Right-Wing Shenanigans in Oklahoma

The Democratic Party doesn’t have a monopoly on shenanigans, as evident by a scandal that recently surfaced in the state of Oklahoma.

From Tulsa news station KOTV: “Allegations of scandal and a cover-up at the Oklahoma Capitol surfaced Wednesday after a published report said state Rep. Dan Kirby, R-Tulsa, allegedly sexually harassed and then fired his legislative assistant in 2015 after she rebuffed his advances. According to the report, the legislative assistant was a woman named Hollie Bishop, 28. . . News 9 obtained records that show the payments were made last month. Bishop received a total $28,414.20 marked under “Legal Settlements.” Her lawyers received $16,085.80 filed under housekeeping and cleaning supplies. All of it done before a lawsuit was filed and behind closed doors.”

So, state tax dollars were used to pay the woman harassed by Kirby, and the situation was handled behind closed doors by the GOP-controlled Oklahoma House of Representatives. Thus, voters in Kirby’s district had no idea of what transpired when they reelected him in November of this year.

“”The House of Representatives had no right to pay that money out on behalf of an out of control member,” former Rep. Mike Reynolds, R-Oklahoma City, said. . . Reynolds said his concern is over who signed the checks, alleging every payment must be approved by the Speaker of the House. It is still unclear who signed the payments. Former House Speaker Jeff Hickman did not return a call for comment.”

Jeff Hickman couldn’t be reelected this year because of term limits on members of the Oklahoma legislature. It remains to be seen if he experiences any negative consequences for his role in this scandal.

As for Dan Kirby . . .

From the Tulsa World: “State Rep. Dan Kirby resigned Friday night after three days of public outrage over the secretive settlement paid to a fired legislative assistant who had accused him of sexual harassment. The resignation is effective Dec. 31.”

In his resignation letter, Kirby writes, “Recent events have caused a situation where my continuing in office would be such a distraction that I could not serve my constituents in the manner they deserve.”

Recent events have caused a situation? If Kirby were a Democrat, then the Oklahoma GOP would be scolding him for refusing to accept responsibility for causing this scandal in the first place.

In a 01/25/16 letter to the Oklahoma House of Representatives, Hollie Bishop’s attorney states, “Ms. Bishop was sexually harassed by Rep. Dan Kirby and wrongfully terminated in retaliation for reporting said harassment.”

The letter also states that Bishop was not told the reason for the termination of her employment.

Folks, this situation reeks with corruption.

Being that Oklahoma’s House of Representatives is under the control of the Oklahoma GOP, Ricky Ricardo would say to the latter . . .

Happy Hanukkah!
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