In Oklahoma the Republicans now have control over both the house and the senate - for the first time in OK history. While it might be difficult to wrap your head around how Oklahoma can move in the opposite direction of the rest of the country, it isn't hard to understand what this means for women and families in Oklahoma.
The new leadership at the Oklahoma Capitol has not been shy about their goals - one of which is putting emphasis on "pro-life" values (read: anti-choice initiatives that restrict access to abortion and other reproductive health services). The Oklahoman reported yesterday, "...anti-abortion legislation could come to the forefront with Republicans controlling both the House and the Senate. Although lawmakers say they’ll work to find common ground, they could clash on key issues.
Also from the same article:
"We’re a pro-life party,” said House Speaker Chris Benge, R-Tulsa. "Social values are very important to House Republicans, and we believe that a strong family is vital to allowing your state to flourish and to be successful.”
To someone who understands the rhetoric of anti-choice lawmakers, this quote scares me. You should be frightened too, because what Rep. Benge is saying is that we are going to continue chipping away at the right to choice, constinue to support abstinence-only-until-marriage programs, deny the effectiveness of comprehensive sex education, and we will do whatever we can to make impede abortion access in this state.
This scares me, does it scare you?