Posts tagged GOP Convention
“How Ron Paul’s Minions Plan to Hijack the GOP Convention”
Ron Paul is orchestrating a highly unusual, yet precisely organized, grassroots effort to bring as many loyal delegates as possible to the Republican National Convention. Romney’s campaign has some mass appeal but invites little passion. Paul’s might have even fewer supporters than Romney but their energetic zeal could culminate in having an outsize influence at the RNC without having won a single primary.
Each state selects its delegates to the Republican National Convention differently, and as has often been reported, the process of a candidate “winning a state” is not as simple as a plurality on primary day. An obscure process of country, district, and state conventions exists to appoint these delegates to the national convention. A candidate who can successfully manipulate these lesser known “behind-the-scenes” processes can put himself in an advantageous position should the Convention begin in August with some doubt about the identity of the nominee.
Focusing on one Super Tuesday state, Georgia, this process began with “mass precinct meetings” on February 18th to select delegates to the county conventions. After the March 6 primary, Georgia’s 159 county conventions take place March 10. These will elect delegates to the district conventions scheduled for April 14. While some at-large delegates emerge from the state convention, most are selected at Georgia’s thirteen district conventions. Ideally, the Paul campaign would like for its supporters to compose 51% of the attendees at each district convention so that its supporters can make motions, control the proceedings, and make sure its supporters get nominated as delegates to the national convention.
The Paul campaign has rigorously organized its volunteers to attend the mass precinct meetings that took place all over Georgia. It has been instructing supporters on parliamentary procedure and state Republican rules. It is also giving advice on convention etiquette. In an e-mail to supporters, Charles Gregory, Georgia State Coordinator for Ron Paul 2012, wrote:
“It is my personal recommendation that you dress professionally and not overtly identify yourself as a Ron Paul supporter. Your position should simply be: “I’m here to send Obama home, that’s all I care about.” If asked who you support—just say you ‘haven’t made up your mind yet but they’re all better than what we’ve got now,’ etc.”
I myself attended a similar precinct meeting in 2008. Most of the speeches were about uniting the Party around the eventual nominee and there was relatively little conflict, and I easily got my name on the slate of delegates to the county, district, and state conventions.
The most recent meetings held in Georgia have not been like this at all.