Rep. James Lankford, Oklahoma Republican, said Tuesday morning that the state has actually had fewer tornadoes this spring than in recent years and that it had been a relatively quiet season up until the last few days.
"Sunday afternoon, we had tornadoes that went through my district, through Shawnee and Pottawatomie County, and I was out there Monday morning at dawn walking through debris fields I thought were just horrific, and they are horrific, but then you compare it to what's happening in Moore and it's just even more tragic that's there, so, very difficult days, obviously, for us as a state," Mr. Lankford said on MSNBC's "Morning Joe."
At least 51 people were killed, including 20 children, and the death toll was expected to rise, officials said Tuesday, The Associated Press reported.
"Oklahomans watch out for Oklahomans," Mr. Lankford said. "The difficulty here is it's typically your neighbor who helps you out in a tornado; tornadoes are typically much smaller, but now you're in a situation where the next-door neighbor's house is also gone."
He said churches, the University of Oklahoma, and neighbors were all participating in taking people in as they search for shelter.
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