D.C. DI­GEST

Tulsa World - - Datelines - Horn — Randy Kre­hbiel, Tulsa World

Pres­sure may be build­ing for Ok­la­homa's con­gres­sional del­e­ga­tion to re­solve the stand­off on bor­der wall fund­ing that has closed much of the fed­eral gov­ern­ment.

Last week, the state's four Repub­li­can House mem­bers voted, in essence, to con­tinue not pay­ing thou­sands of their con­stituents who are also fed­eral em­ploy­ees.

The del­e­ga­tion's lone Demo­crat, Ken­dra Horn of the 5th District, went against Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump and bor­der se­cu­rity.

That, in a nut­shell, is how op­po­nents will couch the five House mem­bers' votes on a series of Demo­crat bills to re­open gov­ern­ment with­out giv­ing Trump roughly $4 bil­lion more for the wall he wants to build on the bor­der with Mex­ico.

The Repub­li­cans all voted against the bills. Horn voted for them.

“I stand by Pres­i­dent Trump in the be­lief that the wall must be built ASAP,” new 1st District Con­gress­man Kevin Hern told con­stituents in a fundrais­ing email.

Sec­ond District Con­gress­man Mark­wayne Mullin, per­haps Trump's most vo­cal ally in the Ok­la­homa del­e­ga­tion, said he won't shave un­til the bor­der fund­ing is se­cured.

Horn, by con­trast, used her first floor speech to urge pas­sage of a bill that would re­open the Mon­roney FAA Cen­ter, which is in her district and one of the state's largest sin­gle-site em­ploy­ers.

Ap­pear­ing on MSNBC on Thurs­day morn­ing, the 4th District's Tom Cole struck a diplo­matic tone. He said declar­ing a na­tional emer­gency, as Trump has threat­ened, “is not the best use of pres­i­den­tial power, in my opin­ion,” and said the way to solve the stand­off is to ex­pand the scope of ne­go­ti­a­tions.

“Make it about mul­ti­ple is­sues,” he said. “Make it big enough so ev­ery­body can point to some­thing” as a vic­tory.

Cole, who like Horn rep­re­sents a rel­a­tively large num­ber of fed­eral em­ploy­ees, sug­gested of­fer­ing Democrats a deal on DACA — un­doc­u­mented res­i­dents brought to the coun­try years ago as chil­dren — in ex­change for a deal on bor­der se­cu­rity.

U.S. Sen. Jim In­hofe told The Hill that declar­ing an emer­gency might be the only way to re­solve the sit­u­a­tion but added, “I don't want that to hap­pen by the way.”

U.S. Sen. James Lank­ford, speak­ing on the Se­nate floor the same day, said re­open­ing the fed­eral gov­ern­ment with­out re­solv­ing the bor­der se­cu­rity is­sue means ad­di­tional bor­der se­cu­rity won't hap­pen.

But he also said the idea of a “wall” is not re­al­is­tic.

“Let's re­solve what all the Amer­i­can peo­ple know need to be re­solved — ba­sic, func­tional, real, com­mon­sense se­cu­rity,” he said. “Not putting up a big wall across the whole bor­der. No one wants to see a 2,000-mile-long wall. It's not even needed, but in ar­eas where there is a city on both sides of the bor­der, and lit­er­ally you cross the bor­der within sec­onds un­less there is a bar­rier there, it makes sense to have a bar­rier in those lo­ca­tions. It makes sense to put tech­nol­ogy in other ar­eas to be able to mon­i­tor folks that are il­le­gally cross­ing the bor­der in other ar­eas.”

U.S. Sen. Jim In­hofe ex­pressed con­fi­dence in the Trump ad­min­is­tra­tion af­ter a closed-door meet­ing with Pen­tagon of­fi­cials over the with­drawal of Amer­i­can forces from Syria.

“You guys al­ways jump on (Trump's) style,” In­hofe said, ac­cord­ing to De­fense News, “but (Trump) also re­al­izes he's not go­ing to do some­thing that we're not ready to do, that we're not equipped to do. I be­lieve that will hap­pen, and I got that as­sur­ance, in­clud­ing in this meet­ing.”

Trump sur­prised just about ev­ery­one Dec. 19 when he an­nounced in a tweet that the U.S. would be pulling out of Syria. He has since mod­i­fied that po­si­tion, and In­hofe said the Pen­tagon of­fi­cials con­vinced him Amer­ica's Is­raeli and Kur­dish al­lies “will be well taken care of in this.”

Oth­ers in the meet­ing, in­clud­ing Repub­li­cans Thom Til­lis of North Carolina and Kevin Cramer of North Dakota sounded more skep­ti­cal, the news site re­ported.

Syria: Dots and dashes:

In­hofe signed onto a “Con­sti­tu­tional carry rec­i­proc­ity” bill that would al­low con­cealed carry per­mits from one state to be rec­og­nized by other con­cealed carry states. Among the ob­jec­tions raised by op­po­nents is that the bill sets no min­i­mum stan­dards for such per­mits . ... Dar­rell “D.J.” Jor­dan, for­merly Lank­ford's com­mu­ni­ca­tions direc­tor, is a can­di­date for the Vir­ginia House of Del­e­gates.

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