OKLAHOMA CITY — A newly formed political action committee will ask candidates running for office to sign what they call an anti-corruption pledge.
Clean Up Oklahoma filed its organizational statement with the Oklahoma Ethics Commission on April 1.
He will ask candidates filing statewide, legislative and other nominations to sign the pledge.
“The amount of corruption that has actually happened in the last four or five years is just disgusting,” said Cindy Alexander, a 63-year-old retired veterinarian from Stillwater. “Using taxpayers’ money to line the pockets of our elected officials who give more money to political donors is reprehensible. I’m just fed up.
Alexander, who chairs the political action committee, is a Republican who recently transitioned from a Democrat.
“I really don’t think partying is a problem in this effort,” Alexander said.
She said one of the main incidents of corruption is the lack of criminal action resulting from the audit of Epic, a charter school whose founders are accused of improperly using millions of dollars from the state taxpayers.
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The group notes several other cases of corruption and questionable activities.
The pledge is intended to prevent politicians, staff, family members and their donors from cashing in at taxpayer expense.
He supports a two-year ban on elected officials and their staff from lobbying once they leave government.
It aims to compel politicians to disclose their tax returns and any income generated regulated by the state or generated by state contract.
If a public figure can take money through taxes and distribute it, “I think I have a right to know how you make your money,” Alexander said.
The pledge supports an independent redistricting commission.
It aims to subject the Oklahoma legislature to the Oklahoma Open Records Act.
Proponents say Oklahoma is among the few states that does not subject the legislature to the Open Records Act.
He opposes efforts to make it harder for voters to put questions on the ballot or veto laws passed by the Legislative Assembly.
“The Legislature is trying to limit that right by making it harder to get state questions on the ballot and by making it harder to pass once they’re on the ballot,” Alexander said.
The pledge supports a process of recalling elected officials.
The group plans to ask those who apply to sign the pledge.
Filing for statewide, legislative, judicial and other nominations is Wednesday through Friday at the Capitol.
“Hopefully we’ll see some effectiveness from this push,” said Erika Wright, 49, who does sales and marketing for her family’s construction business and is supporting the effort. “If a politician can’t sign an anti-corruption pledge, he has no reason to be in power, whatever.”
Wright, who is from Noble, is currently a registered Republican, but in the past has been a Democrat and an independent.
“The fight against corruption is something that all Oklahomans, regardless of politics, should be able to support,” she said.
A copy of the pledge can be found at: www.CleanUpOklahoma.org.
The group said it would disclose its donors.
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