Tension, distrust in Oklahoma’s congressional delegation stem from spending bill vote
By Chris Casteel
WASHINGTON — Tension between Rep. Jim Bridenstine and the rest of the Oklahoma congressional delegation has morphed into deep suspicion that the Tulsa Republican recruited GOP primary candidates to run against his own colleagues.
Meanwhile, Bridenstine and his backers think a wealthy Tulsan jumped into the race against him to drain his money and hurt his political future.
Top Republican Party officials in Oklahoma have intervened to clear the air over the primaries and a separate effort by some Republicans to criticize the members of the delegation who voted for a massive spending bill in December.
That bill, known as the omnibus, is the source of much of the recent conflict.
Six members of the delegation voted for the $1 trillion measure, which funded most government agencies and lifted a decades-old ban on exporting U.S. crude.