By simply holding $SUMA, even if staked in the native token earnings pool or SUMA Maxi vault, a user earns the right to create proposals and vote in them. Voting sway and power are derived from the $SUMA holdings of the participant. The reasoning behind this follows that those holding more $SUMA are more invested in the project, and therefore have a larger incentive for the platform itself to succeed and prosper.
Voting requires you to hold $SUMA, which can either simply be held in your wallet or staked in the native token earnings pool or SUMA Maxi vaults. You do not need to remove your stake either to vote. Voting power is based directly on the amount of $SUMA each voter holds.