Yukon, Okla. – Congressman Frank Lucas (R-Okla.) released the following statement upon Senate confirmation of Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt to take on the role of Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA):
“I’m glad the Senate acted to confirm Scott Pruitt as administrator of the EPA today,” said Congressman Lucas. “His confirmation is a major step toward restoring common sense and rule of law at the agency. Scott has a strong understanding of the critical role states play in the regulatory process and the importance of sound science in policymaking. I look forward to working with him to protect our country’s precious natural resources while ensuring American families have access to affordable energy and good paying jobs.”Read More
Washington, D.C. – Congressman Frank Lucas will hold town hall meetings in Creek, Lincoln, Logan and Canadian counties on Wednesday, February 22 through Friday, February 24. Residents of these locations are invited to attend and share their thoughts on current events in Washington. Lucas will be discussing his work in Congress, taking questions about issues important to constituents of the Third Congressional District and asking for input on legislation currently before Congress.
Wednesday, February 22, 2017
Creek County Town Hall Meeting
1:30 – 2:30 p.m.
Collins Building (2nd Floor Ballroom)
317 E Lee
Sapulpa, OK 74066
Lincoln County Town Hall Meeting
3:30 – 4:30 p.m.
Rt. 66 Interpretive Center
400 E Hwy 66
Chandler, OK 74834
Thursday, February 23, 2017
Logan County Town Hall Meeting
10:30 – 11:30 a.m.
Oklahoma Territorial Museum
406 E Oklahoma Avenue
Guthrie, OK 73044
Friday, February 24, 2017
Canadian County Town Hall Meeting
10:00 – 11:00 a.m.
Events at 10 West Main
10 West Main Street
Yukon, OK 73099Read More
When I talk to many of the farmers, ranchers, and business owners in the Third District, the number one concern I hear about is government red tape. Whether it’s EPA’s Waters of the U.S. rule that placed confusing restrictions on what individuals can do with their private property or the arbitrary requirements Obamacare forces on employers, these rules and regulations accumulate into one major headache for folks trying to make a living.
In the past eight years the federal government has provided little relief under former President Obama.
Many of the bureaucrats behind the rules coming out of federal agencies have never themselves had to take on the risk of running a business – to hire employees, balance a budget, and contend with market competition or unpredictable economic factors. They haven’t had to deal with the price volatility many farmers and ranchers always have on their minds or the uncertainty behind planning for the next fiscal year.
For many small business owners, the added hours of paperwork alone present an overwhelming burden. This often unintended consequence of federal regulations leads to an uneven playing field. Larger corporations can afford to hire professionals to parse through new regulations while smaller businesses simply find themselves buried under a mountain of paperwork. Getting rid of particularly far-reaching and onerous regulations enables business owners to focus more of their time on what’s important: running a successful enterprise.
Regulations passed down by the federal government not only present a major time sink for businesses, they also siphon money out of our economy. Money that could otherwise be put toward hiring more workers, investing in new equipment, or even consumer spending.
In their latest annual study, the Competitive Enterprise Institute found that the cost of government regulations on the U.S. economy reached $1.885 trillion in 2015. This adds up to nearly $15,000 per American household each year.
Fortunately, Congress and the White House are eager to do everything we can to encourage economic opportunity and growth.
For one, the Congressional Review Act provides Congress with the ability to review and repeal any regulation from the past few months. We have already used and will continue to use this tool as a way of unwinding many of the Obama administration’s last minute rules and regulations, including arbitrary restrictions on our country’s energy producers and costly and time-consuming burdens placed on educators.
Coming into the new year, Congress has worked to tackle overregulation at an unprecedented pace. Members of Congress have brought up 37 separate resolutions to repeal various last minute regulations pushed through by the Obama administration.
President Trump has set the stage for cleaning up government overregulation by issuing an executive order that requires federal agencies to eliminate two regulations for every new one adopted. This will hopefully force various government agencies to rethink and optimize their approach to rulemaking.
The House and Senate will also address some of the more burdensome regulations and laws that are the source of much of the overregulation holding back our economy.
Dodd-Frank, for example, created thousands of pages of rules that many financial institutions, especially smaller banks, are having trouble navigating. This increasingly complex red tape makes it more difficult for these banks to lend money to growing businesses, entrepreneurs, or families looking to purchase a home or car.
Obamacare is another major roadblock. The law not only impacts Americans’ access to quality health care, but also the ability for businesses to hire new employees. Employee coverage requirements under Obamacare are unrealistic for many small businesses, especially those who hire part time staff.
I look forward to working with my colleagues in Congress as we continue to identify and tackle instances of overregulation. Like pulling dandelions out of your front yard every year, the work of unwinding the regulatory regime takes time, but it can be done.Read More
Washington, D.C. – Congressman Frank Lucas (R-Okla.) released the following statement after President Trump announced his nomination of Judge Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court:
“President Trump’s nomination of Judge Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court will fill a nearly yearlong vacancy on the court and help move it towards a stricter interpretation of the Constitution,” said Congressman Lucas. “Judge Gorsuch has an impressive legal background and shares the late Justice Scalia’s belief in strictly adhering to the letter of the law. I am encouraged by the president’s nomination and hope the Senate will take action to ensure the Supreme Court can move forward in its work with a full bench.”Read More
Washington, D.C. – Congressman Frank Lucas (R-Okla.) released the following statement in response to an executive order issued by the Trump administration to temporarily suspend the entry of refugees and issuance of visas for individuals from Iran, Iraq, Syria, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen:
“Our country has a strong record of providing asylum to those fleeing war or oppression. However, we must also acknowledge that the world is a dangerous place. Far too many innocent civilians have fallen victim to organized terror attacks at home in their own communities.
“When the FBI Director indicates that there are vulnerabilities in our country’s ability to screen foreign entrants, the American people have a right to expect swift action by our government to remedy this issue.
“Rather than asking in retrospect what we can do better in the aftermath of an attack, it’s the duty and responsibility of our government to take every realistic precaution to properly screen all individuals, especially those from countries that are havens or state-sponsors of terrorism.
“While I support the goal of President Trump’s executive order to strengthen America’s national security, I believe the administration must further clarify their long term objectives and the manner in which they intend to implement these new travel restrictions.”
Washington, D.C. – Congressman Frank Lucas (R-Okla.) released the following statement after news of President Trump’s executive actions to strengthen American border security:
“We will never have a successful immigration system in this country unless we take big steps to secure our southern border,” said Congressman Lucas. “I applaud President Trump’s swift action to strengthen our nation’s border security and I look forward to working with his administration to protect the safety of all Americans and to tackle the issue of illegal immigration.”Read More
By: Congressman Frank Lucas, Congressman Tom Cole, Congressman Jim Bridenstine, Congressman Markwayne Mullin, Congressman Steve Russell
WASHINGTON— Obamacare has failed Americans all across the nation. But Oklahoma in particular is a case study for its failure and the negative impact on insured individuals. As a state that saw 2017 premiums increase an average of 76 percent and as one of only five states with just one insurer participating in the federal exchange, you could argue that Oklahoma has been hit the hardest by Obama’s failed health care policy. All five of our congressional districts have constituents who are adversely impacted by Obamacare.
A small business owner in Oklahoma City believes that Obamacare is negatively impacting his business. Graciously, he has always paid for half of his employee’s health insurance premiums. In three years under Obamacare, this employer’s out of pocket expenses have more than doubled. Obamacare has given him two choices: drop the health insurance benefit and potentially lose quality employees, or go out of business.
A mother of three was an accountant before quitting to raise her family and help her husband start his small business, so when Obamacare came along, she knew how to analyze their options. She made the rational decision to pay the fines, save the value of premiums and high deductibles, and effectively self-insure. Under Obamacare, she became uninsured, and she will be thousands of dollars ahead – as long as she avoids catastrophic illness.
After celebrating a successful harvest, a cotton farming family in southwest Oklahoma was shocked when they learned their health insurance premiums would nearly double under Obamacare. All of their concerns about issues like EPA’s Waters of the U.S. rule or the continuation of certain Farm Bill provisions suddenly paled in comparison to Obamacare. They’re now worried that the sudden spike in expenses for their family, not to mention a $6,000 deductible, threatens the future of their farming operation.
One couple in rural Oklahoma was forced to sell their small business a few years ago due to the husband’s sharp decline in health. When they signed up for Obamacare, the most affordable option was a $6,000 deductible and a $1,200 copay. Even worse, the prescriptions they need to fill are “Tier 4,” the section that has the highest copay. All doctors and hospitals under their plan are far from their home and it is almost impossible to schedule a timely appointment with a doctor when they find themselves ill.
A Southern Baptist pastor in eastern Oklahoma is well taken care of by his church, except they do not provide health insurance. His family’s previous health care plan was cancelled in December, so he used Healthcare.gov, which failed to function properly, and was left with a plan that more than tripled their premium. A steadfast believer, the pastor is left with only the belief that God will provide for his pregnant wife, two year old son, and the baby on the way.
Sadly, these stories represent only a sliver of the number of Oklahomans feeling the ill effects of Obamacare. More and more Oklahomans are grappling with the crippling consequences of a failed health care law that is anything but affordable. It doesn’t take long to find a neighbor, a friend, or a community member who is suffering the ill effects of Obamacare. More than 4.7 million Americans were kicked off their health care plan after being promised that they could keep it. Sixty percent of Americans have seen an increase in their deductibles in addition to the average 22 percent increase in their 2017 premiums. The burden Obamacare placed on families, employers, and individuals never seems to end.
Thankfully, House Republicans want to make sure the Obamacare buck stops here. Our goal is to bring the American people more choices and lower costs, without mandating your plan or your coverage. By opening a free market to encourage competing plans and options, Americans can return once again to a health care market that provides access to affordable and reliable health insurance for Americans everywhere, particularly in our home state of Oklahoma.Read More
Today the U.S. House unanimously approved H.R. 353, the Lucas-Bridenstine Weather Research and Forecasting Innovation Act. This legislation prioritizes protecting lives and property.
“Every minute counts in the lead up before a major storm or tornado,” said Congressman Frank Lucas. “This legislation helps to give those in harm’s way additional disaster preparation time which could ultimately be the difference between life and death or thousands of dollars in property damage. I am encouraged that the House has taken action on this critical matter and hope to see these life-saving policies enacted soon.”
“Our aim is to have zero deaths from tornadoes and other extreme weather events,” said Congressman Jim Bridenstine. “This bill gets us closer to that day. I thank my House colleagues for their support, and anticipate swift Senate passage and that the President will sign it into law.”
This legislation is the product of a bipartisan effort. It directs the Administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) to focus resources and effort to:
· Rebalance NOAA funding to place a higher priority on weather-related research and activities;
· Emphasize developing accurate forecasts and timely warnings of high impact weather events;
· Create programs to extend warning lead times and improve forecasts for tornadoes and hurricanes;
· Develop a plan to utilize advanced technology to regain U.S. superiority in weather modeling and forecasts;
· Increase focus and continue development of seasonal forecasts and how to maximize information from these forecasts; and
· Enhance coordination among various federal government weather stakeholders.
The legislation also authorizes and extends a NOAA pilot program already under way thanks to a partnership between the House Science Space and Technology and the House Appropriations Committee. Under this pilot program, NOAA has already issued two contracts to procure commercial satellite weather data. This pilot program could bring about a paradigm shift in how NOAA makes decisions about future procurement of critical weather data.
House Science, Space, and Technology Committee Chairman Lamar Smith added, "Americans from coast to coast will now be better prepared for severe weather with the passage of the Weather Research and Forecasting Innovation Act. This bill has been four years in the making and is long overdue. It will transform our nation’s weather gathering efforts and help save lives and property. This legislation strengthens the underlying atmospheric science while simultaneously advancing innovative technology and reforming operations to provide better weather data, models, and forecasts. America can thank Reps. Lucas and Bridenstine for leading this innovation initiative. We look forward to the Senate approving this bill soon."
The Washington Post called this “the first major piece of weather legislation adopted since the early 1990s.” The legislation, originally introduced in the House in 2013, passed the House in 2015, and last December the Senate approved an amended version. Provisions in the bill approved today are nearly identical to the Senate version, so we can anticipate swift passage again in the Senate and presentation to the President for signing into law.
Links to videos of remarks on the House floor:
Congressman Lucas- https://youtu.be/FmXeb1z7RTw
Congressman Bridenstine- https://youtu.be/tvR19_RzbDw
Chairman Smith- https://youtu.be/bWvm6IeBZnsRead More
Washington, D.C. – Congressman Frank Lucas (OK-3) today voted to pass the Regulations from the Executive in Need of Scrutiny (REINS) Act, legislation to increase the role of Congress in the oversight and review of executive agency rulemaking. The bill requires congressional approval for any major executive action that impacts the U.S. economy by an amount greater than $100 million or would drastically increase prices on consumer goods for Americans.
“The Obama administration’s regulatory regime of the past eight years has cost the U.S. economy billions of dollars,” said Congressman Lucas. “A big part of getting our economy back on track and Americans back to work is to remove the regulatory burdens that are restraining growth and opportunity.”
“As one of the first bills of the 115th Congress, the REINS Act is a serious step toward curbing overregulation and returning to common sense in the way we govern.”Read More
“An Osage leader is never at the back of his band of warriors” – Dr. James Crowder, historian at Tinker Air Force Base
Clarence Leonard Tinker was the first Native American to attain the rank of Major General. Growing up in Pawhuska, Oklahoma, he revered the heroism of Osage military veterans and idolized the legends of Osage bravery in warfare. As a Major General during the Second World War, Clarence Tinker was not expected to enter direct combat, let alone lead a unit headfirst into front lines. Yet Tinker’s Osage upbringing instilled in him the importance of leading the fight himself. Sadly, Clarence was the first General to die in combat during WWII. He was shot down June 7, 1942 while flying a mission over the Pacific during the Battle of Midway.
Tinker’s values were rooted in his Oklahoma upbringing. He spoke the Osage language and always maintained a close relationship with his father throughout his entire life.
Today, the Tinker Air Force Base in Midwest City bears the namesake of Major General Clarence Tinker. It is home to the 72nd Air Base Wing, providing material, support, and logistics for our nation’s armed forces. They have established themselves as an indispensable component of our country’s defense apparatus. Which is why it’s fitting the base is named after an Oklahoman who broke barriers, demonstrated tremendous leadership, and courageously laid down his life in combat.
Those who serve at Tinker are representatives of the Oklahoma Way. They were some of the first responders at the Murrah building in the aftermath of the Oklahoma City bombing. And when so many homes and businesses were destroyed in the wake of the tornado in May 1999, Tinker servicemen and women were immediately on the ground providing humanitarian aid and support.
Veteran’s Day is a moment to reflect on the legacy of those, like Maj. Gen. Tinker, who served our country. It’s a day to reflect on their sacrifices, their selflessness and their sense of duty that prompted them to join our nation’s armed services. Oklahoma is home to roughly 340,000 veterans and 20,000 active duty military personnel and I’m proud of the way our state has built upon this tremendous legacy of service.
One of the great honors of my job is to meet with these men and women and their families to hear their stories. These are folks who have served in World War II, the Korean War, Vietnam and the War on Terror. Many of them recall with great detail their experience in uniform and how it shaped their lives forever. I am always humbled by the overwhelming sense of patriotism I hear from our veterans of past wars – many of them only teenagers when they first answered the call to serve their country.
Maj. Gen. Clarence Tinker was a man who made everyone – his family, his community and his country – proud. Oklahoma is fortunate to have Tinker’s story as a part of our state’s history.
Seventy years have passed since he was lost in combat but the memory and pride for Maj. Gen. Tinker’s service has not faded. At their annual In-lon-shka celebration, the Osage honor military veterans, including Tinker, with a ceremonial song and dance performance. These are closely held traditions passed between many generations. The way the Osage community comes together to honor those who have served sets a remarkable example for the rest of us.
So on this day, I hope that we can take a moment to pay respects to all our veterans whose individual stories, small and large, paint a greater portrait about what it truly means to serve your country. If it weren’t for them, we could not enjoy the freedom, prosperity and peace we have today.Read More
2311 Rayburn HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Congressman Frank Lucas is a fifth generation Oklahoman whose family has lived and farmed in Oklahoma for over 100 years. Born on January 6, 1960 in Cheyenne, Oklahoma, Lucas graduated from Oklahoma State University in 1982 with a degree in Agricultural Economics. He was first elected to the United States House of Representatives in a special election in 1994, and is currently serving his 11th term as a Member of Congress.
Frank proudly represents Oklahoma’s Third Congressional District includes all or portions of 32 counties in northern and western Oklahoma, stretching from the Oklahoma panhandle to parts of Tulsa, and from Yukon to Altus in the southwest. It takes up almost half the state’s land mass and is one of the largest agricultural regions in the nation. Lucas has been a crusader for the American farmer since being elected to Congress in 1994 as well as working to protect Oklahoma values.
Congressman Lucas serves as the Chairman of the House Committee on Agriculture. In addition, he serves on the House Committee on Financial Services and the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology.
Frank also serves as a member of the Republican Whip Team. The Republican Whip Team is led by Congressman Kevin McCarthy (CA-22). The representatives who are members of the team serve as leaders in their party and work with the Republican leadership team to ensure every American’s voice is heard in Congress.
Prior to his service in the U.S. Congress, Lucas served for five and a half years in the Oklahoma State House of Representatives, where he tirelessly defended the rights of private property owners and focused on promoting agriculture issues.
Frank and his wife Lynda have three children and one grandchild. The Lucas family belongs to the First Baptist Church in Cheyenne.
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