Since we met the March 11 deadline to hear Senate bills on the floor, the process has now started over, and we’ve been working on hearing House bills that were approved by their chamber in our committees. We must complete this committee work by our April 8 deadline.
While we’ve been focusing on our committees, we’ve also adopted a few resolutions off the floor. While resolutions don’t hold the weight of law, they are statement pieces that show the will of the majority of the legislative body. As you can imagine, most of these resolutions have revolved around state’s rights and federal overreach by the current presidential administration.
We adopted a resolution urging the U.S. Senate to reject H.R.1, the “For the People Act of 2021,” which would threaten the integrity of elections in Oklahoma and other states. The Constitution very clearly gives the authority and power to conduct elections to the states – not the federal government. If passed, H.R. 1 would federalize our election systems and void many of the laws in our state that ensure our safe and secure election process.
We also adopted a resolution calling for the creation of a National Federalism Task Force, which would convene a series of summits to develop plans for restoring and maintaining divisions in the powers, roles and responsibilities of the federal government and the states. We have local and state governments for a reason, and I firmly believe that local control works best. We must fight back against big government and federal overreach that is already beginning under the current administration.
Aside from our work at the Capitol, I’ve also been busy across the district. I was able to participate in a virtual town hall with the Northwest Oklahoma Alliance. We discussed what’s happening at the Capitol, as well as other legislative issues pertinent to rural Oklahoma.
Enid Day at the Capitol was on Tuesday and was held at the John Groendyke Building at the Wildlife Center. Participants met with Senate President Pro Tempore Greg Treat, as well as our Enid area legislators. About 25 people attended the annual event, it was good to see people from back home serving and representing their communities.
I was also thrilled to participate in the Oklahoma Youth Expo’s Legislative Showmanship competition a few weeks ago during the expo in Oklahoma City. OYE is the world’s largest junior livestock show, and truly an impressive event that draws attention and praise from folks in the livestock industry across the nation.
This year I was paired with McCoy Landwehr from the Drummond FFA Chapter, and he helped me show his heifer, Midge. Although we didn’t win the competition, it was a great night of fellowship meeting and learning from our young agriculturalists. No doubt the future of our industry is bright.
I also headed up the Senate campaign to raise premium sale money for students who qualified for the OYE Sale of Champions. All in all, 32 Senators donated funds totaling $4,400 to give as “bonuses” to our constituents that made the auction. This is an extremely tough sale to make – only approximately one percent of the animals entered in the show actually qualify for the Sale of Champions. Kudos to all of those students who made the sale, as well as those who fell short. I know it’s tough, but I applaud the hard work and perseverance it took to even get to the show, especially in a year full of uncertainty.
I hope you enjoyed time with your family celebrating our risen Savior over the Easter holiday.
Thank you for allowing me to be serve as our state Senator. Please feel free to reach out if there is anything we can help you with. You can contact me at 405-521-5630 or via email at Roland.Pederson@oksenate.gov.