A metro mayor claims a state lawmaker is harassing her over a decision to require bar and restaurant employees wear facemasks to combat COVID-19.
Yukon Mayor Shelli Selby filed a police report claiming Rep. Jay Stegall (R-Yukon) "harassed, ridiculed, demeaned and threatened" her. She also sent a letter to Speaker of the House Charles McCall (R-Atoka) asking him to educate his member on the powers given to local officials.
“I needed it to stop,” she said. “I have other things to do with my time as mayor.”
The mayor claims Steagall told her friends she was in "big trouble," "people were out to get (her)" and "(she) should talk with him to keep (herself) safe."
“Those were not my words,” Steagall said. “I think those words may have come from a third-party. I'm not sure. I can't speak to that.”
Steagall told News 9 he did reach out to Selby’s friends.
“When he started to call my personal friends to set meetings up, I then said that is enough,” Selby said. “What really went overboard with me was when he started going to local restaurants and telling them that they did not have to obey my mandate.”
“We have constituents that are both local residents or employees at restaurants and bars, or restaurant owners that have come to me with these concerns,” Steagall said. “All I did was take those concerns to our mayor. Some of those constituents are very upset about this.”
The mayor said she even had a retired Canadian County judge reach out to the lawmaker to explain the legality of the emergency order.
Stegall also represents parts of Oklahoma and Mustang. Mayor David Holt said the lawmaker never reached out after he issued a similar temporary emergency order requiring masks for restaurant and bar workers last month.
“I believe that part of it is just that he feels that he can ramrod me I'll leave it at that,” Selby said. “I've spoken with several other female elected officials who feel like many times we are targeted because we are female.”
Speaker Charles McCall’s office said they are not commenting on the seven-page letter.
House Minority Leader Emily Virgin (D-Norman) was also sent the letter. She said she’s not prepared to comment on the specifics of the mayor’s letter however, “female elected officials, like women in myriad professions, are judged and attacked in significantly harsher ways than their male counterparts. I fear that misogyny will continue to exist in Oklahoma politics until voters demand it doesn’t.”