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Bill prohibits state contracts with companies that discriminate against gun, ammo makers

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2017-11-11 ne-wanenmacherim (copy)

Pistols sit on a table at Wanenmacher’s Tulsa Arms Show in 2017.

OKLAHOMA CITY — The Oklahoma Senate on Wednesday advanced a measure that would bar state contracts with companies that discriminate against gun and ammunition manufacturers.

House Bill 3144 passed by a vote of 37-8 and returns to the House for consideration.

Sen. Casey Murdock, R-Felt, said the firearm industry is under attack. He is the Senate author of the measure.

Some banks have policies that say they will not loan money to gun and ammunition makers that sell high-capacity magazines or long rifles to those under 21, Murdock said.

“The bill states that if you have these policies, the state of Oklahoma will not do business with your company,” Murdock said.

Murdock said the state can have a policy that says it will not spend taxpayer dollars with companies that have policies that go against Second Amendment rights.

Sen. Mary Boren, D-Norman, said it was an attempt to micromanage global corporations all over the world based on particular cultural issue or values or concerns held in a state with a super Republican majority.

Senate Minority Leader Kay Floyd, D-Oklahoma City, said some of the companies Murdock referred to already have business relationships with state. She suggested the measure could result in the state being in breach of a contract.

Under questioning from Floyd, Murdock said he didn’t think the measure would impact companies the state is trying to lure.

Sen. Julia Kirt, D-Oklahoma City, said excluding some companies will increase costs for the state.

The bill would apply to political subdivisions, including cities and counties, Kirt said.

“The bill undermines the free market and excludes us from getting the capital we need, besides sending the wrong message to the rest of the country,” Kirt said.

Sen. Kevin Matthews, D-Tulsa, called it a “political stunt.”

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Republicans were reluctant to criticize Gov. Stitt directly, but Rep. Monroe Nichols, D-Tulsa, said: “I hope all Oklahomans are taking note of the fact that the Republican supermajorities in the House and Senate have sent a clear signal that Governor Stitt shouldn’t be responsible for Oklahoma tax dollars.”

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