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Oklahoma Republican Lawmakers Find Another Route For 'President Donald J. Trump Highway' Naming


Oklahoma Republican lawmakers have jump-started their efforts to rename a stretch of road in Cimarron County "President Donald J. Trump Highway."

An omnibus renaming measure, Senate Bill 624, stalled last month after Sen. Carri Hicks (D-Oklahoma City) asked Sen. Rob Standridge (R-Norman) whether his proposal complied with state law on highway dedications.

"Persons proposed to be so honored will have been deceased not less than three years prior to consideration, except for members of the United States Armed Forces, law enforcement or firefighters fallen in the performance of their duties. Are all of the individuals that are being considered today for these designation purposes within those guidelines?" Hicks said.

"We’ve made exceptions throughout the time I’ve been here," Standridge said.

Standridge has been a senator since 2012. Senate Minority Leader Kay Floyd, who has been a lawmaker since 2012, said she could not recall any such exceptions.

A motion to suspend Senate rules and vote on SB624 anyway fell short of a required two-thirds majority.

To bring SB624 back, its authors have changed it so it would strike the requirement most honorees be dead three years.

"Can you tell me why we took out the three — whether it was you or whoever did it — took out the three-year death requirement before there’s naming of new roads?" Rep. Denise Crosswhite Hader (R-Piedmont) asked the House author, Rep. Avery Frix (R-Muskogee) during a conference committee hearing last week.

"That was a request from Sen. Standridge, reason being is that in that omnibus bill, we had a naming for Sen. Inhofe and former President Trump — who have not, obviously, deceased. And so, the Senate felt like there was some conflicting language in that bill. And so, that’s why that was taken out," Frix said.

SB624 also names a "U.S. Senator James Inhofe Interchange" on I-40 in Midwest City.

Matt Trotter joined KWGS as a reporter in 2013. Before coming to Public Radio Tulsa, he was the investigative producer at KJRH. His freelance work has appeared in the Los Angeles Times and on MSNBC and CNN.
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