By Russell Hixson
STILLWATER, Okla. —
U.S. Senator Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.) flew into Stillwater in his orange Harmon Rocket aircraft Saturday morning to talk about his efforts in Washington and cheer on the Oklahoma State University men’s basketball team as they played the University of Oklahoma.
Inhofe outlined several key issues he is pursuing in the nation’s capital.
According to Inhofe, the general consensus in Washington is that sequestration is going to happen on March 1, causing devastating cuts.
To help the nation’s military cope with the cuts, Inhofe has begun working on a bill that would allow the five military branches to decide where to make their cuts rather than having them slash spending indiscriminately.
Inhofe, a firm supporter of defense spending, scolded the Obama administration for reducing defense spending to 2 percent of gross domestic product when it should be at 4.5 percent. Inhofe said defense spending hasn’t been this low in 100 years.
Chuck Hagel nomination
As the ranking member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Inhofe is leading the opposition against the nomination of Chuck Hagel for Secretary of Defense. Inhofe disagrees with Hagel’s record on global nuclear disarmament, defense spending and America’s relations with Iran and Israel.
“The bottom line is that he has been very anti-Israel,” Inhofe said, referring to comments Hagel has made about Israel committing war crimes. Inhofe said he supports keeping current Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta.
“He has been very honest and tells the truth — that’s why they don’t want him,” Inhofe said.
The Oklahoma senator called Obama’s handling of the Sept. 11 attack on the American diplomatic mission in Libya a bigger coverup than Iran Contra, Watergate and the Pentagon Papers.
Inhofe said the Obama administration knew it was an organized terrorist attack the next day. Four Americans were killed in the attack.
“They sent Susan Rice out to lie to the American people,” Inhofe said, accusing the administration of being woefully unprepared for the attack and then misleading the American public.
Inhofe, who carries a .45 caliber Smith & Wesson handgun, called President Obama’s efforts to enact gun control following the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School “immoral.” The senator said the president is using children and a tragedy to promote his agenda.