U.S. Rep. Stephanie Bice draws conservative primary opponent as she seeks reelection in Oklahoma’s Fifth Congressional District
U.S. Representative Stephanie Bice told The Oklahoma City Sentinel in a recent interview, “I am seeking re-election to continue the work I’ve been doing over the last year and a half as a member of Congress; to fight the Biden Administration’s repeated gross overreach, to protect Oklahoma’s oil and gas industry, to put a stop to the Democrats far-left socialist agenda that threatens to fundamentally change this great nation.” Asked to name three most important issues facing citizens, voter and taxpayers in Oklahoma and around the nation, Bice commented: “First and foremost, protecting Oklahoma’s oil and gas industry is paramount. Revenues from this industry equal approximately 25% of our state’s total collections, but Democrats have launched a full-scale assault on the industry resulting in the highest gas prices in history. “We must also secure our southern border. Almost 2 million illegals crossed in 2021, and that number is expected to rise significantly with the termination of title 42. Not only are we seeing human trafficking at the border, but drug overdoses were the number one killer of adults 18-35 last year, primarily due to the incredible amount of fentanyl crossing into the US from Mexico. “Third, Oklahomans are hurting due to increased inflation brought on by the reckless spending of the Biden administration. The price of gasoline, groceries, and electricity are up significantly, hurting all Oklahomans, but putting additional burdens on those living on a fixed or low incomes. In an exchange about her life experiences and education she believes qualify her to stay on the job – including her two years in Congress and previous state legislative service – Bice reflected: “My life experience as a mother and small business owner gave me great perspective on issues important to Oklahoma families. Those experiences have served me well during my time in the Oklahoma State Senate and now as a member of Congress. I understand the challenges small businesses face and have worked tirelessly to reduce bureaucratic red tape so business can do what they do best -- employ Oklahomans and grow our economy.” She continued, specifically looking back on her two years serving at the U.S. Capitol: “In this, my first term in Congress, I’ve been focused on addressing our country’s challenges head on. I visited Del Rio, Texas to see the border crisis firsthand. There the record-breaking surge of migrants has overwhelmed DHS and Border Patrol officers working to secure our border and keep out the illegal drugs like fentanyl wreaking havoc on our communities. These are some of the reason’s I opposed ending the ‘remain in Mexico’ policy and the withdrawal of Title 42 by the Biden administration. “Joining with other conservatives, I successfully fought the creation of the Biden administration’s Disinformation Governance Board, a frightening Orwellian concept. To reduce the cost of energy, I opposed Biden’s plan to put controls on fuels, which could lead to fuel shortages and increase dependence on foreign energy. I also opposed Biden’s transparently political and ineffective release of oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, which had no positive impact on the cost of gasoline. “I’ve worked with my colleagues to demand more oversight and accountability at the Food and Drug Administration. And for our veterans, I’ve worked to expand employment opportunities for departing servicemembers to transition into civilian national security contractor positions by making it easier for them to transfer their Department of Defense security clearances. “And, because the IRS continues to be far too difficult for most taxpayers to manage, I’ve written legislation requiring the IRS to eliminate its backlog by December 31, 2023, and improve the processing times of tax returns. “On these critical issues, and others, I will continue to fight for my constituents and all Oklahomans, and I sincerely ask for continued support.” Rep. Bice was elected to Congress in 2000, defeating incumbent Kendra Horn, a Democrat who won the seat by defeating incumbent U.S. Rep. Steve Russell. District lines in that election stretched east from Oklahoma City into neighboring counties. In redistricting required under the U.S. Constitution, those counties were removed, the district re-crafted to move north and northwest from the core of Oklahoma City/County. Analysts, including this reporter, believe that makes the district more inclined to support a Republican candidate. In the June 28 GOP primary, Rep. Bice will face challenger Subrina Banks, featured in a recent story ( https://www.city-sentinel.com/government/subrina-banks-seeks-to-wrest-the-republican-party-nomination-from-u-s-representative-stephanie-bice/article_8ed25476-d245-11ec-b617-53d40da79d5b.html ) The winner of the June 28 primary election will find Democratic nominee Joshua Harris-Till and Independent David K. Forsch will be waiting on the November general election ballot.