Friday, 24 August 2012 16:42

RNC Continues to Undo Ron Paul Delegate Wins, This Time in Maine

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The Republican National Committee tentatively ruled to strip Texas Congressman Ron Paul of half of his Maine delegates to the Tampa national convention next week. 

Paul came in a close second to Romney in the February/March county caucuses (the vote difference was less than 200 votes, less than two percent of the total), but Paul supporters were able to organize and gain the upper hand in the May state party convention that actually selected the delegates. Paul supporters won all 20 of the conventions' delegates on narrow votes, though Maine will also send four at-large delegates to the convention that include the governor and a few other senior elected officials. 

Ron Paul supporters told the Portland Press Herald August 24 that their position was: "No compromise, no deal." Paul supporters are appealing the decision with the GOP's Committee on Contests. Ron Paul supporters who took over state conventions in Louisiana and Massachusetts agreed to compromises with the Republican National Committee earlier this month, resulting in denial of their plurality of delegates.  

The RNC has produced a 26-page report on the Maine state convention that the Bangor Daily News described as “scathing” about irregularities at the convention, but it's unclear if the report details any actual party rules being broken. Some Romney supporters charged at the Maine state convention that GOP officials had not properly counted votes or credentialed delegates.

Maine Governor Paul LePage has threatened in a spokesman's Facebook statement not to attend the Tampa Convention if the Paul-aligned delegates are not credentialed in Tampa. LePage and his spokesman are both Romney supporters, but believe the convention was properly conducted. After the Maine state GOP convention in May, State Chairman Charlie Webster told the press that he was unaware of any rules that were broken by the convention. “I'm not aware of anything like that at all,” Webster told a local television station back in May. “We're going to fight to get our delegates seated in Tampa, that's our position. That's what we're ready to do.”

“Over 2500 duly elected Maine Republican delegates went to Augusta and we had a democratic election,” incoming National Committeewoman for Maine Ashley Ryan complained on a Paul-aligned website. “The RNC and the Mitt Romney Campaign cannot invalidate Maine’s voice simply because they didn’t like the outcome.”

Despite the back-room delegate wrangling, the Tampa GOP confab will toss a bouquet or two to the elder Paul, though he is not scheduled to speak at the GOP convention. Congressman Paul's son, Kentucky's junior U.S. Senator Rand Paul, is scheduled to address the convention Monday. The convention will also feature a video tribute to the retiring elder Paul on Tuesday. As in 2008, Paul is hosting his own Tampa convention across town from the RNC convention. 

Regardless of the outcome of the Maine dispute, former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney is expected to win the nomination. The Romney campaign has been able to select about three quarters of the delegates expected to attend the Tampa convention next week.

Photo: The Tampa Bay Times Forum, lower, right, the site of the 2012 Republican National Convention: AP Images

 

5 comments

  • Comment Link REMant Sunday, 26 August 2012 20:20 posted by REMant

    The issue is really whether a "democratic election" has any place at all in a republic.

  • Comment Link kuudbe Sunday, 26 August 2012 02:59 posted by kuudbe

    Is it a pretty safe bet that Obama will win Maine?

  • Comment Link Ken E Friday, 24 August 2012 23:27 posted by Ken E

    In November, vote your conscience, not the odds.

  • Comment Link GD Chapman Friday, 24 August 2012 19:21 posted by GD Chapman

    Now that the RNC has officially changed its own Plurality Requirement from 5 states to 8 states, thereby denying RP any chance of being nominated, this organization has demonstrated its contempt for the American People... and, interesting, the Constitution provides no mention of the need for any Political Party.... no say anything of one obfuscating the will of the American People.

  • Comment Link Connie Guest Friday, 24 August 2012 17:48 posted by Connie Guest

    Could someone explain to me how the RNC can get away with these corrupt activities? I mean, I totally understand why they're scared of Ron Paul, but to carry their corruption and deceit to this level? How do they sleep at night? We love Ron Paul and pray something happens to upset the RNC's plans and Paul HAS TO BE called to the convention because there's nothing anyone can do to stop the avalanche. That would be fantastic!!! If that man ever gets into the WH, look out liberals!!!! :D

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