Republican Presidential candidate Congressman Ron Paul tries to speak at the Minnesota State Republican Convention – and is denied. His supporters react and discuss their strategy for winning delegates to the National Republican Convention. Ron Paul’s Minnesota coordinator said Paul is picking up supporters who are sympathetic because of the “less than savory tactics” MN GOP Chair Ron Carey is using against Ron Paul and his supporters.
UPDATE: The rules here are constructed to force delegates to vote for the “party establishment” slate if they want their vote to count.
* No nominations from the floor are allowed.
* If you do not vote for 14 delegates, thus filling the slate, none of your other votes are counted. So if you only find 13 delegates acceptable: too bad, those votes don’t count
* The Nominations Committee put into contention less than double the spots open – thus any acceptable ballot will have several of the “establishment” slate names on it – otherwise it would fall under the 14 delegate threshold and be considered spoiled.
We have asked for comment by the Republican Party several times. As of 4:40PM they have declined all our requests and have not indicated any time which they will be available to answer questions or comment on this issue.
UPDATE 4:42PM: A delegate who screened for the National Delegate Slate accuses the Republican Party of lying. He was told that “screening by telephone was unequivocally unacceptable”. However, the Chair of the Nominations Committee just admitted to the entire delegation some of the names on the Party’s slate did indeed screen by phone and did not appear in person, as according to their interpretation of the rules. Response is that the Chair of the Convention has been running a highly disorganized agenda and should be exerting her power to prevent these complaints. The original complaint is ruled out of order and ignored.
My analysis is that the Nominations Committee is clearly operating in violation of the approved rules as I have them. Rule 25, a: “Individuals wishing to be considered for the position of National Delegate or Alternate must meet with the nominating committee in Rochester, Minnesota on Thursday, May 29th, 2008.” Emphasis added. The delegation was just told point blank that this rule was violated. However, there will be no re-vote despite the violation of the rules. This means the delegate slate did not reflect possible qualified candidates who could not make it to Rochester.
We will ask the Republican Party, yet again, for clarification or comment.
UPDATE 5:04 PM: Convention Center just got hit by 7 minutes of heavy hail. Sheets of it. Gumball to golf ball sized. Party communications staff are occupied with Sen. Coleman giving an interview to KTTC. I was told they might have time later.
UPDATE 5:13 PM: National Delegates have been selected. The majority of the party establishment delegate slate was selected. This includes, out of 14 delegate slots:
* Gov. Tim Pawlenty
* Senator Norm Coleman
* Minnesota House Republican Minority Leader Marty Seifert
* Michael Brodkorb, Republican Operative Blogger
Several establishment delegates were rejected: Brandon Sawalich, Jerry Paar and Diane Johnson. The sole Ron Paul Delegate Nominee, Mariane Stebbins was also rejected.
UPDATE 5:44 PM: The current MN GOP Constitution says “That the lawful definition of a ‘Human Being’ shall be: ‘When the DNA (Deoxyibonucleic Avid) of Mankind is joined’.” This language is so wrong it’s hard to begin. Thankfully, they’re trying to strike that language now.