While in Washington, D.C., Farm Director KC Sheperd sat down, caught up with Oklahoma Senator Markwayne Mullin, and talked about his fight for rural Oklahoma in Washington, D.C.
Mullin has been busy traveling across Oklahoma, listening to different issues, and visiting with Oklahomans from all parts of the state.
“I think it would be easier to say where I didn’t travel,” Mullin said.
Mullin noted having the chance to listen to the unique needs of different parts of the state.
“We are having major drought issues, obviously in western Oklahoma,” Mullin said. “Eastern side- we did have major drought issues, and now we are pretty wet.”
The military bases are a special component to Oklahoma, Mullin said, and the ag communities embrace those bases.
Many producers have different concerns when it comes to work being completed in the ag space, Mullin said, from crop insurance in the farm bill to foreign land ownership impacting agriculture in the state.
“The Chinese aren’t buying it,” Mullin said. “It is a third company that is buying it. It is an investor that is a billionaire or a millionaire in China, which is honestly- you are going to be connected to the government if you are wealthy in China. They are buying it through an LLC that they have set up in the United States that is invested into a hedge fund, and the hedge fund owns 150 different entities, and that hedge fund is buying the land. There is no way for the United States to actually pay attention to that because how many transactions happen each day just in Beaver County or in, Texas County or Oklahoma County? There is no way for us to be able to see that.”
Instead, Mullin said, the United States must pay attention to the land being bought in strategic areas, such as around air force bases.
Regarding inflation, Mullin said lowering energy costs will be the solution.
“If energy is high, that cost of the good goes up because energy is the backbone of the economy,” Mullin said. “Most people in Oklahoma realize that this administration isn’t going to actually pay attention to the oil and gas sector, which is the main driver of the price of energy. They are going down this ‘woke’ movement that is going to drive up energy costs.”
As rural healthcare is a big concern for many Oklahomans, Mullin said it is an issue that Bernie Sanders is the Chairman of the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pension.
“The irony of that is the Chairman of HELP, which is over Health, Education, Labor, and Pension, is Bernie Sanders- a true open socialist, who honestly shouldn’t even be in that seat because he is an independent,” Mullin said. “This is how left the Democrats have gone up here- they put (in charge) a socialist, a communist-leaning individual who openly says he believes that a communist-style government has some leaning tendencies that would be good for the United States.”
Because Bernie Sanders is not from rural America, Mullin said he does not understand that hospitals are the backbone of many of these communities.
“We are fighting every day,” Mullin said. “We are bringing our voice up here. The truth is that Oklahoma is fortunate because we have two rural representatives up here. We have Frank Lucas from the west side of the state and being in the Senate from the east side of the state, myself.”