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Oklahoma Politics

Gov. Mary Fallin delivers the 2014 State of the State address as Lt. Gov. Todd Lamb and House Speaker T.W. Shannon (R-Lawton) look on - February 3, 2014.
Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

Gov. Mary Fallin is proposing a .25 percent reduction in Oklahoma's income tax rate.

Fallin made the proposal Monday while delivering her State of the State address at the start of the 2014 Oklahoma Legislature.

Katsrcool / Flickr Creative Commons

The first Monday in February means the parking lots are full surrounding the domed building at the intersection of NE 23rd Street and Lincoln Blvd. in Oklahoma City. Here are five things political scientists and state capitol reporters expect to see between now and the end of May.

Gov. Mary Fallin addresses reporters during an Associated Press Legislative Forum at the State Capitol - January 29, 2013.
Governor Mary Fallin / Facebook

Gov. Mary Fallin says Oklahoma voters should weigh in on what to do about school safety.

Fallin on Wednesday suggested that schools be given one-time authority to increase their bond limits so they can build tornado shelters or make other safety improvements on campus. She said she was heartbroken by the loss of life at a Moore elementary school last May.

hubbardforcongress2014

A Canadian County rancher and business owner says he will challenge 10-term U.S. Rep. Frank Lucas for the Republican nomination in Oklahoma's 3rd Congressional District.

Robert Hubbard told The Associated Press on Monday: "We need to make some changes."

The 69-year-old Republican will formally announce his candidacy Monday afternoon at the Oklahoma History Center.

Ken Rudin, the "Political Junkie" formerly of NPR, writes in his weekly column Oklahoma's upcoming Senate race has all the makings of, once again, another Republican family feud between the conservative and the very conservative wing of the party.

Oklahoma Capitol Building
ana branca / Flickr

Oklahoma legislators will begin budget briefings with various state agencies amid projections they will have about $170 million less to spend on state programs this year.

Members of House and Senate budget subcommittees will begin hearing presentations on Tuesday at the state Capitol.

State Sen. Kim David chairs the subcommittee that oversees funding for health and human services. She and her counterpart on the House subcommittee will meet with officials from nearly a dozen state agencies over the next two days.

VIDEO: Coburn To Leave Senate Seat

Jan 16, 2014
Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) greeting President Barack Obama.
Tom Coburn / Facebook

U.S. Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) announced Thursday evening he will leave behind his Senate seat at the end of this Congress. That will leave two years remaining in his term.

The end of the current session is January 2015.

An email from Coburn's office said the decision to leave was not because of his health. He is a cancer survivor and was recently diagnosed with cancer again.

State Rep. Joe Dorman (D-Rush Springs)
Oklahoma House of Representatives

R.J. Harris has dropped out as a Democratic candidate forOklahoma governor.

Harris made the announcement on his website Wednesday and says he's endorsing Democratic state Rep. Joe Dorman in the race. Harris, who's previously run for office as a Republican and an independent candidate, says he's supporting Dorman because Dorman is "socially tolerant and fiscally conservative."

Republican Gov. Mary Fallin is running for her second term in office. She faces a GOP primary challenge from former state Sen. Randy Brogdon, who filed paperwork last month to run for governor.

State Rep. Al McAffrey at a bill signing with Gov. Brad Henry - September 13, 2009.
Tiddled / Wikimedia Commons

Former Oklahoma Gov. Brad Henry has become a shareholder and been elected director of a CFS2, a Tulsa-based debt collection company.

The company announced in a press release Thursday that Henry's role will be in the strategic and capital planning process.

Henry said in a statement the company focuses on "nontraditional ways to help consumers overcome financial difficulties."

The company was founded in 2010 by Bill Bartmann, who previously founded the debt-collection company Commercial Financial Services.

The Oklahoma Employment Security Commission will ask lawmakers to consider a number of changes to its statutes during the upcoming legislative session, commission members were told Tuesday.

Among those changes, John Miley, OESC general counsel, told the commissioners will be an amendment that allows victims of domestic violence who have been forced to leave their jobs and apply for unemployment benefits to provide evidence, particularly testimony, rather than documentation in appeals before hearing officers.

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