July 31st, 2012
(HigginsBlog) – Ron Paul delegates are fighting their disqualification by GOP establishment leaders for refusing to sign a pledge to support Mitt Romney in Tampa.
Republican party leaders seized the power of the people to nominate presidential candidates through popular and fair votes when they disqualified popular elected delegates nationwide who refused to sign affidavits pledging their support for Romney at the Republic National Convention in Tampa Bay Florida next month.
The dangerous new precedent of which concentrates the power to choose presidential nominees into the hands of a few powerful party leaders marks the beginning of a sad chapter in America’s history.
The elected delegates aren’t going down without a fight however futile that fight may be.
From The Daily Paul:
Ron Paul delegates fight GOP on ouster
The saga of the Massachusetts delegates continues. The picture used by the globe is so bad I had to chuckle.
The group of delegates — originally supporters of Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul — were elected in April caucuses at which they unexpectedly defeated many of Mitt Romney’s chosen delegates, but they have been since disqualified by state party officials [for refusing to sign an affidavit pleding their support for Mitt Romney].
Sixteen Republicans elected to represent Massachusetts at the national convention in Tampa next month have filed a formal challenge with the Republican National Committee, saying they were unfairly disqualified based on state GOP leaders’ concerns about their fealty to presumptive presidential nominee Mitt Romney.
The group of delegates — originally supporters of Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul — were elected in April caucuses at which they unexpectedly defeated many of Romney’s chosen delegates, but they have been since disqualified by state party officials.
“In short, the Massachusetts Republican Party changed the rules,” the delegates wrote in a letter to the national committee.
The filing sets off a formal but uphill process for the would-be delegates, who hope to convince national party officials that they are being unfairly excluded from the Republican National Convention, to be held Aug. 27-30 in Tampa. An RNC committee is expected to consider the challenge by mid-August, but the party is not expected to make a decision until the week before the convention.
Any appeal to that decision could be considered by the convention’s credentials committee when the event begins.
The legal counsel for the Republican National Committee could not be reached on Friday and a committee spokeswoman declined to comment. A spokesman for the Massachusetts Republican Party referred calls to the RNC.
“This matter is currently before the RNC and we await their decision,” spokesman Tim Buckley said.
In their letter, the so-called liberty delegates say they were duly elected in April, but disqualified after failing to provide timely affidavits pledging their support to Romney. They argue that the affidavits were not called for in state or federal rules and they received them “less than one week before an arbitrary deadline” to return them notarized — during the Memorial Day weekend.
Some met the deadline, but others missed it and many filed a different version of the affidavit, promising only to follow the state’s rules, rather than pledging their support to Romney by name.
As a result, the state GOP decided there was just cause to disqualify the group of delegates. They replaced the elected delegates with 16 others, some of whom had been defeated at the caucuses and others who had not run, according to the challenge, leading liberty candidates to cry foul.
One national Republican leader familiar with the challenge said he believes that the Paul supporters do not intend to support Romney, but to make mischief at the convention, as evidenced by their unwillingness to provide affidavits pledging their support.
Source: The Daily Paul
The article has since been updated with a link to press release from Massachusetts Caucus giving more details on their plight:
RNC Committee on Contests
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Sixteen Massachusetts Duly Elected Delegates and Alternates to the Republican National Convention formally file challenges to the RNC.
Worcester, MA, 7/27/12 — Sixteen democratically elected Liberty Caucus delegates/alternates to the Republican National Convention that had been decertified by the Massachusetts Republican Party have formally filed a challenge with the Republican National Committee. These sixteen Liberty delegates were duly elected at Republican Congressional Caucuses held around the state on April 28th, 2012, defeating powerful establishment Republicans such as House Minority Leader Bradley Jones, former Lt. Gov. Kerry Healey and Sheriff Frank Cousins. In a letter dated June 14th, 2012, the MassGOP’s Delegate Allocation Committee ignored all other evidence, and ‘unanimously concluded’ that these sixteen delegates would not honor State Law and Republican Party rules, and refused to certify them. Fact: The duly elected delegates and alternates had pledged to follow Massachusetts law and Republican Party rules, stood for election as “Romney delegates,” and even had signed affidavits to attest to this, but were nonetheless purged.
These sixteen duly elected Liberty delegates wanted to participate in the Republican National Convention to promote three platform issues, specifically Auditing the Federal Reserve Bank, Requiring Congressional Declaration of War for Funding Wars, and Protecting Internet Freedom.
Bradford Wyatt thanked Jesse Benton, the Ron Paul campaign chairman, and his expert political team, for their instrumental assistance in guiding the decertified Massachusetts Liberty delegates through the intricate challenge process. Mr. Wyatt said “I’m a small business owner, not a political or legal expert, and navigating the process to file a challenge with the RNC is not a simple task. Jesse Benton and his staff really stepped up, and helped the Liberty delegates effectively focus our efforts on properly building the legal challenge to address this unlawful decertification”
The sixteen decertified delegates, that campaigned, and democratically won election, are hopeful for a positive decision to reverse the cronyism infecting the leadership of the Massachusetts Republican Party. The Republican National Committee, Committee on Challenges is chaired by Mike Duncan, former RNC Chairman and National Committeeman for Kentucky.
This is not the first time the Massachusetts Republican Party has acted unfairly. The Credentials Committee of the 2000 Republican National Convention in Philadelphia admonished the Massachusetts Republican party to stop purging duly elected delegates:
“Whereas the Republican National Convention’s Committee on Credentials has had to repeatedly answer contests to delegates from Massachusetts because of their peculiar manner of selection that seems to promote cronyism and defeat democratic elections, the Committee on Credentials urges the Massachusetts State Committee to reconsider Rule 4.7 [now Rule 5.2] which allows the winning Presidential Candidate’s State Committee to certify delegates and alternate delegates pledged to its candidate.”
Copies of the actual challenges sent to the RNC’s Committee on Contests, along with other source documents, may be found online at http://www.malibertycaucus.com/rnc-committee-on-contests . The detailed ‘Statement of Position’ with more affidavits and other source documents will be filed the first week of August.
The entire Liberty Caucus is looking forward to unifying the party and representing Massachusetts at the RNC in Tampa on August 26-30th. The unjust manipulation of rules by just a few high level officials at the MassGOP has only strengthened the resolve of more grassroots Republicans to get involved and take a more active role in the political process.
Massachusetts Liberty Caucus
Source: MA Liberty Caucus
Source: Higgins Blog