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Tom Cole

Oklahoma's longest-serving Congressman led the state's delegation on the House floor in Washington Thursday to reflect on the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing as the 20th anniversary approaches.

U.S. Rep. Frank Lucas was a freshman lawmaker representing Oklahoma's now-defunct Sixth Congressional District that included downtown Oklahoma City.

U.S. Sen. James Lankford  says the budget proposal President Obama unveiled Monday doesn't address the drivers of the country's debt or encourage private sector growth.

Lankford said in a statement Monday the executive budget doesn't respect discretionary sequestration caps, and called the 7 percent increase in federal spending "reckless."

"That would be the equivalent to someone who's having a tough time making their credit car payments, but when they get a job, or when they get a raise, they say, 'Great. I got a raise. I'm going to buy a brand-new TV for the Super Bowl tonight, and put even more on my credit card,' instead of paying down debt," Lankford told Fox News' Shannon Bream during a wide-ranging interview that also focused on the U.S. response to self-proclaimed Islamic State militants. "If the economy’s doing better, terrific. Let’s start paying down debt. Let’s get us back into balance, not just accelerate and keep spending more.”

President Obama delivers his annual State of the Union address Tuesday night before a joint session of Congress.
The White House / Twitter

Most of Oklahoma’s Congressional delegation and executive leadership criticized President Obama’s annual State of the Union address Tuesday night – some even before the speech took place.

Gov. Mary Fallin says Obama can achieve his goal of improving the economic conditions of the middle class by relying on the energy sector to grow the economy and raise per-capita income.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And let's bring in another voice now. Tom Cole is a Republican congressman from Oklahoma. He's on the line with us. Congressman, thank you as always for coming on the program.

REPRESENTATIVE TOM COLE: Thank you.

U.S. Rep. Tom Cole (R-Okla.) is questioning President Obama's threat to veto the approval of the Keystone XL oil pipeline the Senate Energy and Natural Resource Committee will take up Thursday.

A street in Havana, Cuba in March 2014
Gareth Williams / Flickr

Two members of Oklahoma’s Congressional delegation have voiced their concerns after President Obama’s Wednesday announcement of steps to normalize relations between the United States and Cuba.

U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.) says he strongly opposes lifting the embargo against the Communist country. The state's senior Republican senator says he doesn't expect to see freedom of speech or free elections in Cuba, and said he would oppose any efforts to lift sanctions on the island nation if they come to the Senate floor.

A House vote is expected Thursday on a huge $1.1 trillion dollar spending bill that would fund every corner of the federal government.

Democrats have erupted over a provision that weakens the regulation of risky financial instruments and another that allows more money to flood into political parties. At the same time, conservatives are unhappy that the bill fails to challenge President Barack Obama's immigration policy.

“While I can point out a lot of things on this that I don’t particularly like, or that I know other members will have objections to, I usually ask them, ‘Well, what’s your alternative?’,” U.S. Rep. Tom Cole (R-Okla. 4) said Wednesday during a House Rules Committee hearing. “And it’s almost never realistic.”

Tom Cole
Republicanconference / Flickr

Republican U.S. Rep. Tom Cole is taking over as chairman of a powerful appropriations subcommittee in the U.S. House.

The seven-term congressman from Moore was named Thursday as chairman of the Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education.

The subcommittee has broad jurisdiction and oversees funding for several major agencies, including the Department of Education, Department of Health and Human Services and Department of Labor. This includes oversight of related agencies that deal with Medicaid, Medicare and Social Security.

OversightAndReform / Flickr Creative Commons

President Obama says he understands some Republicans disagree there’s a need to fix immigration laws, but U.S. Rep. and Senator-elect James Lankford (R-Okla. 5) says his party has offered to work with the president for nearly two years.

Oklahoma's U.S. House delegation.
U.S. Rep. James Lankford / Facebook

U.S. Rep. Jim Bridenstine was the only member of Oklahoma's U.S. House delegation to vote against President Obama's request to train and arm rebels fighting Islamic State militants in Syria.

Bridenstine says that if the Islamic State is deemed a threat, the United States should "eliminate it," not train and arm rebels.

Speaking from the State Floor in the White House on September 10, 2014, President Obama addressed the nation on the situation in Iraq and the United States’ strategy to degrade and defeat ISIL, a terrorist organization.
The White House / YouTube

U.S. Rep. Tom Cole (R-Okla. 4) says he would vote to give President Obama any authority and resources he needs to address the growing threat from the Islamic State.

“I have no doubt that such authorization would be overwhelmingly supported by both houses of Congress and on both sides of the aisle,” Cole said in a statement. “Americans, our friends and our enemies need to see the president and Congress united in their determination to destroy this very dangerous foe.”

President Obama and FEMA head Craig Fugate meet with Moore mayor Glenn Lewis, Gov. Mary Fallin, and U.S. Rep. Tom Cole (R-Okla. 4) after the May 20, 2013 tornado.
Pete Souza / The White House

All five members of Oklahoma's House delegation voted Wednesday to authorize a lawsuit against President Obama that would accuse him of violating the Constitution by exceeding his executive powers.

The suit will contend that Obama has exceeded his constitutional powers in the way he has enforced the 2010 health care law. The vote was 225 to 201.

Speaking during a House Rules Committee hearing Tuesday, U.S. Rep. Tom Cole (R-Okla. 4) said the president has shown a consistent pattern of unilaterally changing laws on his own - from the Affordable Care Act to environmental issues.

Congressman Tom Cole To Host Town Hall Meetings

Jul 28, 2014
U.S. House of Representatives

Congressman Tom Cole (OK-04) will host three town hall meetings across the Fourth District of Oklahoma in the month of August.

He invites constituents and members of the press to join him as he speaks in Frederick, Newcastle and Purcell, providing an update on the issues facing the district and answering questions from the audience.

Tuesday, August 5 at noon Banc First Conference Center 201 S. Main Street Frederick, OK 73542

Tuesday, August 26 at 5:30 p.m. Newcastle Community Center 705 NW 10th Street Newcastle, OK 73065

Tom Cole
Republicanconference / Flickr

The White House has called for an unimpeded international investigation into the Malaysian Airlines crash in Ukraine. 

U.S. Rep. Tom Cole (R-Okla. 4) says the suspected surface-to-air missile attack on the passenger plane shows that President Obama's announcement this week to impose more sanctions on Russia isn't enough to ease the conflict in Eastern Europe.

Tom Cole
Republicanconference / Flickr

U.S. Rep. Tom Cole says federal officials want to expand the use of military facilities like Fort Sill to house an increasing number of children from Central America who are caught trying to enter the country illegally.

The Republican from Moore said in a statement Friday that the Department of Health and Human Services wants to increase its capacity for the number of children being held at temporary shelters and extend the use of facilities until 2015.

Oklahoma's U.S. House delegation.
U.S. Rep. James Lankford / Facebook

Members of Oklahoma's Republican congressional delegation are praising the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in a case involving Oklahoma City-based Hobby Lobby.

U.S. Sens. Tom Coburn and Jim Inhofe issued statements Monday in support of the court's decision and praising the company's owners, the Green family. U.S. Reps. Jim Bridenstine, Tom Cole, and James Lankford also hailed the ruling as one in favor of religious liberty.

Oklahoma's U.S. House delegation.
U.S. Rep. James Lankford / Facebook

Three incumbent Oklahoma congressmen are working to avoid upsets in the June 24 primary as their challengers take hope following an upset in Virginia.

Republican Reps. Tom Cole, Frank Lucas and Markwayne Mullin each face challengers in the primary that comes two weeks after former House Majority Leader Eric Cantor lost in the Virginia primary to economics professor Dave Brat.

U.S. Rep. Tom Cole (R-Okla. 4) introduced an amendment to the fiscal year 2015 Defense Appropriations Act Thursday that would prohibit using military bases to house the recent wave of unaccompanied minors who have arrived in United States.

On Friday, Cole and several other House leaders sent a letter to President Obama opposing his handling of of the situation, and calling on him to deter a rising tide of undocumented immigrants coming over the border.

Cole's Fourth Congressional District includes Fort Sill, where nearly 600 children are being housed - mostly teenagers from Central America detained while trying to enter the United States illegally.

U.S. Department of Defense

The Department of Homeland Security expects as many as 60,000 unaccompanied child immigrants will illegally enter the United States in the coming year.

U.S. Rep. Tom Cole says he's disappointed Fort Sill will house about 600 of those unaccompanied minors. The six-term Republican's Fourth Congressional District includes the Lawton military installation.

Kate Carlton / The Oklahoma Tornado Project

Local and state officials gathered Tuesday morning in Moore to honor the 24 people killed and hundreds injured May 20, 2013 when a tornado struck the city.

Gov. Mary Fallin said thousands of Oklahomans went above and beyond the call of duty last year, but singled out educators from Briarwood and Plaza Towers Elementary Schools.

"Our teachers who used their own bodies as a shield, to help save children, to help protect children,” Fallin said. “Our teachers are our heroes."

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