Bylaws

Bylaws of the Libertarian Party of Oklahoma

Adopted in Convention at Oklahoma City, Oklahoma on 19 August 1972 and as amended in 1973, 1974, 1975, 1976, 1977, 1981, 1983, 1984, 1986, 1988, 1989, 1991, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2001, 2003, 2008, 2010 and 2016

Article I: Party Name

Section 1.01. The name of the organization is the Libertarian Party of Oklahoma, hereinafter referred to as the “Party”. From time to time, the organization may also refer to itself as the Oklahoma Libertarian Party.

Article II: Duration

Section 2.01. The duration of the Party shall be perpetual.

Article III: Objectives

Section 3.01. The objectives of the Party are to enable citizens of the State of Oklahoma to organize into a political party and promote the Libertarian principles necessary to the existence of a free society by:

(a) Publicizing the principles of libertarianism and securing ballot recognition and voter registration rights; (b) Seeking out, developing, nominating, and campaigning for the election to public office of Libertarian candidates who pledge adherence to the Declaration of Principles of the Party, and supporting these Libertarians during their continuance in office; (c) Extending cooperation to other organizations and groups when this furthers libertarian principles and objectives.

Article IV: Membership

Section 4.01

Membership in the Party shall consist of Registered Libertarians and Enrolled Libertarians. Registered Libertarians shall be those who are registered Oklahoma voters with the political affiliation of Libertarian, and whose rights and privileges regarding voting, voter registration, and being a candidate for public office are granted to them by the State of Oklahoma. Registration as a Libertarian voter with the State of Oklahoma is not sufficient for voting participation within the Party as an Officer, State Executive Council member, or Convention Delegate, such participation being reserved to Enrolled Libertarians. Enrolled Libertarians are those who have paid the dues as provided by the authority of the Libertarian Party of Oklahoma State Executive Council, and who have signed the Affirmation designated in Section 4.01.1  Those Enrolled Members of the Party who are also registered voters must be registered as Libertarians should the State of Oklahoma recognize the Party. Enrolled Members of the Party who are also registered voters may be registered as Independents or as a member of another political party recognized by the State of Oklahoma should the Party NOT be recognized. Due to possible deadline restrictions common to Oklahoma’s Voting Regulations, the Executive Council with a 3/4th vote may at their discretion allow Voters registered as Independents or another party recognized by the state of Oklahoma to be considered as Enrolled even in the years the Party is also recognized, providing the decision is made public with the call to convention.

Section 4.01.1 -Affirmation of Principle

Enrolled members of the Party must sign in affirmation of the following statement: “I hereby certify that I do not believe in or advocate the initiation of force as a means of achieving political or social goals.”

Section 4.01.2 -Life Membership

Life members shall be those who have signed the Affirmation of Principle designated in Section 4.01.1 and paid the requisite dues, or have performed such service as to be granted Life Membership in the Party by the vote of 2/3 of the delegates present at any regular convention. Life Members shall in all matters, other than dues, be considered as Enrolled Libertarians.

Section 4.02

Enrolled Members of the Party shall have the right to participate in official affairs and governance of the Party in accordance with these Bylaws. Such right shall be inviolate and the willful abridgment of such right by an officer or member of any committee of the Party shall be sufficient cause for removal of such officer or committee member. At any time a vote is taken, those eligible to vote shall do so in person. No proxy voting shall be allowed by the Party.

Section 4.03

Enrolled members of the Party who are residents of the State of Oklahoma or are registered to vote in the State of Oklahoma may be delegates to any convention of the Party, an elected officer of the Party and/or a member of the State Executive Council. Any Enrolled members of the Party may attend any convention or meeting of the Party and/or be appointed by the State Executive Council to any non-elective office.

Section 4.04

Enrolled members of the Party who are residents of the State of Oklahoma or are registered to vote in the State of Oklahoma and are members in good standing of the National Libertarian Party may be elected as a delegate or as an alternate delegate to the Regular National Convention. They must also have any other qualifications required by the National Libertarian Party.

Section 4.05

Enrolled members of the Party who are residents of the State of Oklahoma or are registered to vote in the State of Oklahoma, and are also Registered members of the Party may be elected as Presidential Electors. They must also have any other qualifications required by the State of Oklahoma.

Article V: Officers of the Party

Section 5.01

The officers of the Party shall be a Chairperson, a Vice-Chairperson, a Secretary, and a Treasurer. Election of such officers shall be in Convention and the officers-elect will take office upon the adjournment of the first National Libertarian Party Convention following the Libertarian Party of Oklahoma biennial Convention, and shall serve until the adjournment of the next National Libertarian Convention following the next Libertarian Party of Oklahoma biennial Convention wherein their successors have been elected. Vacant offices shall be filled by election at an even-numbered year Convention of the Party.

Section 5.02

No offices shall be combined. Only Enrolled members of the Party who are residents of the State of Oklahoma or are registered to vote in the State of Oklahoma shall be eligible for election and/or appointment to any elective office of the Party. Any enrolled member of the Party in good standing may be appointed to any non-elective office, position and/or committee of the Party. The resignation of any officer shall be submitted in writing to the State Secretary of the Party, or lacking a State Secretary, to the State Treasurer of the Party. The resignation shall be forwarded to the State Executive Council for action.

Section 5.03 -Chairperson

The State Chairperson is the chief executive officer of the Party and shall coordinate the activities of the State Executive Council and Party members in achieving the objectives and goals of the Party. The Chairperson shall be responsible for the enforcement of these Bylaws and the carrying out of the directions and resolutions of the State Executive Council and the State Convention in accordance with these Bylaws. The Chairperson shall assist in all National and State Libertarian Party campaigns and all activities, functions, and campaigns within the State,  unless these conflict fundamentally with the principles of the Party. and The Chairperson shall serve as a member of all standing committees. The State Chairperson shall preside at all meetings of the State Executive Council and may, at his/her discretion, preside at Party Conventions. The Chairperson shall be the primary spokesperson, but may delegate this function to any other Party member in good standing. The Chairperson shall insure that all state and federal laws pertaining to political parties are complied with and make provision for legal services for the Party. The Chairperson shall oversee the development of new county or regional organizations. The Chairperson shall organize research into present laws at the state level and develop proposals for change in a Libertarian direction.

Section 5.04 -Vice-Chairperson

The State Vice-Chairperson shall act as assistant to the State Chairperson and shall perform such duties as the Chairperson shall assign, and perform the duties of the State Chairperson in the absence of the State Chairperson and/or until a successor State Chairperson is chosen by the State Executive Council. The Vice-Chairperson shall oversee the planning and facilitation of the State Convention. The Vice-Chairperson shall arrange the facilities and equipment for Executive Committee meetings.

Section 5.05 -Secretary

The State Secretary shall be the recording officer at all State Executive Committee meetings and State Conventions and shall maintain such records for future use and be responsible for all correspondence of the State Executive Council.

Section 5.06 -Treasurer

The State Treasurer shall be custodian of all funds of the State Executive Council and the Party and shall disburse the same in accordance with decisions to spend such funds by the State Executive Council. The State Treasurer shall keep a strict account of all receipts and disbursements, with the dates thereof, from whom received and to whom disbursed, and the purpose thereof. The accounts of the State Treasurer shall be accessible during normal business hours to any member of the State Executive Council, or to any Enrolled Member of the Party in good standing if that member so request in writing on twenty-four (24) hours advance notice. The State Treasurer shall report at such time or times as requested by the State Executive Council in such form as will provide all necessary information relative to the amount of receipts, disbursements, and cash balance, together with expenditures charged to each item of the budget and the unexpended balance of the budget items. At the end of the State Treasurer’s term of office, the Treasurer shall deliver to that person’s successor all monies, property, books, and records of the State Executive Council and the Party maintained by that person or in that person’s possession. The State Treasurer shall coordinate fundraising efforts with those of the local organizations.

Article VI: State Executive Council

Section 6.01

The State Executive Council shall be composed of the following:

(a) The four (4) elected officers of the Party; (b) The Immediate Past Chairperson of the Party, unless removed for cause; (c) The Chairpersons of any county or regional organizations recognized by a 2/3 vote of all members of the State Executive Council.

Section 6.02

The State Executive Council shall take office upon the adjournment of the first National Libertarian Party Convention following the Libertarian Party of Oklahoma biennial Convention, and shall serve until the adjournment of the next National Libertarian Convention following the next Libertarian Party of Oklahoma biennial Convention wherein their successors have been elected. Any member of the State Executive Council who shall be absent from (2) successive regularly scheduled meetings specified in Section 6.04 of these Bylaws may be removed from office for cause following a 2/3 vote of the State Executive Council
Section 6.03

Subordinate only to the authority of a duly called and convened State Convention of the Party in, and of, the State of Oklahoma under these Bylaws, the State Executive Council is the supreme authority of the Party under these Bylaws. The State Executive Council shall have the authority, by majority vote, except as otherwise provided herein, to perform all functions which the biennial State Convention might perform under these Bylaws except: (a) The Council shall have no authority to amend, alter, or repeal any part of the Platform of the Party; (b) nor, amend, alter, or repeal any part of the Bylaws of the Party; (c) Nor, call a Special Convention for the purpose of electing any person to any position on the State Executive Committee, unless three (3) or more vacancies should occur at, or between, two consecutive regularly scheduled meetings of the Council.

Section 6.04

There shall be regularly scheduled meetings of the State Executive Council held at least quarterly if not monthly. These meetings will be scheduled at least a month in advance and notice will be given to all Enrolled members of the Party. The State Executive Council shall always meet just after the closing of the State Party Convention. Special meetings may be called at any time either by the State Chairperson on the chair’s own initiative, or by the State Secretary, upon receipt of a written petition by one-fourth (1/4) of the members of the Council. Any such petition shall specify the purpose of the meeting and the time and place the meeting is to be held. If the State Chairperson and the State Vice-Chairperson shall both be unavailable at the time specified for the meeting to begin, then the members present shall choose one person among themselves to preside at that meeting. No action shall be taken at any special meeting without the consent of a majority of the entire Council. A quorum of the State Executive Council shall be a simple majority of the members of the Council, excluding any vacancies. In order to have decisions made committing to the spending of Party money, the State Treasurer or the State Chair must be at the meeting.

Section 6.05

A vacancy in any position of the State Executive Council shall be filled for the unexpired term by majority vote of the entire Council solely at a regularly scheduled meeting, except that if there are three (3) or more vacancies, then the remaining members shall have the authority to call, by majority vote, a Special State Convention to fill those vacancies. If, for any reason, vacancies and absences preclude the Council from obtaining a quorum for any regularly scheduled meeting, then any one (1) of the remaining members of the Council shall have authority to issue a Call to Convention and the first Call issued shall be the valid Call and the member so issuing it shall convene and preside at that Convention. If the Council should ever deadlock in attempting to fill any vacancy on the Council, then all members shall draw lots to disqualify one (1) member from voting on that vacancy.

Section 6.06

No duly elected officer or member of the State Executive Council shall be removed from office except for cause as set forth in Section 4.02, gross negligence of duties, financial misconduct with Party funds, or a clear violation of the Affirmation of Principle. Removal for cause shall require a hearing before a duly called meeting of the State Executive Council. The cause must be set forth in writing and the removal must be approved by a 2/3 vote of the State Executive Council. No person shall vote at a hearing for his/her own removal. If the charge is against the Chairperson, the hearing shall be conducted by a member of the State Executive Council; such member shall be selected by the majority vote of the Council for that purpose.

Section 6.07

The State Central Committee shall consist of the four Officers of the Party. The powers of the State Central Committee shall be those of the State Executive Council between regularly scheduled meetings of the State Executive Council and subject to ratification at the next State Executive Council meeting, except that the powers of the State Executive Council under Article Fifteen by the Bylaws shall not be usable by the State Central Committee.

Article VII: State Conventions

Section 7.01

The Party shall meet every 2 years in a State Convention held during even numbered years during the months of March, April, or May. The State Convention shall be scheduled to comply with National Libertarian Party deadlines for the election of delegates for the National Convention, or any other National Libertarian Party or Libertarian Party of Oklahoma requirements. Officers and members of the State Executive Council shall be elected at this time. If this by-law is accepted at a Convention during an odd-numbered year, officers voted upon during that Convention shall serve a one year term. Amendments to the Platform and Bylaws of the Party may be considered at any convention. The State Executive Council at any time in the interests of the Party, may direct the State Chairperson, or if that person be not available or if said office is vacant, the State Secretary, to issue a Call for special meetings or Conventions and shall fix the times and places thereof. The procedure for calling regular State Conventions shall apply to the calling of special meetings and conventions so far as applicable and not inconsistent with these Bylaws.

Section 7.02

The State Executive Council shall fix the times and places for holding State Conventions of the Party. The State Executive Council shall direct the State Vice-Chairperson, or if that person be not available, or said office is vacant, the State Secretary, to issue the Call to Convention no less than (30) days prior to the fixed date for convening the State Convention. The State Executive Council may permit the State Vice-Chairperson, or State Secretary, as the case may be, to fix the exact hour and place of conventions consistent with these Bylaws. The State Executive Council at the time a Call to Convention is issued shall fix the such delegate registration fees, if any, as it deems appropriate, so long as such fees are equal for all delegates; and, may at any time designate such officials as may be necessary to arrange for a Convention. The State Executive Council shall meet immediately preceding any State Convention for the purpose of establishing the organization of the State Convention and thereafter make its report and recommendations to the State Convention.

Section 7.03

Any Enrolled member of the Party who is a resident of the State of Oklahoma or is appropriately registered to vote in the State of Oklahoma under the guidelines set forth in Article IV Section 401.1 and who registers and pays Convention dues (as determined by the State Executive Council) may participate in the Convention and shall be recognized as a delegate. Any Enrolled member of the Party not qualified to be a delegate, who registers and pays the Convention dues (as determined by the State Executive Council) may participate in the Convention and shall be recognized as an observer. Only the delegates shall be allowed to vote at a convention. Non-members of the Party may attend the Convention without the rights or privileges of participation. Guests of the Convention need not pay the Convention dues.

Section 7.04

Prior to the Convention, the State Executive Council may designate such Convention officials, assistants, and committees as may be necessary to arrange for the Convention.

Section 7.05

The order of reports to the Convention shall be Credentials, Rules, Platform and lastly any other reports in such order as the State Executive Council shall designate at the time of their selection.

Section 7.06

In the report on the Platform, each plank shall be voted on separately.

Section 7.07

All nominations for candidates for Party offices shall be from the floor and no nominations by committee shall be permitted. In voting for candidates for Party office, voting shall be by Australian secret ballot.

Section 7.08

The order of business at conventions shall be established by the State Executive Council in the Call to Convention; however, a petition by twenty (20) percent of the delegate-members shall be sufficient to place any legitimate item on the agenda for consideration by the Convention.

Section 7.09

A quorum at a Convention shall be a majority of those delegate-members registered as attending the Convention.

Section 7.10

Debate on any question shall be limited to twenty (20) minutes and no person shall speak for more than five (5) minutes on any given question. If debate on any question extends to the time limit, then the Chairperson must immediately call for a vote to extend debate.

Section 7.11

In voting at a Convention for delegates to National Convention of the Libertarian Party, each delegate-member shall cast a ballot for as many persons as the total number of delegates to be elected, and whenever any candidate obtains the votes of a majority of those delegate-members voting (in repeated ballots if necessary) that person shall be elected as a delegate to the National Convention. After the election of delegates, a single ballot shall be taken for the election of alternate delegates, with each delegate-member of the Convention voting for as many persons as the number of alternates.  Alternates shall be ranked in the order of the number of votes received for each. The number of National Alternates may exceed the number of National Delegates.  The election of delegates to a National Convention may, if necessary to comply with National rules, be held at a special convention called by the State Executive Council for that purpose only. All candidates for delegate or alternate to a National Convention shall be nominated from the floor, and no nominations by committee shall be permitted. The candidate must be at the convention to accept or reject their nomination. The list of delegates and alternates shall be presented to the National Libertarian Party for their approval. The delegation shall choose their Chairperson and Vice-Chairperson by their own election after the delegation has been elected.

Section 7.12

If at any time during the proceedings of a National Convention a vacancy occurs or a Delegate is not present when a vote is to be taken on the Convention floor, then the highest ranking Alternate present shall step up to fill the vacancy. If the vacancy is temporary, the Delegate who was elected by the State Convention shall resume office immediately upon return to the floor. The section may be superseded by the rules of the National Convention if required.

Section 7.13

The Platform adopted at the first Annual Convention of the Party shall remain the Platform of the Party thereafter, except additional planks may be included thereafter by a three-fourth (3/4) vote. The deletion of an existing plank may be done by a simple majority vote.

Article VIII: Open Party Meetings

Section 8.01. All conventions and meetings of the Party, its State Executive Council, and any committees shall be open to the attendance of both the general public and any representative of the press. This shall not be construed to give any person the right to participate, unless they have fulfilled all other requirements for participation as set forth herein.

Article IX: Public Statements

Section 9.01. Party officials asked to comment on issues or events shall not be restrained or restricted from speaking their opinion with the disclaimer that their statements may not reflect the official opinion of the Party.

Article X: Financial and Fiscal Affairs

Section 10.01

The State Executive Council shall conduct the financial and fiscal affairs of the Party as it deems necessary or as required by law.

Section 10.02

No person acting in his capacity as a member, official, or employee of the Party shall accept any money contribution or any other thing of value, except for labor services voluntarily donated, without tendering a receipt for the contribution showing the source and date of transfer. However, money received by the Party from mass collections of cash, or from anonymous sources, shall be accepted, provided the person taking possession of such monies shall execute an affidavit declaring that he has no knowledge of the identity of the contributor. Any member, official, or employee of the Party who shall be convicted of executing a false affidavit in this regard shall be immediately expelled from the Party by the State Executive Council or their employment terminated. Any person expelled or terminated under this provision shall be barred from participation in Party affairs for a period set by the State Executive Council, not to exceed seven (7) years.

Section 10.03 -Emergency Management of Party Funds

The State Chairperson and State Treasurer, jointly, shall have authority to immediately withdraw any and all Party funds from deposit in any financial institution, if, in their opinion, those funds are in jeopardy for any reason. In the event they shall disagree, State Executive Council shall be consulted and its decision shall be final. In the event it becomes necessary to withdraw such funds, they shall immediately be converted to cash or precious metals at the best rate obtainable and in whichever form or portion shall be deemed prudent in an institution believed to be more securing in the opinion of the State Chairperson and the State Treasurer. Whenever the State Chairperson and the State Treasurer believe it necessary to invoke the emergency management authority provided herein, they shall immediately notify the State Executive Council and request that the Chairperson, and as many members as may be able, accompany the State Chairperson and the State Treasurer to witness all transactions involved, copy necessary documents and records, and monitor all actions taken by the two officers pursuant to this section of the Bylaws. The two officers shall be authorized to make such expenditures as are necessary to safeguard the funds or assets of the Party pursuant to this section. In no event shall funds or assets of the Party be transferred or conveyed from within the boundaries of the forty-eight (48) contiguous states of the United States. The State Executive Council shall establish such standing rules (not in conflict with this section) to affect the expeditious discharge of the duties imposed herein as they shall deem necessary.

Article XI: Administration

Section 11.01

The State Executive Council shall perform the administration of the Party as needed or as required by state law.

Section 11.02

The State Executive Council may contract for the services of a State Executive Director for a period not to exceed two (2) years, unless renewed at a regularly scheduled meeting of the council. In no event shall such contract extend for a period exceeding twenty-six (26) calendar months at any time.

Section 11.03

Any contract for services shall stipulate that the Executive Director shall receive instructions and approval for activities from the State Executive Council through the State Chair; and, that the contract shall further stipulate that it can be terminated by a majority vote of the State Executive Council at any meeting and effective thirty (30) days thereafter.

Section 11.04

Neither the State Executive Council nor any subordinate organ or officer of the Party shall have the authority to bind the Party in any contract, lease, or agreement for a period which exceeds thirty-seven (37) months, except in matters relating to suits at law in which the Party is itself a party.

Section 11.05

Voter registration information and Membership information in whatever form or media shall be the property of the Party and the State Executive Council shall adopt standing rules providing for its custody, security, and utilization.

Article XII: Local Organizations

Section 12.01

Members of the Party may, if they see fit, meet and establish a Local Party Organization to engage in Party activities at the local level, so long as the activities are not inconsistent with the State Bylaws or the Party Platform.

Section 12.02

The Bylaws of the Local Organization must contain provisions allowing the State Party Chairperson and the State Treasurer, access to Local Organization records upon reasonable notice.

Article XIII: Affiliated Organizations

Section 13.01

Members of the Party in good standing and residing within the State of Oklahoma may, if they see fit, meet and establish such organizations to engage in political activities as are not inconsistent with these Bylaws, the Statement of Principles, or the Bylaws of any existing Party Organization.

Section 13.02

Any group in the State of Oklahoma, which purports to represent the Party, must obtain a Charter from the State Executive Committee, which shall be issued only by majority vote of the entire Committee. Such Charter shall be valid thereafter until amended by majority vote of the State Executive Committee, revoked by two-thirds (2/3) vote of the entire Committee, or three-fourths (3/4) vote of a State Convention; except that both the initial granting and/or subsequent revocation of a Charter shall be subject to approval by a majority vote of the State Convention.

Article XIV: Amendments

Section 14.01

These Bylaws may be amended by a two-thirds (2/3) majority vote of the member-delegates at any duly called Convention, except that Section 7.13 and this Section shall require a three-fourths (3/4) majority to amend.

Section 14.02

Amendments to these Bylaws shall become effective immediately upon adoption by a Convention. The State Executive Council shall make these Bylaws available on the website or in a printed version upon request to any Party Member.

Section 14.03

These Bylaws may only be amended by vote of the delegates at a State Convention.

Section 14.04

In addition to amendments proposed by the Rules Committee of any Convention, proposed amendments to these Bylaws shall be considered at any State Convention only by either of the following methods: (a) One-fifth (1/5) or more members of the State Executive Council may submit proposed amendments directly to the convention, provided a brief statement of each proposal is enclosed in the Call to Convention. (b) Ten (10) or more delegates of a State Convention may submit proposed amendments which shall be included in the report of the Rules Committee, with or without recommendation by that committee, provided said proposed amendments shall be submitted in writing to the Secretary of the Party not less than five (5) days preceding a State Convention. The State Secretary shall promptly refer such proposed amendments to the Chairperson of the Rules Committee for that Convention.

Section 14.05

No amendment to these Bylaws shall change the status of any person at a State Convention, for the duration of that State Convention. Also, no amendment, in any event, shall invalidate action properly taken under previous Bylaws.

Article XV: Parliamentary Authority

Section 15.01. The Rules contained in the current edition of ROBERT’S RULES OF ORDER, NEWLY REVISED, shall govern parliamentary procedure in all conventions, caucuses, meetings, and convention committees in all cases to which they are applicable and in which they are not in conflict with these Bylaws and any special rules or order the Party may adopt.

Article XVI: Adoption

Section 16.01. These Bylaws shall go into effect upon being adopted by simple majority vote of the registered participants present and voting at the 197