Editors Note: The follow is by Oklahoma state Representative Jason Murphy and was originally published on his blog. It is reprinted here with permission.

Last week I wrote of the shared feeling of helplessness which many feel regarding their inability to have their voice heard in the large, ever-more intrusive federal government.

There is certainly a role which can be played by state lawmakers to at the very least slow the expansion of the federal government and its programs.

I wrote about one such example back in 2013.

I that article I described my dislike for the crisis policy making which occurs when politicians attempt to avert a purported crisis by approving a far-reaching new law or new big government program.

It takes a courageous policy maker to refuse to go along with crisis policy making and the method by which federal expansion takes place: in a “crises.”

Many politicians fear taking blame for the armageddon-like crisis which purportedly waits ominously just around the corner if the state doesn’t act according to federal wishes.

Good policy is not created quickly or in a crisis. It is horrifying to realize that a new big government program that will last for many years was developed by policy makers in just a few days, under the gun of federal pressure and possibly with just a few days left in the legislative session.

Unfortunately I have become accustomed to seeing legislative leadership become suckered into signing off on costly federal expansion, some which which haunts the state budget to this day, but in May of 2013 I witnessed something completely different.

As the legislative session came to a close, a proposal emerged to create a new state government health insurance program. The federal government had just rejected Oklahoma’s already existing Insure Oklahoma program. The federal government clearly sought to transition this type of program under the auspices of the federal government’s national health care program.

This rejection set off a mad scramble to create a new state program to make up for the loss of Insure Oklahoma — and past Oklahoma leaders would have quickly advanced this new program. Not so, in 2013!

Then Speaker of the House T.W. Shannon calmly rejected the creation of a new program in a crisis. He wasn’t quick to react just because the federal government tried to force our hand.

The Representatives who refused to take action came under heavy criticism from those who wanted the new government program and who pointed to the armageddon-like scenario of thousands losing their health insurance. It would have been easy to give in to the criticism and create the new government program without thoughtful consideration or deliberation. Many politicians would have believed this prediction and feared taking the blame, but Shannon never backed down.

By refusing to legislate in a crisis, Shannon forced the federal government’s hand. The federal government blinked and Oklahoma taxpayers won. The creation of a new big government program was averted.

As I referenced last week, I constantly receive input from those who are depressed and fearful of all of the change, the expansion of big government, the associated unaffordable financial cost, and the unmistakable loss of liberty.

Don’t ever believe that the fight against ever expanding government is hopeless. Please know there is hope and courageous policy makers who are determined to stop the expansion of big government.

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