Law & Principles

McAfee & Taft, Paycom increase lawfare against Oklahoma conservatives

Staff | May 23, 2024

OKLAHOMA CITY (May 23, 2024)—More than four years after Paycom’s lawsuit against the Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs was originally filed, Paycom’s attorneys at the McAfee & Taft law firm have just now realized they want to take more depositions in the case.

Attorneys with McAfee & Taft have filed a motion requesting depositions from three staff members at OCPA and one OCPA board member. One of the OCPA staff members that McAfee & Taft lawyers want to depose did not even work for OCPA four years ago when Paycom first filed its lawsuit.

“There is only one possible explanation for this latest bizarre request from McAfee & Taft,” said OCPA President Jonathan Small. “McAfee & Taft is recognized as Oklahoma’s largest, and one of its most successful, law firms, and knows better from its success defending others from meritless lawsuits, so the firm is simply trying to drag out their client’s meritless lawsuit. This is obvious to anyone with an ounce of common sense.”

In a 2020 article, OCPA briefly referenced Paycom CEO Chad Richison’s public advocacy for draconian COVID policies that would have had significant negative impact on the livelihood of many Oklahomans. Among other things, Richison wanted to dictate how Oklahomans purchased a box of cereal and other goods at the grocery store. The article linked directly to a copy of Richison’s public letter demanding those draconian COVID restrictions, allowing Oklahomans to view the entire document for themselves.

Paycom subsequently sued OCPA, claiming the think tank engaged in defamation and tortious interference by briefly highlighting Richison’s public comments.

The Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs has filed a motion for summary judgment.

“The law is on OCPA’s side and there are no meaningful facts in dispute,” Small said. “It is time to end McAfee Taft and Paycom’s lawfare against Oklahoma conservatives.”


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