- Associated Press - Monday, April 8, 2019

MOORE, Okla. (AP) - Oklahoma Republicans have elected a Tulsa County businessman to lead the state party and adopted a new platform that addresses teacher walkouts and abortion.

David McLain, 48, was chosen to be the GOP’s new state chairman at a convention in Moore on Saturday, The Oklahoman reported. The Republican party leads voter registration in Oklahoma, and controls every statewide office and the Legislature.

McLain of Skiatook owns a small construction company and has served as the GOP chairman in Tulsa County.

“I am truly a grassroots man,” McLain told nearly 1,000 delegates. “I have knocked on thousands of doors with you.”

McLain will replace Pam Pollard, who has been state chair since the party adopted its last platform in 2015.

The Oklahoma GOP’s new platform includes calls to penalize school districts for teacher walkouts by instituting “a funding cut equivalent to the daily payroll and expenses of the district.” The moves come a year after Oklahoma teachers walked out during their push for better school funding.

The platform details a number of anti-LGBTQ policies. It says public schools should not show homosexual or promiscuous behavior in a positive light. It opposes teaching students about any positive aspects of the LGBTQ lifestyle or history, and says schools should not provide education about gender nonconformity.

It also says that candidates who receive money or financial support from the Republican Party must support its definition of traditional marriage as a union between a man and a woman.

The platform calls for votes in both chambers on abolishing all abortions. The state Senate last month approved a bill that would let voters decide whether to amend the Oklahoma Constitution to clarify that it doesn’t protect the right of a woman to terminate a pregnancy.

It says congressional members should not be paid during a government shutdown, and opposes a nationalized health care system and the designation of public schools as gun free zones.

Any Republican running for office in Oklahoma should agree with at least 80% of the platform, said Carolyn McLarty, who led the platform writing committee.


Information from: The Oklahoman, http://www.newsok.com

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