What is the difference between Gov. Mary Fallin and former Gov. Brad Henry?
Not much in terms of results.
Henry, a liberal Democrat, aimed to grow state government and he did. Fallin, a Republican who claims to be conservative, grew state government in a time of declining revenues.
Henry pushed for higher fees and taxes. Fallin got a cigarette tax and raised taxes on every Oklahoman who buys a car.
Henry brought casino gambling and a lottery to Oklahoma. Fallin, who ran on family values, expanded the lottery.
Henry welcomed federal intrusion into public education and Fallin did nothing to slow it down.
Henry supported pro-life bills in his first term. In his second term, he supported abortion rights. Fallin supported pro-life bills in her first term and then vetoed the best bill to stop abortion in her second term.
Henry followed all the instructions of the powerful businessmen in the energy industry and Fallin doesn’t make a move without accepting their advice – whether it’s good or bad.
It’s amazing that Oklahoma, one of the most conservative and Christian states in America, has not had a conservative governor since Frank Keating left office in 1992.
For 100 years, liberal Democrats dominated state politics. They still do, but now they have registered as Republicans because you can’t get elected as a Democrat on a statewide basis anymore.
In their second terms, Brad Henry and Mary Fallin had no reason to disguise their true ideologies. Fallin is not a fiscal conservative, she is only pro-life when it’s convenient and she has facilitated the growth of the sale of alcohol and expansion of gambling.
Oklahoma needs to do much better in 2018 when electing a new governor.