United States Senator James Inhofe flew into the Miami Municipal Airport Tuesday afternoon, behind the controls of his vintage 1979 Cessna, to pay a visit to a local manufacturing firm.
The senator made his way to Quapaw to have a look at the Omni Corp plant. The manufacturer is a constructor of technologically advanced infrared nightvision devices as well as a host of GPS and satellite materials.
“Most of their work is with the military or NASA,” Inhofe said.
As the second-ranking member of the Armed Services Committee Inhofe is dedicated to seeing the company prosper in the Ottawa County area.
“I want to help them all I can,” Inhofe said.
The company is planning to open a second plant in the Quapaw area.
“When they get their new plant finished they’ll have over 265 good-paying jobs to offer,” Inhofe said. “The company has virtually no turnover and they train their own people.
“They are expanding and almost doubling in size. The jobs they provide are really good, high-tech jobs. They train people into them and the company is doing very well,” Inhofe said.
Inhofe’s duties with the Armed Services Committee have also led him to work toward keeping the GTMO facility open. The senator recently re-visited the facility located at Gauntanamo Bay, Cuba.
“I was there right after 9/11 in January of ’02. I was there two weeks ago,” Inhofe said.
“They’re down to 245 detainees. Of the 245 detainees we have left, 170 of those come from countries that won’t let them back in. So what are you going to do with them?”
To that end Inhofe has introduced legislation to prevent any GTMO detainee from being housed anywhere in the United States. Research from the senator’s office shows that the Pentagon spends $2.5 million each year on Korans, prayer rugs, and special foods for Muslim prisoners.
Inhofe’s visits to the sight and his findings have led him to oppose the closing of the GTMO facility and the senator maintains that the detention center meets the highest international standard for treatment of its detainees.
Inhofe also spoke of the recently passed $789 billion stimulus package passed by Congress.
“If you’re going to call it a stimulus bill why does it have all this welfare in it?” Inhofe asked.
“This is the largest spending bill in the history of the world,” he added.
The almost science fiction quantity of dollars involved in the bill was brought into focus by the senator with this bit of understanding:
“There are 140 million families who file tax returns in the US,” he said. “That’s $5,000 a family to pay for this stimulus.”
It is Inhofe’s view that infrastructure investment, along with defense spending and tax cuts, would have a greater influence on the economy than anything else the government might do.
The senator also takes issue with some of the details of the bill. According to Inhofe the bill allocates only one percent of its total sum for military spending, including veteran care.
Inhofe also takes exception to a provision in the bill that will create a National Coordinator for Health Information- a position that the senator says will cost $1 billion and create an office with too much power over individual health care decisions.
A detail in the package will also prohibit faith-based student groups at colleges and universities from receiving federal funding for building renovations or repairs, according to the senator’s research.
“I’m looking at this as a Republican who feels we have better answers than this for the problems in our country,” Inhofe said of the spending bill.
Inhofe continues his barn storming tour of his constituency today with visits to Fort Sill and Altus. The senator has been flying for 52 years and once flew a small Cessna around the world.
Inhofe plans to visit the Choctaw Manufacturing Development Group a company that builds trailers for the US Marines.