“For two years now, we’ve had a proposal for how you fund Medicaid expansion that did not include tax increases, did not include cuts to education, all of those things that we are now being told will have to happen. So I’m still very hopeful that we can go back to the funding plan that we’ve had all along, and that could be the cornerstone to how we do this without damaging the rest of the state’s budget or increasing taxes.”

-Sen. Greg McCortney, R-Ada [The Oklahoman]

“(It) really made me feel for folks who are in a difficult financial situation.”

-Kevin Penry, a Republican and retired pastor from Edmond, who voted for SQ 802 citing a recent experience having to purchase expensive health insurance on the federal marketplace. [AP News]

“When you look at the hospitals throughout rural Oklahoma, they’re the lifeblood of many of these communities. And if these hospitals go away, there is no emergency room to go get a COVID test. There is no place if you’re having a heart attack to go have someone save your life. There is no place to go if you have a stroke.”

-Shawn Terry, Muscogee (Creek) Secretary of Health [NonDoc]

“Too many people are still taking an ‘it’s not my problem’ approach to the virus.”

-Dr. George Monks, president of the Oklahoma State Medical Association [Tulsa World]

“It’s been very frustrating. You call somebody, they tell you that they gotta send it to another department, and then that department, they never call you back. Their little game to me is, ‘I’ll call you back.’ They never do. Never.”

-Calvin Homer, who went to the Oklahoma Employment Security Commission’s main offices at 4:30 a.m. Wednesday to see if he could get a place in line to be seen that day, but more than 100 people had already gathered. So he headed over to the Career Connection Center and at 5:05 a.m. secured his place as fifth person in line. [The Oklahoman

“We are now in a zone where we need to pay very close attention each day to what is happening with hospitalizations.”

-OKC Mayor David Holt about rising number of virus cases and hospitalizations in Oklahoma City [The Oklahoman]

“In digging into the numbers, we can see that Oklahoma is making some progress (in child well-being), but we lag other states who have made — or are making — meaningful investments in health and education. As a result, we see far too many of our children who are living in poverty, unhealthy, and lack the educational opportunities as children in other parts of the country.”

-Rebecca Fine, OK Policy’s Education Policy Analyst and KIDS COUNT Coordinator [OK Policy]

“You can’t fix what you haven’t faced.”

-Tulsa author and attorney Hannibal B. Johnson, paraphrasing writer and activist James Baldwin, about the path to racial reconciliation [New York Times]

“As a physician, my oath is to do no harm, and to sit silently on this matter feels wrong. I was raised in a conservative, pro-life, Southern Baptist household and continue to have these values today with my own family. It’s not about President Trump. For me, it doesn’t matter if the rally is for a Republican, Democrat or Queen Elizabeth herself. It’s a terrible idea.”

-Dr. Samantha Whiteside, a Tulsa emergency physician [Op-Ed / Tulsa World]

“We have a foundational system in this country that has dehumanized black and brown people. We have given our communities one option that doesn’t actually produce any real results or any real accountability. The people calling for defunding and investment in restorative justice and community-based services are asking for accountability. So again, I’m not going to be able to vote for this because, fundamentally, we are continuing to give people the same tool somehow thinking it will fix all of our social ills.”

-OKC Ward 6 Councilor JoBeth Hamon discussing her vote against the city’s FY21 budget, saying communities needed more options for public safety [NonDoc]