Politics and Government
6:45 pm
Tue July 22, 2014

Fallin Rejects Ritze Call For ‘Catastrophic Health Emergency'

Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin.
Credit jadedtom / Flickr.com

Governor Mary Fallin’s office on Tuesday rejected a call by Rep. Mike Ritze to declare a Catastrophic Health Emergency to address issues related to the immigrant children being held at Fort Sill.

“It is our belief that the (Catastrophic Health Emergency Act) offers a very narrow interpretation of what a ‘health emergency’ is and when a CHE can be declared by the governor, wrote Steve Mullins, Fallin’s general counsel, in a Tuesday letter to Ritze. “We do not believe that the current health concerns at Fort Sill have met that threshold.” 

On July 14, Ritze, R-Broken Arrow, announced he had sent letters to Fallin Attorney General Scott Pruitt, Oklahoma Commissioner of Health Terry Cline and state representatives in the Lawton area encouraging them to do all they can to ensure the protection of Oklahoma citizens from contagious diseases following the federal government's decision to house illegal immigrant children at Ft. Sill.

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Health Care Exchanges
6:31 pm
Tue July 22, 2014

A Q&A On ‘Obamacare’ Court Rulings

Credit Lora Zibman / Flickr Creative Commons

On Tuesday, two federal appeals courts issued conflicting rulings on the legality of tax subsidies being provided to people who bought “Obamacare” health insurance policies in Oklahoma and 35 other states.

Here’s a look at the rulings’ potential impact in Oklahoma.

I’m confused. What did the courts rule today?

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OSBI
6:18 pm
Tue July 22, 2014

Advanced Investigative Academy Graduates 34 Agents

Credit Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation

Thirty-four agents are graduating from the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation Advanced Investigative Academy.

The agents graduated Tuesday from the academy.

Agents hired since 2007 attended the six-week academy to learn advanced skills in areas such as blood stain pattern analysis, investigative interviewing and advanced interrogation techniques and crime scene investigations.

The Bureau planned an academy a few years ago, but budget constraints would not allow for it.

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Rep. Mike Ritze
4:29 pm
Tue July 22, 2014

Oklahoma Legislator Wants Immigrant Children Quarantined

Rep. Mike Ritze
Credit Oklahoma State Legislature

A state lawmaker who is one of two doctors in the Oklahoma Legislature is insisting that unaccompanied immigrant minors being housed at Fort Sill be quarantined.

Republican state Rep. Mike Ritze of Broken Arrow said Tuesday he wants the federal government to provide documentation that all of the children at Fort Sill have been medically screened and don't pose a health risk.

More than 860 minors are currently being housed at the southwest Oklahoma Army post near Lawton.

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Health
3:14 pm
Tue July 22, 2014

Obama's Health Care Law Has A Confusing Day In Court

Originally published on Tue July 22, 2014 6:10 pm

Another wild legal ride for Obamacare on Tuesday: Two U.S. Court of Appeals panels issued conflicting decisions on an issue with the potential to gut the health care overhaul.

The two rulings could lead to another U.S. Supreme Court showdown over the controversial law, all because of what one of the law's opponents initially called "a glitch."

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Health Care Law
12:58 pm
Tue July 22, 2014

OK Attorney General: D.C. Court's Decision Could Affect Oklahoma Lawsuit

Oklahoma Attorney General E. Scott Pruitt
Credit Oklahoma Attorney General E. Scott Pruitt / Facebook

Update 3:15pm: see NPR's story about another court decision that affirms the federal health care law, saying the state exchanges set up by the federal government can offer subsidies to people who purchase insurance through those subsidies.

 

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World Views
11:58 am
Tue July 22, 2014

Small Scenes, Big Issues: Poet Captures Day-to-Day Existence In U.S., Venezuela

Brian Hardzinski KGOU

Venezuelan poet Arturo Gutierrez-Plaza has spent his career crafting poems exploring the scenes of everyday life. He told KGOU’s World Views he views poetry as a way to maintain the experience of childhood discovery as you learn new words, and how to use those words to unfold the tapestry of language.

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Health
10:50 am
Tue July 22, 2014

The Immigrant Kids Have Health Issues — But Not The Ones You'd Think

Two young girls, part of the wave of unaccompanied children who've illegally entered the U.S., watch a soccer match at the Customs and Border Protection Nogales Placement Center in Arizona.
Ross D. Franklin AP

Originally published on Tue July 22, 2014 1:43 pm

Close to 60,000 children have crossed illegally into the U.S. since last October. They've sparked a crisis. But is it a humanitarian crisis or a public health one?

The children carry "swine flu, dengue fever, Ebola virus, and tuberculosis," and can spread the diseases to the U.S., wrote Rep. Phil Gingrey, R-Ga., a retired obstetrician-gynecologist, in a July 7 letter to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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The Two-Way
8:21 am
Tue July 22, 2014

Rubio: U.S. Cannot Admit All Children Seeking Asylum

Rubio, seen here addressing the National Press Club in May, told NPR he'll decide on a presidential run in the next few months
Alex Wong Getty

Originally published on Tue July 22, 2014 12:24 pm

Sen. Marco Rubio argued that the nation's immigration laws need to be overhauled and said that Hillary Clinton would be a flawed candidate for president.

"I just think she's a 20th century candidate," he said. "I think she does not offer an agenda for moving America forward in the 21st century, at least not up till now."

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Oklahoma News
7:14 am
Tue July 22, 2014

Study: 1 In 4 Oklahoma Kids Live In Poverty

Credit Annie E. Casey Foundation

A new national study shows that nearly 1 in 4 children in Oklahoma live in poverty and the number of children living in high-poverty areas has more than doubled since 2000.

The 25th annual Kids Count report released Tuesday by the Baltimore-based Annie E. Casey Foundation ranked Oklahoma 39th in 16 indicators across four areas: economic well-being, education, health and family and community. The state dropped from 36th in 2013, one of the largest declines in the United States.

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