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Oklahoma U.S. Rep. Markwayne Mullin's early votes don't reflect his public call for bipartisanship

Despite his public plea for bipartisanship, U.S. Rep. Markwayne Mullin, a freshman Republican congressman from eastern Oklahoma, has mostly voted with his party on controversial bills and has even opposed legislation with strong bipartisan support.
by Chris Casteel Published: March 6, 2013

Those votes included a bill supported by most Republicans to stop a pay increase for federal employees; the Violence Against Women Act, opposed by the majority of Republicans; and a bill to provide $50 billion in federal aid for Hurricane Sandy recovery projects, opposed by the majority of Republicans.

The one vote in which Mullin sided with a majority of Democrats against a majority of Republicans was on a measure to temporarily raise the debt ceiling; he voted against it.

There have been bills passed overwhelmingly that Mullin supported, including two Tuesday: one to stop illegal trafficking of tobacco in some U.S. territories and another that would require the president to estimate each taxpayer's share of the deficit when submitting a budget.

Earlier this year, he supported a bill that had only two dissenting votes to condemn North Korea for a nuclear test and another to reauthorize graduate medical education programs in children's hospitals.

In his speech Monday, Mullin said he was “committed to working with any member regardless of party to roll up our sleeves and get to work.”

Tuesday, he said he was working with rank-and-file Democrats on issues regarding natural gas, transportation and state lakes.

“The (Democratic) members themselves — we get along,” Mullin said.

He said the two parties “have valid points” on immigration and should be able to reach an accord on a reform bill.

by Chris Casteel
Washington Bureau
Chris Casteel began working for The Oklahoman's Norman bureau in 1982 while a student at the University of Oklahoma. After covering the police beat, federal courts and the state Legislature in Oklahoma City, he moved to Washington in 1990, where...
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