Press Releases


Senator Lankford, Heitkamp: Social Security Administration Disability Backlog Proposal is a Problem

WASHINGTON, DC - The Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Subcommittee on Regulatory Affairs and Federal Management, under the chairmanship of Senator James Lankford (R-OK), today held a hearing on the massive social security disability backlog and what the Social Security Administration (SSA) is doing to address the problem. The number of Americans waiting for a hearing to determine their eligibility for disability benefits surpassed one million cases last year, and the average wait time … Continue Reading


Senator Lankford Urges Congress to Prioritize Funding to Address Zika

CLICK HERE to view the YouTube video WASHINGTON, DC- Senator James Lankford (R-OK) today delivered a speech on the Senate floor on the importance of a US response to the Zika virus and to urge Congress to prioritize spending with already-appropriated funding. Specifically, Lankford calls for the Senate to support a transfer of funds, rather than spending new money to proactively address the spread of the virus. On Tuesday, Lankford published an op-ed in The Hill concerning emergency funding a… Continue Reading


Senator Lankford Examines Massive Social Security Administration Disability Backlog

WASHINGTON, DC - Senator James Lankford (R-OK) today chaired a congressional hearing on the massive social security disability backlog and what the Social Security Administration (SSA) is doing to address the problem. According to the latest available data through March of this year, there are 13,169 pending social security disability cases in Oklahoma. By comparison, neighboring state, Kansas, has 9,219 pending cases, and Arkansas, has 8,873 pending cases. The average processing time for a hear… Continue Reading


Senator Lankford Supports Energy and Water Appropriations Bill, Which Includes a ‘Federal Fumble’ Proposal

WASHINGTON, DC - Senator James Lankford (R-OK) today supported the Energy and Water Development and Related Agencies Appropriations Act (H.R. 2028), which includes a proposal from his government waste report, "Federal Fumbles: 100 ways the government dropped the ball." Today's Energy and Water bill is the first of the 12 appropriations bills that Congress is expected to consider this year. "I'm glad the Senate has begun to finally pass appropriations bills in an open process," said Lankford. "T… Continue Reading


Senator Lankford in The Hill: Emergency spending not needed for international crises

by Senator James Lankford

What started as a peaceful Syrian uprising has grown into a global proxy war, with the United States, Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Turkey opposing the Assad regime, Iran and Russia trying to support it, and everyone randomly fighting the terrorist forces of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS). At the same time, world governments continue to scramble for resources to stem the flow of migrants and provide aid for the victims. For five years, Syria has gradually collapsed into chaos, with no fo… Continue Reading


Senator Lankford Calls on US Fish and Wildlife to Remove American Burying Beetle from the Endangered Species List

WASHINGTON, DC - Senator James Lankford (R-OK) today sent a letter to the Director of the US Fish and Wildlife Service, Daniel Ashe, to call on the agency to delist the American Burying Beetle under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). The beetle was first listed as an endangered species in 1989 when declining populations were only found in Rhode Island and Oklahoma. Today, the beetles' populations continue to grow in Oklahoma and Nebraska. The comment period for the petition to remove the Americ… Continue Reading


Lankford Letter - May 6

CLICK HERE for the May 6, 2016 Lankford Letter.… Continue Reading


Senator Lankford, Congressman Forbes Recognize National Day of Prayer with Special Prayer Caucus Video

WASHINGTON, DC - Congressional Prayer Caucus Co-Chairmen Senator James Lankford (R-OK) and Congressman Randy Forbes (VA-04) today released a special video to recognize the National Day of Prayer, celebrate the role of prayer in America, and share the story of the Congressional Prayer Caucus. CLICK HERE to watch the video. The National Day of Prayer is an annual observance held on the first Thursday of May, inviting people of all faiths to pray for the nation. It was created in 1952 by a join… Continue Reading


Senator Lankford: Oklahoma Needs More Foster Families

OKLAHOMA CITY, OK - Senator James Lankford (R-OK) today issued the following statement on National Foster Care Month (May) and the Oklahoma Fosters Initiative: "National Foster Care Month is a time to raise awareness and think about the plight of vulnerable children currently in America's foster care system. Children often come into care from very troubling situations; all of us are grateful for the many selfless foster parents, special advocates, mentors and social workers who patiently serve… Continue Reading


Senator Lankford, Congressman Forbes Lead Congressional Inquiry Regarding Missing Bibles at Veteran POW/MIA Memorials

WASHINGTON, DC -- Senator James Lankford (R-OK) and Rep. J. Randy Forbes (VA-04), Co-Chairmen of the Congressional Prayer Caucus, sent a letter Thursday to the Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs, seeking answers as to why Bibles have been removed from Missing Man Table displays at multiple Veterans Affairs (VA) clinics around the country, including in Youngstown and Akron, Ohio and Houston, Texas. "We have been informed that Bibles as part of Missing Man Table displays have been r… Continue Reading


Senator Lankford Calls For Action on Government Efficiency, Duplication and Transparency

CLICK HERE to view the YouTube video WASHINGTON, DC- Senator James Lankford (R-OK) today delivered a speech on the Senate floor about the government efficiency and duplication. The speech focused on his efforts to make government more transparent, reduce duplication and eliminate wasteful spending. Lankford applauded yesterday's Senate hearing on duplication and the recent release of the nonpartisan Government Accountability Office's (GAO) "Annual Report of the Additional Opportunities to R… Continue Reading


Senator Lankford Receives American Conservative Union Award

CLICK HERE to view the photo. WASHINGTON, DC - This week, Senator James Lankford (R-OK) has received the American Conservative Union "Award for Conservative Excellence" for his legislative record in 2015, receiving a score of 96 out of 100, which ties the second highest score in the U.S. Senate. "Senator James Lankford is a principled constitutional conservative who is deserving of this award," said American Conservative Union Chairman Matt Schlapp. "We are excited about new leaders like James… Continue Reading


Senators Inhofe, Lankford Statement on Meeting with Judge Garland

WASHINGTON, DC - Senators Jim Inhofe (R-OK) and James Lankford (R-OK) today met with Supreme Court nominee Judge Merrick Garland to extend their deep appreciation for his critical role following the 1995 investigation into the Oklahoma City Bombing. Following the Court's vacancy, both Senators firmly stated that they are not supporting a President Obama nomination to the Supreme Court during this presidential election year. "During our time with Judge Garland, we extended Oklahoma's gratitude … Continue Reading


Senator Lankford Continues to Press Government Duplication Issues

CLICK HERE to view the Q&A WASHINGTON, DC - Senator James Lankford (R-OK) today further examined the issues of program duplication during a Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee hearing on "Government Reform: Ending Duplication and Holding Washington Accountable." The hearing focused on the US Government Accountability Office's (GAO) "Annual Report of the Additional Opportunities to Reduce Fragmentation, Overlap and Duplication and Achieve Other Financial Benefits." Former US… Continue Reading


Senator Lankford Statement on US v. Sterling Oral Arguments

WASHINGTON, DC - Senator James Lankford (R-OK) issued the following statement today on the start of oral arguments on Wednesday in US v. Sterling case before the US Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces: "In 1993, Congress passed and President Clinton signed, the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA), providing broad protections for religious exercise. RFRA reinforces our first freedom found in the Constitution, the freedom of religion. Our service members defend freedom for us every day-the… Continue Reading


Sen. Lankford and Rep. Smith Demand Information From FDA About Loosening of Abortion Drug Rules

WASHINGTON, DC - Senator James Lankford (R-OK) and Representative Chris Smith (NJ-04) today led a bicameral letter to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to express concern and request information about the agency's recent decision to change policies regarding the abortion drug mifepristone. The letter was joined by 73 lawmakers. In the letter the lawmakers seek additional information in light of the controversial origins of the original approval of mifepristone in the United States. At t… Continue Reading


The Oklahoman Editorial Board: Federal officials disregard their land management failures

by The Oklahoman Editorial Board

In the private sector, if someone allows a home to become dilapidated because he lacks the funds to properly maintain it, no one argues the situation will improve if that person buys another home. Yet that's the model recently embraced by federal lawmakers. The federal government owns more than 600 million acres of land in the United States, which is roughly 30 percent of the entire country and as much as half of some Western states. That number is likely to increase, thanks in part to the fed… Continue Reading


Senator Lankford Demands Answers From Obama Administration on Latest Iran Nuclear Side Deal

WASHINGTON, DC - Senator James Lankford (R-OK) today issued the following statement on the news that the Obama administration is purchasing from Iran 32 tons of heavy water, material used to produce atomic-weapons, to help them reach their Nuclear Deal responsibility: "Today's announcement that the US will buy Iran's heavy water, a key component of nuclear-weapon development, continues to reinforce my suspicions about the President's Nuclear Deal. Each day brings a new American concession and a… Continue Reading


Senator Lankford Offers Amendment to Eliminate Wasteful Budget Gimmick in Appropriations Bill

WASHINGTON, DC - Senator James Lankford (R-OK) today offered an Appropriations amendment to eliminate a commonly-used budget gimmick with the Crime Victims Fund (CVF). Specifically, the amendment was offered during today's Appropriations Commerce, Justice, Science markup hearing to change the way that the Congressional Budget Office scores the CVF obligation limitations in future years, which would prevent a gimmick that allows for the same resources to be used as 'new' offsets for other program… Continue Reading


Senators Lankford, Heitkamp Introduce Bill to Update Cultural Educational Program for Native Students

WASHINGTON, DC - Senators James Lankford (R-OK) and Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND) today introduced bipartisan legislation to update decades-old data the federal government uses to distribute funds to benefit Native American students. The data currently excludes about 500,000 Native students from accessing federal resources they could be eligible for that would help address many of the students' unique academic and cultural needs. The bill is called the Johnson-O'Malley Supplemental Indian Education Prog… Continue Reading

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