Issues?
Oklahoma City – The 2022 regular session of the Oklahoma Legislature has adjourned sine die (pronounced see-nay dee-a). That is Latin for the session ending without a day to return. The final gavel dropping was also the starting gun for the campaign season, which is now in full swing.
In only a few weeks in many cases, and a few months in others, you will be asked to make the decision on lawmakers seeking re-election and those trying to get elected. For those already in office, you should know what your representatives and senators did on the issues important to you.
The lawmakers this session had many issues before them that can and will help improve conditions faced by Oklahomans, and I want to personally thank them for much of the work they did. That goes for members of both parties and in both the House of Representatives and the Senate.
To that point, the Oklahoma Institute for Child Advocacy (OICA) compiles a list of legislation which makes it through both the House of Representatives and Senate that will impact the youth of our state. I am pleased to report that we had several perfect scores on our report card of lawmakers, and we want to thank all of those who had high marks.
You can review this report card at https://oica.org and here:
[Editor’s Note: If the print is too small, enlarge it to 150% or larger, and the analysis and vote breakdown becomes clearer.]
See how your own senator and representative measured up. This scorecard is put together by our Advocacy Committee consisting of several OICA board members, including Republicans, Democrats and Libertarians in their individual voter registration.
OICA also distributes a candidate questionnaire to those running for various state offices to gauge how those candidates feel about certain issues involving children and families. This year, we distributed twenty questions to candidates about different issues. The candidates have until June 14 to respond to these questions which will allow you to read their thoughts and cast a more informed vote.
The responsibility for Oklahoma’s direction ultimately rests in the hands of you, the voters. The decisions we all collectively make at polling places across the state will determine who serves in office and the direction they will take the state. Whether we truly become an even better place for our state’s youngest residents is up to you and your vote.
OICA’s primary job is to advocate on behalf of our children. It is in our name. While the most visible evidence of that advocacy occurs during sessions of the Legislature as we work with lawmakers to advance causes in which we believe and try to slow or stop those we believe will be harmful to Oklahoma’s children.
Another part of “advocacy” is to make certain Oklahomans who go to the polls are informed about what their representatives and senators have done for or to children, and what candidates say they will do if given the offices they seek. That is the purpose behind our Children’s Legislative Scorecard and Candidate Survey.
We are not in the business of “gotcha” politics. Our scorecard and survey are designed to get answers you need when you make your decisions about candidates. Our purpose is simple: Make Oklahoma a better state for its children. We pledge to continue doing our best to keep Oklahomans informed and working with elected officials at every level to continue improving the quality of life for those who have no other voice at the State Capitol, our children.
About OICA: The Oklahoma Institute for Child Advocacy was established in 1983 by a group of citizens seeking to create a strong advocacy network that would provide a voice for the needs of children and youth in Oklahoma, particularly those in the state’s care and those growing up amid poverty, violence, abuse and neglect, disparities, or other situations that put their lives and future at risk. Our mission statement: “Creating awareness, taking action, and changing policy to improve the health, safety, and well-being of Oklahoma’s children.”