Here is the short decision of the Oklahoma State Supreme Court in Lawhorn v Ziriax, 2012 OK 78. The decision implies, but not does explicitly say, that qualified parties in Oklahoma cannot nominate presidential electors unless their party holds a national convention. This is based on an incidental part of the election law that says presidential elector candidates must take an oath to support the candidate chosen at that party’s national convention.
The irony of this interpretation is that even if Americans Elect had gone ahead with its original plans, it never planned to nominate a presidential or vice-presidential candidate at a national convention. Instead, the party expected to nominate via an on-line vote of any registered voter in the nation who wished to participate.
The decision also mentions that the national Americans Elect rules do not authorize any state party organizations, which implicitly seems to say that the national rules of the Americans Elect Party take precedence over Oklahoma state election laws, which give state parties the authority to choose presidential elector candidates. Yet in 2000, the last year the Libertarian Party was a qualified party in Oklahoma, the Libertarians passed a bylaw saying all registered voters could vote in the Oklahoma Libertarian primary. The party said it had a First Amendment Freedom of Association right to decide for itself how to run its nomination process. The party actually won that case in the 10th circuit, but Oklahoma appealed the decision to the U.S. Supreme Court, and the U.S. Supreme Court reversed, holding that the Libertarian Party did not have a constitutional right to invite all voters to vote in its primary. Yet now, Oklahoma’s highest state court seems to be saying that national party rules can supersede not only state election law, but the wishes of party members in the state. A majority of registered members of Americans Elect had participated in the nomination of Gary Johnson for president.
The decision mentions that national leaders of Americans Elect have a trademark on the name. The decision therefore implies, but does not say, that trademarks for political parties can overcome state election law. There is no authority for that idea in any other reported decision, and the 9th circuit ruled last year that trademarks for political party names cannot be used to overcome state election laws.