The 2018 election season is underway starting with the filing period for Osages interested in running for Executive Branch office.
On Day One (Dec. 5) of the month-long filing period, four Osage Nation elected officials filed for candidacy to run for Principal Chief and Assistant Principal Chief in the 2018 election year. A primary election will be held April 2 if more than two candidates file for candidacy in the Executive Branch office races, but if only two candidates run for office, then no primary election will be held and those candidates will appear on the June 4 general election ballot, according to the ON election code.
ON Congressman Otto Hamilton filed to run for Assistant Principal Chief first that day at 9:30 a.m. Principal Chief Geoffrey Standing Bear filed second at 10:40 a.m. to run for a second consecutive term. Congresswoman Maria Whitehorn is also running for Principal Chief and filed third at 2 p.m. Assistant Principal Chief Raymond Red Corn filed fourth at 2:40 p.m. and is seeking a second consecutive term.
Osages interested in running for Principal Chief and Assistant Principal Chief offices may apply for candidacy with the Osage Nation Election Office during office hours through Jan. 8. The Election Office is at 608 Kihekah Ave. in Pawhuska and can be reached at (918) 287-5286. During the filing period, the Nation’s government operations will be closed Dec. 25-26 for the Christmas holiday and Jan. 1 for New Year’s Day.
According to the Osage Constitution: “Enrolled members of the Osage Nation, who are at least 35 years of age on that date of the election, who have never been convicted of a felony, are eligible to become a candidate for the office of Principal Chief.” The Constitution also states: “The Principal Chief shall not hold any other office or position of profit under the Osage Nation nor any office, be it elected or appointed, under any other tribal government, or state, county or federal government.”
For the Office of Assistant Principal Chief, the Constitution states that office “shall have the same qualifications as the Principal Chief and serve for the same term and in the same manner… The Assistant Principal Chief shall perform such duties as may be prescribed by Osage law and as may be delegated by the Principal Chief. The Assistant Principal Chief, shall, by virtue of his office, be an ex-officio member of the Osage Nation Congress and shall have a right, when in committee-of-the-whole, to join in debate; and, whenever the legislature shall be equally divided, the Assistant Principal Chief shall cast the deciding vote.”
All candidates will also be provided copies of election-related forms, a timeline of important dates, events and deadlines and copies of the Nation’s election code and election rules and regulations.
The filing fee to run for ON elected office is due when filing in-person at the ON Election Office, which is: $500 for Principal Chief candidates and $400 for Assistant Principal Chief candidates and can be in the form of a cashier’s check or money order. Candidates will also be required to provide proof of establishing a separate bank account in the name of the candidate or candidate’s campaign upon filing. All candidates will be required to provide two financial reports documenting all campaign expenditures and donations, including the candidate’s personal funds used for campaign purposes, according to the election rules and regulations.
The ON Election Office website also contains other forms and information on the 2018 election including address update forms, absentee ballot request forms and information on the privacy program regarding voter information listed on the voter registry list. The website is at: www.osagenation-nsn.gov/what-we-do/elections