Ryan LaCroix / Oklahoma Public Media Exchange

Supreme Court Says Ten Commandments Must Come Down, GOP Lawmakers Suggest Impeachment

The Oklahoma Supreme Court ruled Tuesday the Ten Commandments monument at the state Capitol has to be removed because it violates the state constitution’s ban on using public property to benefit a religion. Justices ruled 7-2 the monument erected in 2012 indirectly benefits Judeo-Christian faiths because the Ten Commandments are “obviously religious in nature.” Attorney General Scott Pruitt disagreed with the ruling, saying the state’s high court incorrectly interpreted Article 2, Section 5...
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Ryan LaCroix / Oklahoma Public Media Exchange

The Oklahoma Supreme Court ruled Tuesday the Ten Commandments monument at the state Capitol has to be removed because it violates the state constitution’s ban on using public property to benefit a religion.

Justices ruled 7-2 the monument erected in 2012 indirectly benefits Judeo-Christian faiths because the Ten Commandments are “obviously religious in nature.”

a school classroom with empty chairs
comedy_nose / Flickr Creative Commons

Oklahoma is writing new academic standards in math and English that in some ways go beyond the current standards and the now-repealed Common Core goals, according to a review of initial drafts by Oklahoma Watch.

The drafts show, for example, that elementary-school students would have to write research papers and learn the use and concepts of American currency. High school students would be expected to grasp the “whys” behind math formulas.

"I voted" in the Cherokee language. / Cherokee Nation

The Cherokee Nation Election Commission certified results Monday showing Principal Chief Bill John Baker won a second term.

Baker earned roughly 53 percent of the vote. He needed 50 percent to avoid a runoff with any of the other four candidates, including his predecessor, former Principal Chief Chad Smith, state Rep. Will Fourkiller, and Charlie Soap, the widow of former Principal Chief Wilma Mankiller.

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday issued the last of its opinions for this term — on the death penalty, anti-pollution regulations and the power of independent commissions to draw congressional and state legislative districts. In addition, the court issued a set of orders that set up cases to be heard next term on affirmative action and abortion.

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday dealt a major blow to death penalty opponents, upholding the use of a controversial drug as part of a three-drug execution cocktail. The vote was 5-4, with unusually passionate and sometimes bitter opinions from the majority and dissenting justices.

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Monday that the Environmental Protection Agency made a mistake when it told electric power plants to reduce mercury emissions. The high court says the EPA should first have considered how much it would cost power plants to do that.

The decision comes too late for most power companies, but it could affect future EPA regulations.

Mercury in the air is a health risk. When you burn coal or oil, you create airborne mercury that can end up in fish we eat and cause serious health problems.

Supreme Court Upholds Use Of Execution Drug

Jun 29, 2015

In a 5-4 decision, the Supreme Court has upheld the use of a controversial execution drug.

The case was brought by a group of Oklahoma inmates who argued that a drug used by the state constituted cruel and unusual punishment because it did not guarantee that prisoners would be unconscious when additional drugs were administered to stop their hearts.

The drug was used in three botched executions last year that appeared to leave prisoners in excruciating pain. The court ruled that the Oklahoma prisoners did not prove that a better drug was available.

A water line for hydraulic fracturing crosses an oil-field access road in Woods County, Okla.
Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

A federal judge in Wyoming this week delayed the start of new rules for fracking on federal lands, issuing a temporary stay to give the federal government more time to explain how it developed the rule, The Hill and Casper Star-Tribune report.

OG&E's coal-fired power plant in Muskogee, Okla.
Granger Meador / Flickr

In a 5-4 decision, the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday blocked the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s attempt to curb mercury and other toxic emissions from coal-fired power plants across the country.

House Majority Leader Carl Albert (D-Okla.) sits in the Oval Office with President Lyndon Johnson.
Lyndon B. Johnson Presidential Library

Southeast Oklahoma is an unusual place, politically. Many southerners settled in the area after the Civil War, leading to its nickname “Little Dixie.”

Through the 20th century, it became the center of political power in Oklahoma, and the Democratic Party dominated politics well into the late 1990s. Decades after the formerly “Solid South” had switched to the Republican Party, Democrats enjoyed an 8:1 voter registration advantage in southeast Oklahoma.

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