KGOU
Members of the Oklahoma Commissioners of the Land Office, whose offices are located in a downtown Oklahoma City high rise, include Gov. Kevin Stitt and four other state officials. Brandt Vawter is currently acting secretary.
Oklahoma Watch

Stitt’s Pick For Land Office Lacks Required Degree, Faced Lawsuits

Gov. Kevin Stitt’s pick to head the Commissioners of the Land Office lacks the advanced degree needed to become permanent secretary and has owned a company involved in legal disputes over oil and gas leases.

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Inspired by her father's passion for military service, Denise Baken joined the Army in 1975 at age 24, looking to follow in his footsteps.

But the retired colonel didn't realize how closely her father's experience in the military mirrored her own until she faced challenges — both as a woman and an African American — over her 28 years of service.

President Trump has authorized the deployment of additional U.S. forces to the Middle East to strengthen air and missile defenses around Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, the Pentagon announced late Friday.

Defense Secretary Mark Esper called the move a first step and said the deployment would be defensive in nature. He said the deployment comes in response to requests for help from Saudi Arabia and the UAE.

Just two days after the Trump administration revoked California's right to set its own emissions standards for automobiles, the state has fired back.

California, 22 other states and several major cities filed a lawsuit in federal court Friday against the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, which is the division of the Department of Transportation that issued the rule revoking California's authority.

Walmart says it will stop selling electronic cigarettes, at namesake stores and Sam's Club locations. The nation's largest retailer is responding to growing health concerns around vaping, especially among young people.

Walmart cited "growing federal, state and local regulatory complexity and uncertainty regarding e-cigarettes," saying that its stores will stop selling e-cigarettes once the current inventory is sold.

In an exclusive interview with NPR, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi says she has not changed her mind on pursuing impeachment but is ready to change the law to restrain presidential power and make it clear that a sitting president can, in fact, be indicted.

Capitol Restoration Project

In this episode of Capitol Insider, KGOU's Dick Pryor and eCapitol's Shawn Ashley discuss several public employee pay raise requests and the state's maintenance backlog. Both could complicate the upcoming budgeting process.

Updated at 7:20 p.m. ET

President Trump blamed "a political hack job" for reports that a whistleblower has charged he had an improper conversation with a foreign leader.

The Washington Post on Friday reported that the conversation in question involves Ukraine.

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio ended his campaign for president on Friday morning, acknowledging that he was unable to successfully pitch his progressive ideas to the Democratic electorate.

"I feel like I have contributed all I can to this primary election. It's clearly not my time, so I'm going to end my presidential campaign," de Blasio said on MSNBC's Morning Joe.

De Blasio's exit makes him the sixth candidate to drop out of the field, bringing the total number of Democrats seeking the nomination to 19.

Firearms manufacturer Colt says it is suspending production of its popular AR-15 semi-automatic assault-style rifle for the civilian market, saying it will concentrate instead on fulfilling contracts from the military and law enforcement.

Updated at 3 p.m. ET

Millions of young people raised their voices at protests around the world Friday in a massive display meant to demand urgent action on climate change. Scores of students missed school to take part, some joined by teachers and parents.

Some of the first rallies began in Australia, and then spread from Pacific islands to India and Turkey and across Europe, as students kicked off what organizers were calling a Global Climate Strike.

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