Victory for Liberty in OK-5
A remarkable event has occurred. On Saturday, March 31st the 5th Congressional District Republican Convention was held at the Reed Center, in Midwest City, Oklahoma. More than 360 District Delegates were to decide who would represent them in Tampa, Florida at the GOP National Convention. First, some background information:
Oklahoma has five Congressional Districts. Per RNC Rules, each District is allocated 3 Delegates and 3 Alternates. Additionally, an Elector and Alternate Elector are chosen. OK-5 comprises most of Oklahoma County (which means Oklahoma City) and parts of Pottawatomie and Seminole Counties. Oklahoma County is allocated 320 delegate votes, Seminole 11, and Pottawatomie 37. Initially, Oklahoma County stated 180 people in attendance, Seminole 11, and Pottawatomie 17. All counties had an "Open" delegation status, meaning each person in attendance could have a fraction of a vote, up to a maximum of 2 votes. Due to this (and after it was pointed out to the Chair via Point of Order), Pottawatomie County had their actual delegate vote total reduced to 34 votes (17 x 2).
The prior history of "issues" with Oklahoma County is something I have written about before (Oklahoma County GOP Convention Recap). In spite of prior issues, a decision was made by grassroots Liberty activists (Ron Paul grassroots supporters) to fight only one fight:
We accepted the credentials report with no debate.
We accepted the rules with no debate.
We did not complain about the room choice - one that blocked all cell phone signals.
We immediately pulled stickers off when told "no electioneering".
We followed the rules as we were given them, with no input in their creation.
We did not object when, after the first votes had been cast, it was determined that Oklahoma County actually had 196 people, not 180.
We amended the already passed Credentials Report via voice vote.
We did not object when the first vote was thrown out and re-done with the new total for Oklahoma County.
May I present the winners:
All three delegates, all three alternates, and the elector are open Ron Paul supporters. From left to right, with who they have supported listed, Alternate Elector Chad Smith (Santorum), Elector Duane Crumbacher (Ron Paul), Alternate Delegate Porter Davis (Ron Paul), Alternate Delegate Diane Engel Thomas (Ron Paul), Alternate Delegate Tina Lou (Ron Paul), Delegate Steve Dickson (Ron Paul), Delegate Lukus Collins (Ron Paul), Delegate John Bates (Ron Paul). I base the determination on Mr. Smith on his speech and Facebook profile picture, which is with Senator Santorum. The others are known Ron Paul supporters (there were stickers advocating each candidate at the Ron Paul grassroots table).
To be clear, each of these Delegates is bound to vote for someone other than Ron Paul. For the OK GOP Rules on this, go here. For the state law on this, go here. Although Section 104H is in the Rules, Section 104G and Section 105 are on the Affidavit binding all Delegates. There are some points to consider, however:
If Santorum drops out or endorses another, Ron Paul will pick up a Delegate.
If Gingrich drops out or endorses another, Ron Paul will pick up a Delegate.
If Romney drops out or endorses another, Ron Paul will pick up a Delegate.
All other votes at the National Convention are NOT governed by anything other than the conscience of the Delegates.
The vote was close - but only one candidate was forced into a runoff (and it was me). After 47 delegates were added due to rules from the Oklahoma County Convention, as well as 13 elected officials, we still won. It was an amazing day.
The Liberty Movement is alive and well in central Oklahoma.