All the dirt, news, culture and commentary for Oklahoma's second century.

Ron Paul Supporters Submit Challenge to Oklahoma GOP State Convention

Andrew W. Griffin / Red Dirt Report
A letter was delivered to OK GOP Chairman Matt Pinnell by convention delegates seeking to challenge the outcome of the chaotic OKGOP convention on 5/12/12.
Fertile Ground Compost Service
Help support Red Dirt Report

OKLAHOMA CITY -- Attorneys
representing grassroots supporters of presidential candidate Ron Paul delivered
a letter, dated Tuesday, May 22nd, to Oklahoma GOP Chairman Matt Pinnell
challenging the “the legitimacy and legality of the purported selection of at-large
delegates and alternates to the Republican National Convention at the May 12,
2012 Oklahoma Republican Party Convention.” The letter contends that the
election of the State Republican Executive Committee’s national

delegate slate is void
because convention chairman Marc Nuttle failed to conduct the vote by roll call
ballot as required in party rules. Instead, Nuttle called only for voice and
standing votes, which do not take into account proportional weighting by

“We’re simply asking
for the rules to be followed,” stated Lukus Collins, a national delegate from
Oklahoma’s 5th congressional district. “This is not a grudge match.
This is a black and white issue. State party rules as well as the convention
rules clearly require a roll call vote by ballot for the election of national
delegates, and that didn’t happen inside at the state convention.” According to
Collins, a draft of the letter was presented to Chairman Pinnell over the weekend
in an effort to resolve the matter privately, but the offer was ultimately

The letter cites
further rules violations, including improper adjournment while convention
business was still outstanding.

Following the sudden
and chaotic adjournment – which included the lights being turned out and wall partitions
cutting off nearly one-third of the delegates from the rest of the convention –
nearly 400 delegates gathered in the parking lot outside to continue business
as a rump convention. During the outdoor proceedings, an alternative slate of
national delegates and alternates was elected by roll call ballot, according to
Jake Peters, who was elected to chair the continued convention.

The challenge letter
requests that the delegates and alternates elected at the outdoor convention be
recognized by the Oklahoma GOP as the legitimate at-large delegation, and that
national delegation credentialing be forestalled until the challenge is
resolved. The letter indicates that the petitioners are prepared to take their
challenge formally to the national Committee on Contests.

Steve Dickson, a
precinct chairman and state delegate, said, “It is unfortunate that we are
forced to take this action compelling compliance with our own rules. I hope
that our efforts can prevent more problems, in particular the seating of our
full delegation in Tampa, by addressing the blatant violations that occurred
now rather than later.”

For more information
contact 405-371-2574 or email Lukus Collins at

UPDATE: Matt Pinnell, the OK GOP Chairman, sent us this statement: It is our position that all of the delegates elected at the convention were elected properly and majority clearly ruled with a minority voice. The delegates and alternate delegates elected at the convention are the delegates and alternates that will be certified to the RNC.  Any other people who claim they were elected as delegates in the parking lot after we adjourned at 5 pm are not delegates and will not be certified to the RNC. There are certainly provisions in the RNC Rules that allow individuals to bring a challenge to the seating of delegates.  There are specific RNC Rules that govern such challenges.  A Committee on Contests considers the challenge in the first instance.  The final decider is the Credentials Committee in Tampa Bay.

Also, learn more at

Enjoy this? Please share it!

About the Author

Andrew W. Griffin

Editor & Owner.

Andrew W. Griffin received his Bachelor of Science in Journalism from...

read more

Enjoy this? Please share it!

About Red Dirt Report

Red Dirt Report was launched July 4, 2007 as an independent news website covering all manner of news, culture, entertainment and lifestyle stories that affect and interest Oklahoma readers and readers outside of our state. Our mission is to educate, promote civic engagement and discourse on public policy, government and politics. Our experienced journalists provided balanced in-depth coverage of news stories that affect Oklahomans. Our opinion/editorial stories come from a wide range of political view points. We carry out our mission by reporting, writing, and posting news and information. read more

Member of the Oklahoma Press Association
Member of Investigative Reporters & Editors
Member of Diversity Business Association
Member of Uptown 23rd
Rotary Club of Bricktown OKC
Keep it Local OK