Thursday, February 26, 2015

Chairman McCutchin Puts Tulsa GOP In Racial Scandal

NAACP Charges Discrimination By Tulsa GOP

  Oklahoma NAACP President, Anthony Douglas, Wednesday, charged the Tulsa GOP with gross discriminatory practices which disenfranchised massive districts of north Tulsa. We are including the original press release information of the NAACP complaint. It was posted on the Oklahoma NAACP Facebook site.

Oklahoma State NAACP Calls for Meeting

 with The Leadership of Tulsa Grand Old Party
NAACP President,
Anthony Douglas
Here is the text of the NAACP Statement:
 The Oklahoma State Conference, National Association for the Advancement of Colored People calls for meeting with Leadership of the Tulsa Grand Old Party “(GOP)”, concerning disenfranchises of African American as Precincts Officers. The Tulsa GOP is now making apolicy of excluding any precinct who defies this abusive and discriminatory policy, said Anthony R. Douglas, President Oklahoma State Conference, NAACP.
  On December 15, 2014, the Tulsa County Republican Executive Committee voted to order every precinct to move their neighborhood meetings to one central location in each State House District, or a reasonable distance of travel. According to Tulsa GOP Chairman, Michael McCutchin, any North Tulsa Precincts chosen a neighborhood location that disadvantaged citizens could walk to and feel safe & comfortably received in, would be banished from the county convention as a punishment for exercising their precinct's will.
  The entire region of northern Tulsa was denied a central location. Instead, urban north Tulsa was told to attend their neighborhood precinct meeting by traveling to East Tulsa and meet at Nathan Hale Library, near 21st St. & Sheridan Road, for the January 31st 10:00am meeting. The County GOP Chairman is the only one that will choose the specific locations and sent out the official call to the party on January 10th and advertised the list of locations. The list of approved locations that the Tulsa GOP chairman selected and published, such as Rural Collinsville does not link in to the public transit network of Tulsa's bus routes and it does indeed pose both a cultural and linear expanse which further disenfranchises the vastly African-American base of voters in HD 73. The list of approved locations that the Tulsa GOP chairman selected will alienate minority voters from becoming precinct officers. Having to travel great distances to unfamiliar towns outside of their house district and meet with people who are not their neighbor’s gives rise to voter power transfers to elite GOP members.
Tulsa County's House Districts
  Today, voter suppression also takes many forms, including attacks on early and Sunday voting to make voting harder for working people, photo ID requirements for voting and registration that introduce the first financial barrier to voting since the poll taxes, said Douglas.
  Tulsa GOP Chairman McCutchin has called for the Tulsa GOP Executive Committee to meet on February 27th, at Martin East Regional Library (6:30pm), to invalidate any precinct who did not meet where his official call did authorize. This action violates Tulsa GOP Executive Committee directive, and it added great disinformation to voters who were previously informed to travel to Nathan Hale Library, in East Tulsa.
  We have known for a long time, of the Congressional record detailing similar tactics employed over the years in covered jurisdictions to dilute or deny African Americans’ right to vote and participate in the process.
  Tulsa County GOP General Counsel, Terry Simonson has urged the GOP Executive Committee to rule that the violating precincts are invalid to participate in the County Convention on March 7th. Oklahoma precincts are established as organizational boundaries but are not mandated to establish meeting areas. There are no rules to decide where to have precinct meetings. Each party is responsible for organizing meeting locations for precincts for the purpose of electing precinct officers, said Douglas.
    Today, the target is the voting rights of Black voters, Latino voters, Asian American Voters, Native American Voters, as well as students and young people, seniors, working men and women, and immigrants of all colors. Only recently, the United States Supreme Court observed:“[s]till, racial discrimination and racially polarized voting are not ancient history. Much remains to be done to ensure that citizens of all races have equal opportunity to share and participate in our democratic processes and traditions.” Oklahoma State Conference, NAACP calls on the Oklahoma Grand Old Republican Party to stand with us in this important aspect of citizenship. Too many have sacrificed their time, resources, and, in some cases, their lives to secure the right to vote for us to allow misguided politicians to enact discriminatory voting laws designed to block eligible voters from the ballot box. We urge the Tulsa GOP to remedy their gerrymandering ways and make efforts to give the African-American voters a full opportunity to choose whether to be involved in the GOP, said Douglas.

  I do not agree with all the statements and positions of the NAACP, but the heart of this charge is not only true, but even worse! The House District 73 voters were told the official location on the Chairman's "CALL TO CONVENTION". But he quietly moved the location another 15 miles away from East Tulsa, to Rural Collinsville.
 Many people are notified of these meetings through coworkers, fellow parishioners, relatives, and other social contacts. But since McCutchin never sent a 2nd edited post with changes;out to the hundreds who received the first email,  he essentially disenfranchised massive numbers of would-be delegates and precinct committee members.
Tulsa GOP Chairman, Michael McCutchin
  The past two years have become a major setback for the Tulsa County GOP, as a grassroots organization of citizens. Sadly, there are political operatives who are okay with that.
  The Governing body of the Tulsa GOP is the Tulsa County Committee, But chairman McCutchin has completely disbanded it and has essentially ruled as a dictator; rarely consulting even with his hand-picked County Executive Committee (which has very little organizational power).
  McCutchin has waffled, vacillated, and contradicted himself repeatedly. He has broken several state GOP rules and declared them to be in error because they do not support his common practices.
  The NAACP press release also incorrectly dates a meeting as scheduled for February 27th, but it is being held on February 26th, at Martin East Regional Library, at 6:45pm.
  My hope & prayer is that proper order, management, and vision returns to the Tulsa County GOP.

David Van Risseghem


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