Photo Gallery

Last week, I connected with AP Government students at Hobart High School to answer some of their question about my work while in DC. I appreciate everyone from Hobart High who made sure we got connected and the great questions from their students.










This week, I enjoyed the chance to answer question from students from Mrs. Cruse’s AP Government class at Woodward High School. It is a pleasure to pause for a few minutes at my desk in DC to talk with students back home.










It’s always nice to welcome Oklahomans to my office in Washington, DC, for some coffee at Java with James every Wednesday morning the Senate is in session at 9am. Come by if you’re in DC.










While in Tulsa a few weeks ago, I dropped in on the students at ORU. They asked really insightful questions about the direction of our nation, the tone of our national discourse, and the ways they could be more involved. I am grateful for the university students from all over the world who are thinking through policy and living their faith.










Welcomed members of the Midwest City Chamber to DC to talk through some of the issues facing the community and Tinker Air Force Base.









The Oklahoma State Chamber of Commerce comes every year to Washington, DC, to share their perspectives on issues facing our nation from Oklahoma businesses and business owners. I appreciate their dedication to be an advocate on behalf of the thousands of businesses and
employees in our state.












I was honored to receive the game ball form this year’s Turnpike Bowl between OSU and Tulsa. I really appreciate President Dr. Gerard Clancy and the entire TU
family for their hospitality. It was a packed stadium and a great game.

Dear Oklahoma friends and neighbors: 

Obviously it has been a busy and noisy week in Washington, DC. As you are no doubt aware, this week the House began its inquiry into impeaching President Donald Trump. Since January of this year, more than 100 House members have actively sought to open impeachment proceedings against the President. This week, the day before any documents were released to Congress or the American people, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced a formal impeachment inquiry process would begin immediately. Now, more than 200 House members are pushing toward impeachment.

The root of the Democratic accusation that started last week is that they believe President Trump tried to get campaign assistance from a foreign government and that the President implied that he would not help Ukraine economically or with military assistance unless Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky agreed to help him get information about former Vice President Joe Biden’s son, Hunter, and his business dealings in Ukraine. The accusation is that VP Biden pressured the former government of Ukraine to fire the investigator who was looking into his son’s company. To clarify, these remain only accusations; nothing is confirmed on VP Biden or President Trump. Currently, there are news stories and the accusation of a whistleblower who was not there either. 

The White House released on Wednesday the details of President Trump’s phone call with Ukrainian President Zelensky. I encourage everyone to read the five pages for yourself and make up your own mind.

CLICK HERE to read the transcript released by President Trump of his call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. I have read the transcript.

CLICK HERE to read the full whistleblower report. I have read the report as well.

Many people are surprised to read in the call transcript that President Trump did not bring up the topic of Rudy Giuliani’s investigation of Hunter Biden. President Zelensky brought it up first to President Trump, then President Trump responded. Americans may also be surprised to learn that the investigation around Hunter Biden and Rudy Giuliani has been in the news for months in Ukraine.

Our nation has only dealt with the chaos of an impeachment inquiry three times in our long history. Clearly, this will be a huge distraction to the work that needs to be done. We have appropriations, international trade deals, prescription drug pricing, immigration, and much more that needs to be completed. In fact, the very important revised trade deal with Mexico and Canada has been in the US House of Representatives for almost a year awaiting a vote. Mexico and Canada have already ratified the deal; we just need to approve it here to dramatically increase the stability of our trade in North America.

UPDATE: Funding the Government

In other news, we continue to work through the necessary appropriations bills. So far, the Senate Appropriations Committee has passed 10 of the 12 funding bills. To give Congress more time to negotiate and to avoid a government shutdown, the House and Senate both voted for a temporary continuing resolution (CR) until November 21, 2019. Another year, another delay. I continue to press my solutions that actually get the work of funding the government done and avoid the need for CRs that just continue last year’s funding and do not efficiently spend Americans' tax dollars.

I introduced a bipartisan solution (with Senator Maggie Hassan of New Hampshire) to end federal shutdowns. It continues to gain support from Members on both sides of the aisle. The Prevent Government Shutdowns Act would protect federal workers and their families from the chaos of a shutdown by maintaining current funding levels and keeping Members of Congress in Washington until the work of funding the government is done. It is a simple solution to end a decades long problem. Our nation has endured 21 government shutdowns in the last 40 years. It is time for them to end.

CLICK HERE for more information on our Prevent Government Shutdowns Act.

CLICK HERE to watch my floor speech this week on the Prevent Government Shutdowns Act.

Attack on Saudi Arabian Oil Facilities

I continue to monitor in classified settings the recent drone attack on Saudi Arabian oil facilities. We have clear information that the cruise missiles and armed drones were Iranian made and they were launched from Iran. This is a serious escalation of belligerent activities by the Iranian regime. Iran is the largest state sponsor of terrorism in the world. They fund Hamas, Hezbollah, the brutal regime in Syria, and the civil war in Yemen. Iran has attacked oil tankers, created explosives to kill Americans in Iraq and taken sailors hostage in the Gulf. It is clear why the world cannot allow Iran to have a nuclear weapon. 

Congress and the President do not want to go to war with Iran. Our nation does not have a problem with most of the millions of peaceful people in Iran. But, the world has a problem with the Iranian regime. The goal of sanctions and international cooperation is to isolate Iranian leaders to encourage them to live in peace with their neighbors. It is interesting to note that there was only a modest increase in worldwide oil prices after the Saudi attack. That is clear evidence how much the international energy market has changed since the US increased our energy production and started exporting American oil and gas. Many people remember the dramatic spike in energy prices in decades past when there was any conflict in the Middle East. American innovation and American energy independence have changed that volatility for American consumers and the rest of the world.

CLICK HERE to watch a recent interview with Martha MacCallum where we talked about some of the issues surrounding the attack on Saudi oil facilities and what it means for American foreign policy in the region.

UPDATE: Prescription Drugs

The Senate Finance Committee, on which I serve, continues to work on bipartisan solutions to actually solve some of the issues contributing to rising prescription drug prices. I remain in discussions with Finance Committee members and other senators to bring legislation to combat some of the issues surrounding prescription drug price increases including, drug “tiering” that limits generic drugs, the “donut hole” that drives up costs for seniors, drug company mergers that limit options, and other anti-competitive behavior in our pharmaceutical, insurance, and healthcare markets.

CLICK HERE to listen to the most recent episode of my podcast to learn more about my work to actually solve some of the issues affecting increasing prescription drug prices. 

CLICK HERE to read my op-ed in Modern HealthCare to learn more about some of the basic terminology and stakeholders in the prescription drug industry and how we are working in a bipartisan manner to address high prices and anti-competitiveness.

Keeping You in the Loop

  • Yesterday, I was disappointed to see that the Administration once again decided to decrease the number of refugees we allow into our country. Over the last few months, the Department of Homeland Security implemented multiple policies that have resulted in a decrease in migrants at our Southern Border. While I appreciate the Administration’s focus on curbing illegal immigration and caring for asylum seekers, that does not mean we should continue to reduce the admittance of refugees who are fleeing persecution in their home countries to support these policies. The Administration should consult Congress and finalize an FY20 cap consistent with our nation’s values and foreign policy goals. CLICK HERE to read the letter Delaware Senator Chris Coons and I sent in August to the Administration to express concern about reports of a proposed elimination of refugee resettlements for FY20. CLICK HERE for more information. 
  • This week, the Senate confirmed Mr. Eugene Scalia as Secretary of Labor and General John E. Hyten to be Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. The Senate continues to work to fill numerous Judicial and Executive Branch vacancies through the advice-and-consent process. I take this role very seriously and will continue to thoroughly review each nominee. So far, the Senate has approved 152 new federal judges.
  • On September 22, President Trump addressed the UN General Assembly. Among several topics, he discussed the importance of and America’s dedication to international religious freedom and our nation’s work to protect the rights of religious minorities around the world from persecution. We can and should share our values of religious liberty with other nations and ensure that others have the opportunities to live by their faiths or have no faith at all around the world. We can help the world have fewer conflicts if we can help other nations understand the importance of religious liberty.
  • This week, the Senate confirmed Oklahoman Kerry Pettingill to serve as the United States Marshal for the Eastern District of Oklahoma. Thank you, Kerry, for your willingness to serve! CLICK HERE to read more.
  • On Wednesday, I introduced Mrs. Jodi Dishman at her confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee. Mrs. Dishman was nominated by President Trump on August 14, 2019, to serve as a Judge on the US District Court for the Western District of Oklahoma. She currently serves as an attorney at McAfee & Taft law firm in Oklahoma City and is President of the Oklahoma City chapter of the Federal Bar Association. She previously clerked for two judges on the US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. I look forward to the Judiciary Committee’s consideration of her nomination and consideration by the full Senate. CLICK HERE to watch my introduction.
  • This week, President Trump and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe negotiated a new trade deal to increase US agriculture exports, lower some industrial tariffs, and set rules for digital trade items. Our nation should continue to strive toward a broader trade agreement with Japan to cover areas including financial and telecommunications services, intellectual property concerns, and government procurement policies and regulatory practices. CLICK HERE for more information on the negotiations.
  • On September 12, I joined a bipartisan effort to review how the VA manages its contracts. I partnered with Senators Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona and Jon Tester of Montana on a letter to the top federal government watchdog, the Government Accountability Office (GAO), after the VA’s acquisition management was added to the GAO’s list of government programs at risk for waste and fraud. The VA acquires numerous goods and services for our veterans and their families. We should pay attention to the contracting costs and quality to ensure we protect taxpayer dollars. CLICK HERE to read a copy of the letter we sent to the GAO Comptroller General.
  • September is National Passport Month! Often people apply for their passports too late. Why wait? Submit an application in the lower-demand fall and winter months for faster service—even if you don’t have a trip planned yet. CLICK HERE to submit your application. If you ever have questions about international travel and how my office can serve you while abroad, please contact my Oklahoma City office at (405) 231-4941.
  • Previously, the Lankford Letter has provided information on how to spot and report scams claiming to be from the Social Security Administration. I would also like to provide information on similar scam attempts from other federal agency impersonators and how to report them. If you ever wonder whether correspondence or a phone call claiming to be from the federal government is real, you can always call any of my three offices, and we can look into the call for you and make sure it is from a legitimate source.
    • CLICK HERE for more information from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) on fraudsters claiming to be from the IRS, and CLICK HERE to report a scam attempt to the IRS.
    • CLICK HERE for information from the Department of State on international financial or “romance” scams and how to protect yourself and your family.
    • Additionally, senior adults who are the victims of scams should report to the US Senate’s Committee on Aging fraud hotline by calling (855) 303-9470.
  • The Supreme Court of the United States will begin its next term on October 7. The Court will hear a number of important cases on topics including Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and the scope of the Civil Rights Act. The Court’s decisions in these and numerous other cases could have a profound impact on our nation.
  • Earlier this month, I spoke on the Senate floor in honor of Constitution Day. We should always remember that our most enduring and unique national document has stood the test of time and directed our nation’s governance for over two hundred years. Please take the time to read our nation’s founding documents. We continue to grow as a nation, but it is hard to know where you’re going if you don’t know where you’ve been and who we are as a nation. CLICK HERE to watch my brief remarks on the Senate floor.

In God We Trust,
James Lankford
United States Senator for Oklahoma

Stay Connected! 

If you would like more information on these topics or any other legislation currently before the US Senate, please do not hesitate to call my DC office at (202) 224-5754. My Oklahoma City office can be reached at (405) 231-4941 and my Tulsa office at (918) 581-7651. You can also follow me on Facebook or Twitter or Instagram for updates on my work in Congress.
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