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AM NewsBrief: Oct. 20, 2022

This is the KGOU AM NewsBrief for Thursday, Oct. 20, 2022.

Gubernatorial debate

Incumbent Republican Governor Kevin Stitt touted his conservative credentials while Democrat challenger Joy Hofmeister continued with her moderate tone at the Will Rogers Theater in Oklahoma City.

“Folks, Oklahoma’s turnaround, it is working,” Stitt said. “We simply can’t go backwards. We know what will happen if we put Biden’s party back in charge.”

Stitt often invoked President Joe Biden and the Democratic Party throughout the night. Hofmeister touted herself as an independent thinker who joined the Democrats after her party was “hijacked,” by the governor.

“He reads off a national script and is out of touch with Oklahomans and the actual needs and solutions that are right here,” she said of Stitt.

The debate was sponsored by the Oklahoma State Chamber of Commerce and moderated by Tres Savage, editor of the nonprofit news outlet Nondoc and News 9 reporter Storme Jones.

The moderators asked questions related to education, healthcare access and tribal sovereignty, as well as about decisions Stitt and Hofmeister had made in office.

Missing health funds interim study

Oklahomans for Criminal Justice Reform will participate in an interim study concerning the Legislature’s failure to account for funds saved from reclassifying simple drug possession and some minor property crimes from felonies to misdemeanors.

The nonprofit says the funds, which were meant to be used for substance abuse counseling and other mental health services across the state, add up to over $70 million.

The study was requested by Republican Representative Justin Humphrey. The first session will be held on Monday, October 24th and the second will be held on October 26th.

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