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Inhofe, Lankford oppose funding bill for testing, relief programs and paid leave

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Oklahoma’s senators on Wednesday cast two of only eight votes against a bill to add emergency relief money to Medicaid, food stamps, unemployment and other programs. The bill would also ensure free testing for the coronavirus.

The bill was approved 90-8 and was signed Wednesday night by President Donald Trump.

Oklahoma Sens. Jim Inhofe and James Lankford said the provisions requiring businesses to grant sick and family leave to employees could make a bad situation worse for employers struggling through economic uncertainty.

The measure, called the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, was approved by the House early Saturday, with support from Reps. Tom Cole, R-Moore; Kendra Horn, D-Oklahoma City; and Frank Lucas, R-Cheyenne. Republican Rep. Kevin Hern, of Tulsa, voted against it.

Horn said the bill “would deliver emergency paid leave to as many as 87 million U.S. workers in the face of a growing public health emergency."

Lankford said, “I just voted against the second COVID-19 funding bill in the Senate. I supported the $8.3 billion health care bill three weeks ago, but this bill has a new government mandate on small businesses, which was intended to help, but I fear it will make a bad situation worse for many Oklahoma businesses.

“We have an opportunity to fix this issue in a third bill that the Senate is currently working on, and the American people are counting on us to get it right.”

Inhofe said, “The House-passed bill imposed a mandate on small businesses to front employee pay for sick and family leave, making them wait for weeks or months to be reimbursed by the federal government.

“As a former small business owner, I know how tight margins are. These small businesses do not have weeks or months to survive – they’re barely hanging on right now. The House proposal, while having good intentions, could actually make economic conditions for small businesses even worse than they already are, forcing them to close or lay off their workers.”

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<figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-39d266316572811f2a959ddc13389cb6.jpg" alt="Photo - Inhofe " title=" Inhofe "><figcaption> Inhofe </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-c097104d58a969969194d459b141e4e5.jpg" alt="Photo - Lankford " title=" Lankford "><figcaption> Lankford </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-76380940218705bdcf460341c22f7091.jpg" alt="Photo - A shopper covers her face as she returns a shopping cart at Costco in Oklahoma City, Tuesday, March 17, 2020. [Bryan Terry/The Oklahoman] " title="A shopper covers her face as she returns a shopping cart at Costco in Oklahoma City, Tuesday, March 17, 2020. [Bryan Terry/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>A shopper covers her face as she returns a shopping cart at Costco in Oklahoma City, Tuesday, March 17, 2020. [Bryan Terry/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-8d42332d428256b95d487de2957fbad5.jpg" alt="Photo - The exterior of a Dollar General as customer walks into the store in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Tuesday, March 17, 2020. [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] " title="The exterior of a Dollar General as customer walks into the store in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Tuesday, March 17, 2020. [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>The exterior of a Dollar General as customer walks into the store in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Tuesday, March 17, 2020. [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-826d355fc7b990fba355e8fcf9370c11.jpg" alt="Photo - Signs are pictured on the doors of the Mitch Park YMCA in Edmond, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] " title="Signs are pictured on the doors of the Mitch Park YMCA in Edmond, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>Signs are pictured on the doors of the Mitch Park YMCA in Edmond, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-d7b093c7ac4cc7214126d779d55db00f.jpg" alt="Photo - Exterior of a Homeland grocery store as customers make their way to shop in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Tuesday, March 17, 2020. [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] " title="Exterior of a Homeland grocery store as customers make their way to shop in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Tuesday, March 17, 2020. [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>Exterior of a Homeland grocery store as customers make their way to shop in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Tuesday, March 17, 2020. [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-eafc8b2583a8533b774f8b55b4aab16a.jpg" alt="Photo - Empty playground equipment is pictured at Hafer Park is pictured in Edmond, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] " title="Empty playground equipment is pictured at Hafer Park is pictured in Edmond, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>Empty playground equipment is pictured at Hafer Park is pictured in Edmond, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-166b547eee7d6e841c0b666a72694264.jpg" alt="Photo - Pizzeria Gusto's 'to go only' sign outside the restaurant in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Tuesday, March 17, 2020. Many restaurants have gone to pick up or carry out only in effort to prevent the spread of the coronavirus [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] " title="Pizzeria Gusto's 'to go only' sign outside the restaurant in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Tuesday, March 17, 2020. Many restaurants have gone to pick up or carry out only in effort to prevent the spread of the coronavirus [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>Pizzeria Gusto's 'to go only' sign outside the restaurant in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Tuesday, March 17, 2020. Many restaurants have gone to pick up or carry out only in effort to prevent the spread of the coronavirus [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-e9526911897e680c68cc82bfb34dd609.jpg" alt="Photo - People drink inside O'Connell's Irish Pub and Grille on St. Patricks Day in Norman, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. O'Connell's was following the restrictions at the time to have no more than 50 people gathered together and limited the number of customers allowed in at once. [Nate Billings/The Oklahoman]" title="People drink inside O'Connell's Irish Pub and Grille on St. Patricks Day in Norman, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. O'Connell's was following the restrictions at the time to have no more than 50 people gathered together and limited the number of customers allowed in at once. [Nate Billings/The Oklahoman]"><figcaption>People drink inside O'Connell's Irish Pub and Grille on St. Patricks Day in Norman, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. O'Connell's was following the restrictions at the time to have no more than 50 people gathered together and limited the number of customers allowed in at once. [Nate Billings/The Oklahoman]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-57152cb9751222d409edd57dd2974e3b.jpg" alt="Photo - The exterior of O'Connell's Irish Pub and Grille on St. Patricks Day in Norman, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. [Nate Billings/The Oklahoman]" title="The exterior of O'Connell's Irish Pub and Grille on St. Patricks Day in Norman, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. [Nate Billings/The Oklahoman]"><figcaption>The exterior of O'Connell's Irish Pub and Grille on St. Patricks Day in Norman, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. [Nate Billings/The Oklahoman]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-bb2042dfc164d737c8f827c9a77947c5.jpg" alt="Photo - A cyclist wears a mask and googles while riding north on a sidewalk along Jenkins Ave. on the University of Oklahoma campus in Norman, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. [Nate Billings/The Oklahoman]" title="A cyclist wears a mask and googles while riding north on a sidewalk along Jenkins Ave. on the University of Oklahoma campus in Norman, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. [Nate Billings/The Oklahoman]"><figcaption>A cyclist wears a mask and googles while riding north on a sidewalk along Jenkins Ave. on the University of Oklahoma campus in Norman, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. [Nate Billings/The Oklahoman]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-fa7e3800f2ca6c2f59449510a1ddcff0.jpg" alt="Photo - People drink inside O'Connell's Irish Pub and Grille on St. Patricks Day in Norman, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. O'Connell's was following the restrictions at the time to have no more than 50 people gathered together and limited the number of customers allowed in at once. [Nate Billings/The Oklahoman]" title="People drink inside O'Connell's Irish Pub and Grille on St. Patricks Day in Norman, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. O'Connell's was following the restrictions at the time to have no more than 50 people gathered together and limited the number of customers allowed in at once. [Nate Billings/The Oklahoman]"><figcaption>People drink inside O'Connell's Irish Pub and Grille on St. Patricks Day in Norman, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. O'Connell's was following the restrictions at the time to have no more than 50 people gathered together and limited the number of customers allowed in at once. [Nate Billings/The Oklahoman]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-2f7d5b1e3aab578ee35040cf7ab46b80.jpg" alt="Photo - Marles Bradley wears a mask as she waits for a takeout order of green eggs and ham outside of O'Connell's Irish Pub and Grille on St. Patricks Day in Norman, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. Bradley said she put on the mask thinking she would have to go inside the restaurant but would not have worn it if she had known the order would be brought outside to her. [Nate Billings/The Oklahoman]" title="Marles Bradley wears a mask as she waits for a takeout order of green eggs and ham outside of O'Connell's Irish Pub and Grille on St. Patricks Day in Norman, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. Bradley said she put on the mask thinking she would have to go inside the restaurant but would not have worn it if she had known the order would be brought outside to her. [Nate Billings/The Oklahoman]"><figcaption>Marles Bradley wears a mask as she waits for a takeout order of green eggs and ham outside of O'Connell's Irish Pub and Grille on St. Patricks Day in Norman, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. Bradley said she put on the mask thinking she would have to go inside the restaurant but would not have worn it if she had known the order would be brought outside to her. [Nate Billings/The Oklahoman]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-356bfc7181a17ece706e8d2a9bd9aca3.jpg" alt="Photo - People drink inside O'Connell's Irish Pub and Grille on St. Patricks Day in Norman, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. O'Connell's was following the restrictions at the time to have no more than 50 people gathered together and limited the number of customers allowed in at once. [Nate Billings/The Oklahoman]" title="People drink inside O'Connell's Irish Pub and Grille on St. Patricks Day in Norman, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. O'Connell's was following the restrictions at the time to have no more than 50 people gathered together and limited the number of customers allowed in at once. [Nate Billings/The Oklahoman]"><figcaption>People drink inside O'Connell's Irish Pub and Grille on St. Patricks Day in Norman, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. O'Connell's was following the restrictions at the time to have no more than 50 people gathered together and limited the number of customers allowed in at once. [Nate Billings/The Oklahoman]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-d9319ec9fc5a5524a5ebe1450846c53e.jpg" alt="Photo - Michelle Ridgway sanitizes a booth after customers left O'Connell's Irish Pub and Grille on St. Patricks Day in Norman, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. O'Connell's was following the restrictions at the time to have no more than 50 people gathered together and limited the number of customers allowed in at once. [Nate Billings/The Oklahoman]" title="Michelle Ridgway sanitizes a booth after customers left O'Connell's Irish Pub and Grille on St. Patricks Day in Norman, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. O'Connell's was following the restrictions at the time to have no more than 50 people gathered together and limited the number of customers allowed in at once. [Nate Billings/The Oklahoman]"><figcaption>Michelle Ridgway sanitizes a booth after customers left O'Connell's Irish Pub and Grille on St. Patricks Day in Norman, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. O'Connell's was following the restrictions at the time to have no more than 50 people gathered together and limited the number of customers allowed in at once. [Nate Billings/The Oklahoman]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-77d77c9da910a4b7bc09d7f0b79c34c2.jpg" alt="Photo - The sign letting customers know that Packard's New American Kitchen restaurant in Oklahoma City, Okla. made the decision to close in effort to prevent the spread of the coronavirus on Tuesday, March 17, 2020. The restaurant [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] " title="The sign letting customers know that Packard's New American Kitchen restaurant in Oklahoma City, Okla. made the decision to close in effort to prevent the spread of the coronavirus on Tuesday, March 17, 2020. The restaurant [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>The sign letting customers know that Packard's New American Kitchen restaurant in Oklahoma City, Okla. made the decision to close in effort to prevent the spread of the coronavirus on Tuesday, March 17, 2020. The restaurant [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-e2b665e7f387e9b2ebcde966110a9fe4.jpg" alt="Photo - Exterior of a Homeland grocery store as customers make their way to shop in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Tuesday, March 17, 2020. [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] " title="Exterior of a Homeland grocery store as customers make their way to shop in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Tuesday, March 17, 2020. [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>Exterior of a Homeland grocery store as customers make their way to shop in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Tuesday, March 17, 2020. [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-3c28d948193b2157362fe8027de511e8.jpg" alt="Photo - Sauced on Paseo's to go only sign outside the restaurant in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Tuesday, March 17, 2020. [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] " title="Sauced on Paseo's to go only sign outside the restaurant in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Tuesday, March 17, 2020. [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>Sauced on Paseo's to go only sign outside the restaurant in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Tuesday, March 17, 2020. [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-3c95ff4118bc10f24901dd5e57c739a0.jpg" alt="Photo - Stores at Bryant Square Shopping Center are pictured Edmond, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] " title="Stores at Bryant Square Shopping Center are pictured Edmond, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>Stores at Bryant Square Shopping Center are pictured Edmond, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-2d6d7feeca82183b0d0f2d51814a3738.jpg" alt="Photo - Debi Norris sits at the bar at O'Connell's Irish Pub and Grille on St. Patricks Day in Norman, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. O'Connell's was following the restrictions at the time to have no more than 50 people gathered together and limited the number of customers allowed in at once. [Nate Billings/The Oklahoman]" title="Debi Norris sits at the bar at O'Connell's Irish Pub and Grille on St. Patricks Day in Norman, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. O'Connell's was following the restrictions at the time to have no more than 50 people gathered together and limited the number of customers allowed in at once. [Nate Billings/The Oklahoman]"><figcaption>Debi Norris sits at the bar at O'Connell's Irish Pub and Grille on St. Patricks Day in Norman, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. O'Connell's was following the restrictions at the time to have no more than 50 people gathered together and limited the number of customers allowed in at once. [Nate Billings/The Oklahoman]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-a65679d7885bae81ec4b8dcde9dd7bbf.jpg" alt="Photo - A green beer sits on the bar next to a customer at O'Connell's Irish Pub and Grille on St. Patricks Day in Norman, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. O'Connell's was following the restrictions at the time to have no more than 50 people gathered together and limited the number of customers allowed in at once. [Nate Billings/The Oklahoman]" title="A green beer sits on the bar next to a customer at O'Connell's Irish Pub and Grille on St. Patricks Day in Norman, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. O'Connell's was following the restrictions at the time to have no more than 50 people gathered together and limited the number of customers allowed in at once. [Nate Billings/The Oklahoman]"><figcaption>A green beer sits on the bar next to a customer at O'Connell's Irish Pub and Grille on St. Patricks Day in Norman, Okla., Tuesday, March 17, 2020. O'Connell's was following the restrictions at the time to have no more than 50 people gathered together and limited the number of customers allowed in at once. [Nate Billings/The Oklahoman]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-b1184d793478fc39f1e93e793f468153.jpg" alt="Photo - Jeremy Witzke and Kristy Witzke pose for a photograph in the empty Tapwerks Ale House &amp; Cafe in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] " title="Jeremy Witzke and Kristy Witzke pose for a photograph in the empty Tapwerks Ale House &amp; Cafe in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>Jeremy Witzke and Kristy Witzke pose for a photograph in the empty Tapwerks Ale House &amp; Cafe in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-1fcb7b0394d1612949045a90a41e4691.jpg" alt="Photo - Jeremy Witzke and Kristy Witzke pose for a photograph in the empty Tapwerks Ale House &amp; Cafe in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] " title="Jeremy Witzke and Kristy Witzke pose for a photograph in the empty Tapwerks Ale House &amp; Cafe in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>Jeremy Witzke and Kristy Witzke pose for a photograph in the empty Tapwerks Ale House &amp; Cafe in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-44f84286f1d0bfd4d8989537098f6904.jpg" alt="Photo - H&amp;H Shooting Sports employee Charles Duvall helps customers as they shop for a gun at H&amp;H Shooting Sports in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] " title="H&amp;H Shooting Sports employee Charles Duvall helps customers as they shop for a gun at H&amp;H Shooting Sports in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>H&amp;H Shooting Sports employee Charles Duvall helps customers as they shop for a gun at H&amp;H Shooting Sports in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-c8e1474373526a9517288365345438e1.jpg" alt="Photo - Colton Vetter looks at the selection of guns at H&amp;H Shooting Sports in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] " title="Colton Vetter looks at the selection of guns at H&amp;H Shooting Sports in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>Colton Vetter looks at the selection of guns at H&amp;H Shooting Sports in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-049f444900fa2f13df1858da2d0683e4.jpg" alt="Photo - A customers takes a closer look at a handgun at H&amp;H Shooting Sports in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] " title="A customers takes a closer look at a handgun at H&amp;H Shooting Sports in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>A customers takes a closer look at a handgun at H&amp;H Shooting Sports in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-04cbb4026353633b0f97506b2b84ef99.jpg" alt="Photo - A handgun for sale at H&amp;H Shooting Sports in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] " title="A handgun for sale at H&amp;H Shooting Sports in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>A handgun for sale at H&amp;H Shooting Sports in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-08165b29840a9171a296b7a70e5209b2.jpg" alt="Photo - Ammo for sale on the shelves at H&amp;H Shooting Sports in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] " title="Ammo for sale on the shelves at H&amp;H Shooting Sports in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>Ammo for sale on the shelves at H&amp;H Shooting Sports in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-16c487d4bebd950631da4a223ded968a.jpg" alt="Photo - Cal Heinrich, right, and Chastin Phillips eat their lunch outside of Fuzzy's Taco Shop in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] " title="Cal Heinrich, right, and Chastin Phillips eat their lunch outside of Fuzzy's Taco Shop in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>Cal Heinrich, right, and Chastin Phillips eat their lunch outside of Fuzzy's Taco Shop in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-aabc115f10b5dd922fd1380c45696738.jpg" alt="Photo - A sign on the door of the the sushi bar is pictured in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] " title="A sign on the door of the the sushi bar is pictured in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>A sign on the door of the the sushi bar is pictured in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-ec7f4f129ea65683b58f50f3ff423e43.jpg" alt="Photo - The reflection of Mike Younger and Debby Warren as they eat outside at Earl's Rib Palace can be seen in the doors in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] " title="The reflection of Mike Younger and Debby Warren as they eat outside at Earl's Rib Palace can be seen in the doors in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>The reflection of Mike Younger and Debby Warren as they eat outside at Earl's Rib Palace can be seen in the doors in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-14f9d177dda6bb7bffdb135e739d3409.jpg" alt="Photo - A woman reads a notice on a window of Cities Ice Cream about takeout orders only at the Edmond Railyard location in Edmond, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Photo by Doug Hoke/The Oklahoman]" title="A woman reads a notice on a window of Cities Ice Cream about takeout orders only at the Edmond Railyard location in Edmond, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Photo by Doug Hoke/The Oklahoman]"><figcaption>A woman reads a notice on a window of Cities Ice Cream about takeout orders only at the Edmond Railyard location in Edmond, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Photo by Doug Hoke/The Oklahoman]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-5cb4dee49fec9effc49869918d32227f.jpg" alt="Photo - Car line up at the pharmacy window at Neighborhood Walmart on Second St in Edmond, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Photo by Doug Hoke/The Oklahoman]" title="Car line up at the pharmacy window at Neighborhood Walmart on Second St in Edmond, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Photo by Doug Hoke/The Oklahoman]"><figcaption>Car line up at the pharmacy window at Neighborhood Walmart on Second St in Edmond, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Photo by Doug Hoke/The Oklahoman]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-59310b1479c09f8165853ab1b1416f33.jpg" alt="Photo - Take out only notice on the window of Cities Ice Cream at the Edmond Railyard location in Edmond, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Photo by Doug Hoke/The Oklahoman]" title="Take out only notice on the window of Cities Ice Cream at the Edmond Railyard location in Edmond, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Photo by Doug Hoke/The Oklahoman]"><figcaption>Take out only notice on the window of Cities Ice Cream at the Edmond Railyard location in Edmond, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Photo by Doug Hoke/The Oklahoman]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-91d7b1df53fc5b909d5ec2e9adf9700d.jpg" alt="Photo - A note on the door of Fuzzy's Taco Shop is pictured in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] " title="A note on the door of Fuzzy's Taco Shop is pictured in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>A note on the door of Fuzzy's Taco Shop is pictured in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-c15d09ae5665f4bc757a544bc4d27d31.jpg" alt="Photo - A sign on the door of Starbucks is pictured in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] " title="A sign on the door of Starbucks is pictured in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>A sign on the door of Starbucks is pictured in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-9451b4c96ac132ec42d2f5a150b1d835.jpg" alt="Photo - Sheridan Ave is pictured in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] " title="Sheridan Ave is pictured in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>Sheridan Ave is pictured in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-5617133cf60923319f8eed64bf490bf8.jpg" alt="Photo - Bricktown is pictured in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] " title="Bricktown is pictured in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>Bricktown is pictured in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-9798cfc3eecd6a22bcd4bdd63f2f1c3e.jpg" alt="Photo - Bricktown is pictured in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] " title="Bricktown is pictured in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>Bricktown is pictured in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-8b0bbf331294ac8186bf6ee7fece3701.jpg" alt="Photo - Chastin Phillips gets a to-go order from Fuzzy's Taco Shop in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] " title="Chastin Phillips gets a to-go order from Fuzzy's Taco Shop in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>Chastin Phillips gets a to-go order from Fuzzy's Taco Shop in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-c7224df0290babe93eb5614ae9bbbc11.jpg" alt="Photo - Cal Heinrich, right, and Chastin Phillips eat their lunch outside of Fuzzy's Taco Shop in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] " title="Cal Heinrich, right, and Chastin Phillips eat their lunch outside of Fuzzy's Taco Shop in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>Cal Heinrich, right, and Chastin Phillips eat their lunch outside of Fuzzy's Taco Shop in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-220d19ec95894fc5a4a0232712910a65.jpg" alt="Photo - A sign on the door of Marble Slab Creamery in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] " title="A sign on the door of Marble Slab Creamery in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>A sign on the door of Marble Slab Creamery in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-86f03b87239fbcaed824da0dfa125b32.jpg" alt="Photo - The reflection of Mike Younger and Debby Warren as they eat outside at Earl's Rib Palace can be seen in the doors in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] " title="The reflection of Mike Younger and Debby Warren as they eat outside at Earl's Rib Palace can be seen in the doors in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>The reflection of Mike Younger and Debby Warren as they eat outside at Earl's Rib Palace can be seen in the doors in Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-a0b99f25ebe75837918de90b953f64b1.jpg" alt="Photo - Exterior of Pelican Bay Aquatic Center in Edmond, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Photo by Doug Hoke/The Oklahoman]" title="Exterior of Pelican Bay Aquatic Center in Edmond, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Photo by Doug Hoke/The Oklahoman]"><figcaption>Exterior of Pelican Bay Aquatic Center in Edmond, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Photo by Doug Hoke/The Oklahoman]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-7293bc91c6391f5d6972dfa8df3ddc8d.jpg" alt="Photo - Exterior of Fire Station No. 1 in Edmond, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Photo by Doug Hoke/The Oklahoman]" title="Exterior of Fire Station No. 1 in Edmond, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Photo by Doug Hoke/The Oklahoman]"><figcaption>Exterior of Fire Station No. 1 in Edmond, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Photo by Doug Hoke/The Oklahoman]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-8176a6b21972206f92b88c958a10a8fe.jpg" alt="Photo - Broadway and 1st Street, downtown in Edmond, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Photo by Doug Hoke/The Oklahoman]" title="Broadway and 1st Street, downtown in Edmond, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Photo by Doug Hoke/The Oklahoman]"><figcaption>Broadway and 1st Street, downtown in Edmond, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Photo by Doug Hoke/The Oklahoman]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-7b0b339d45d850d99e505138b158396b.jpg" alt="Photo - Edmond Railyard location in Edmond, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Photo by Doug Hoke/The Oklahoman]" title="Edmond Railyard location in Edmond, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Photo by Doug Hoke/The Oklahoman]"><figcaption>Edmond Railyard location in Edmond, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Photo by Doug Hoke/The Oklahoman]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-eb61fdb1098bf60ca0e5258501e04fb9.jpg" alt="Photo - Edmond Railyard location in Edmond, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Photo by Doug Hoke/The Oklahoman]" title="Edmond Railyard location in Edmond, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Photo by Doug Hoke/The Oklahoman]"><figcaption>Edmond Railyard location in Edmond, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Photo by Doug Hoke/The Oklahoman]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-42d14a63b570c1285c9cdba130ce983a.jpg" alt="Photo - Farmers Market in Edmond, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Photo by Doug Hoke/The Oklahoman]" title="Farmers Market in Edmond, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Photo by Doug Hoke/The Oklahoman]"><figcaption>Farmers Market in Edmond, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Photo by Doug Hoke/The Oklahoman]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-6d34d3f9e4b4b7e65689dce8614738d4.jpg" alt="Photo - Hobby Lobby retail store in Edmond, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Photo by Doug Hoke/The Oklahoman]" title="Hobby Lobby retail store in Edmond, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Photo by Doug Hoke/The Oklahoman]"><figcaption>Hobby Lobby retail store in Edmond, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Photo by Doug Hoke/The Oklahoman]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-36daa255629f71357c6603c0a8244ea5.jpg" alt="Photo - Exterior of food and drink businesses in the Plaza District in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Tuesday, March 17, 2020. [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] " title="Exterior of food and drink businesses in the Plaza District in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Tuesday, March 17, 2020. [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>Exterior of food and drink businesses in the Plaza District in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Tuesday, March 17, 2020. [Chris Landsberger/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-8ade583341ac51e57b04fb0b8d5229c0.jpg" alt="Photo - Edmond Railyard location in Edmond, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Photo by Doug Hoke/The Oklahoman]" title="Edmond Railyard location in Edmond, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Photo by Doug Hoke/The Oklahoman]"><figcaption>Edmond Railyard location in Edmond, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Photo by Doug Hoke/The Oklahoman]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-a50b55a5c6ed3595ada8247250d46057.jpg" alt="Photo - infectious disease physician David Chansolme with Integris speaks during a COVID-19 press conference in front of Integris Baptist Medical Center in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Bryan Terry/The Oklahoman] " title="infectious disease physician David Chansolme with Integris speaks during a COVID-19 press conference in front of Integris Baptist Medical Center in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Bryan Terry/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>infectious disease physician David Chansolme with Integris speaks during a COVID-19 press conference in front of Integris Baptist Medical Center in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Bryan Terry/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-7c324064e757138dc00d1671ff4f99e2.jpg" alt="Photo - A person wears a mask as they drive away from Integris Baptist Medical Center in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Bryan Terry/The Oklahoman] " title="A person wears a mask as they drive away from Integris Baptist Medical Center in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Bryan Terry/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>A person wears a mask as they drive away from Integris Baptist Medical Center in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Bryan Terry/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-3d637e98c8c7feeb04f3d848b1b43deb.jpg" alt="Photo - Integris Executive Vice President and Chief Nurse Executive Kerri Bayer speaks during a COVID-19 press conference in front of Integris Baptist Medical Center in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Bryan Terry/The Oklahoman] " title="Integris Executive Vice President and Chief Nurse Executive Kerri Bayer speaks during a COVID-19 press conference in front of Integris Baptist Medical Center in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Bryan Terry/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>Integris Executive Vice President and Chief Nurse Executive Kerri Bayer speaks during a COVID-19 press conference in front of Integris Baptist Medical Center in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Bryan Terry/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-6847f8f405ec8bb9cf64f1c84208a024.jpg" alt="Photo - Integris Executive Vice President and Chief Physician Executive Tommy Ibrahim speaks during a COVID-19 press conference in front of Integris Baptist Medical Center in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Bryan Terry/The Oklahoman] " title="Integris Executive Vice President and Chief Physician Executive Tommy Ibrahim speaks during a COVID-19 press conference in front of Integris Baptist Medical Center in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Bryan Terry/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>Integris Executive Vice President and Chief Physician Executive Tommy Ibrahim speaks during a COVID-19 press conference in front of Integris Baptist Medical Center in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Bryan Terry/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-b9f21179d200da44d46585cc8fb09157.jpg" alt="Photo - Infectious disease physician David Chansolme with Integris speaks during a COVID-19 press conference in front of Integris Baptist Medical Center in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Bryan Terry/The Oklahoman] " title="Infectious disease physician David Chansolme with Integris speaks during a COVID-19 press conference in front of Integris Baptist Medical Center in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Bryan Terry/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>Infectious disease physician David Chansolme with Integris speaks during a COVID-19 press conference in front of Integris Baptist Medical Center in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Bryan Terry/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-6ee0281391d6661803227f26fd20e31d.jpg" alt="Photo - Integris President and CEO Tim Pehrson speaks during a COVID-19 press conference in front of Integris Baptist Medical Center in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Bryan Terry/The Oklahoman] " title="Integris President and CEO Tim Pehrson speaks during a COVID-19 press conference in front of Integris Baptist Medical Center in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Bryan Terry/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>Integris President and CEO Tim Pehrson speaks during a COVID-19 press conference in front of Integris Baptist Medical Center in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. [Bryan Terry/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure>
Chris Casteel

Chris Casteel began working for The Oklahoman's Norman bureau in 1982 while a student at the University of Oklahoma. Casteel covered the police beat, federal courts and the state Legislature in Oklahoma City. From 1990 through 2016, he was the... Read more ›

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