Blake Ewing Challenges Candidates to Buy Locally
District 4 City Council candidate Blake Ewing's public relations firm revved up its campaign engines. A press release from the Engine Room, Ewing's public relations arm, issued a press release challenging his fellow candidates to spend their campaign dollars within city limits.
"Candidates are inundated with offers from companies outside the city for items like yard signs, stickers, banners, and more," Ewing said.
"I'd like us to serve our city throughout our campaigns and make the money count by at least spending it within the city of Tulsa. I'm making that commitment with my campaign, and I hope my fellow candidates will follow suit. I challenge all Tulsa City Council candidates, myself included, to spend all of our campaign dollars from this point forward within our city."
Ewing founded the Shop Tulsa Task Force in 2010. He has rapidly opened several small businesses (dubbed the "Mommaplex") in the Blue Dome District, a hip, historic district in downtown Tulsa.
Ewing's Republican competitor for the District 4 seat is Liz Hunt, who signed on with shadowy but successful political consultant Karl Ahlgren, who co-owns a political consulting firm, AH Strategies, based out of Oklahoma City.
Ahlgren refuses most media requests and charges high dollar for his top-notch services.
In response, Hunt said, "As a small business owner, I use only local Tulsa vendors for all of my business and client initiatives."
She also pointed out that she was part of a team that helped pass Buy Local legislation and was recently named 2011 Woman in Business Champion by the Tulsa Metro Chamber "for my efforts to enhance small business opportunities within Tulsa. According to public campaign finance reports, city council candidates raised more than $400,000 in contributions during the 2009 election season.
Fallin: Same Old Arguments Against Marijuana
Last week, the long-shot hope for legalizing weed in Oklahoma went up in smoke, at least according to Gov. Mary Fallin. As part of a Facebook town hall meeting, Fallin said she opposes marijuana, even for medicinal purposes.
"I'll just be right up-front with you and tell you that I oppose legalizing marijuana in Oklahoma," Fallin said.
The governor answered selected questions via streaming video. A few dozen asked about legalizing marijuana in Oklahoma.
During the Oklahoma Republican Party-sponsored online meeting, Fallin said, "One of the things that I find over and over and over that just frankly sickens my heart is the amount of substance abuse, drug abuse, that we have in the state of Oklahoma."
She said that out of 475 cases she looked through for July, Oklahoma inmates' problems stemmed from drug abuse. Fallin estimated 90 percent of these cases contained substance abuse.
Of course, cheap, easy and totally legal alcohol is a big part of what Fallin describes as "substance abuse," though the governor didn't offer to usher in a new Prohibition for the state.
She also had no opinion as to why these inmates, many of whom are at a socioeconomic disadvantage, would be drawn to substance abuse in the first place.
Fallin left no cliché unturned when she trotted out the usual Gateway Drug argument. "I just feel like that marijuana use -- if it's legalized -- will lead to possible other substance abuse," the governor said.
The governor also cited concern over smoked-down drivers causing accidents and abuse of legalized marijuana as reasons she opposed legalization.
According to the Oklahoma Safety Office's statistics for 2009, alcohol was involved in 838 automotive crashes in Tulsa County. Fifteen of these incidents were fatal and 81 were incapacitating.
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