Black caucus leaders pan Oklahoma governor’s race panel

June 8, 2020 GMT

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Leaders with Oklahoma’s Legislative Black Caucus criticized Gov. Kevin Stitt’s weekend roundtable on race for what they say was a lack of diversity on the panel.

State Reps. Regina Goodwin of Tulsa and Jason Lowe of Oklahoma City, both Democrats, said the roundtable discussion on Sunday should have included more diverse voices. Panelists included four men: two black community leaders, a black sheriff’s captain and a white police chief. It was moderated by Stitt and his wife, Sarah.

“The panel selection should have been more broad to offer more insight on these issues,” Goodwin said in a statement.


Lowe added: “Instead of a substantial meeting on inequity, we had a superficial show of solidarity.”

The two lawmakers said members of the black caucus have written several bills on the use of police force, hate crimes and body camera footage, all of which were never granted a hearing.

A spokesman for Stitt said the governor hoped to have Rose Washington, an executive with the Tulsa Economic Development Corporation, on the panel, but she had a scheduling conflict.

“He made it clear during the event that it was one step of many, not a comprehensive one-time discussion,” said Stitt spokesman Charlie Hannema.