GOP Bosses Offer Olive Branch to Avert Floor Fight

GOP bosses offered a late night olive branch to delegates to avert a floor fight this morning at the RNC Convention. Romney supporters and GOP leaders agreed to back down from a proposed rule change that would have allowed presidential nominees to choose the delegates they want at national conventions. reported:

The GOP bosses offered an olive branch to delegates in late night sessions Monday to avert a floor fight on changing the party rules.

Republican leaders moved Monday to quell an uprising by Texans and Ron Paul supporters that threatened to steal the spotlight from GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney and expose rifts in the party right as its nominating convention got under way.

Under a compromise reached late Monday, Romney supporters and GOP leaders agreed to back down from a proposed rule change that effectively would have allowed presidential nominees to choose what delegates represent them at national conventions.

The proposed change was aimed at muting the power of insurgent candidates such as Tea Party favorite Ron Paul but prompted an uproar from Texas Republicans, who select their delegates through successive votes in conventions at precincts, then districts and finally statewide.

Butch Davis, a member of the RNC Rules Committee who fought off the proposal, said the existing Texas system often elevates grassroots activists and party faithful toiling in the trenches, but the proposed change would have instead allowed GOP leaders and presidential candidates to hand-select delegates and reward donors with delegate spots.

“We believe in Texas as a principle that no presidential candidate nor the RNC should be able to tell Texas who can or cannot be a delegate to the national convention,” Davis said.

“This isn’t Reagan versus Ford, Goldwater versus Rockefeller,” Davis added. “This is George Washington versus King George.”

And Texas Republican Vice Chairwoman Melinda Fredricks had flatly told RNC rules committee members Sunday night that the Lone Star State would stand its ground…

…In an e-mail obtained by Hearst Newspapers (available below), Republicans who led the fight against the proposed change said the GOP leaders “heard the concerns of the conservative grassroots voices in our party” and amended their proposal.

“This will allow Republicans of all stripes to come to the convention united and focused on defeating Barack Obama in November,” they said.

Under the deal, delegates who are bound to a presidential candidate that hasn’t bowed out of the race or released them to vote for another contender are barred from casting a vote for a different person. During this convention, the change effectively would mean a delegate bound to Mitt Romney could not instead opt to throw his or her support behind Ron Paul, who has not freed his delegates.

Hat Tip Meg

Steve Deace has more on this controversy.

Michelle Malkin is all over the story with several updates.

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  • Davis

    Ron Paul is not a TEA Party favorite.

  • Multitude

    “…Tea Party favorite Ron Paul” What the…?

    I’ve never, ever encountered Paul folks who identified themselves as the Tea Party, and every Tea Party event in our part of the Midwest was never a “Ron Paul and his Flying Circus” function. The Paulites have always been their own thing, more interested in foreign policy and economic isolationism.

    The proxy media will continually be surprised if they can’t even understand who’s who in grassroots politics.

  • Multitude

    Davis #1: I guess you too sprayed your coffee over your computer screen reading this nonsense. Jim ought to go find this person masquerading as a reporter and rough them up. Just tell ’em you’re a Elisabeth Warren hired thug giving them Democratic Party Chicago Treatment — they’ll understand.

  • hidelyheaux

    Ron Paul isn’t even a Libertarian, much LESS a TEA Party favorite! These nutbags are going to hand this election to Obama and I hope they rot in hell for it!

  • Kathy Mathews

    Ron Paul IS NOT a tea party candidate.

  • Jenny

    Ron Paul is NOT a Tea Party favorite !!

  • Granny

    If Ron Paul is part of the Tea Party then it is time to fish the Tea back out of Boston Harbor.

  • Multitude

    Just read Malkins updates… The Romney RINOs need to be told that a convention where the delegates are merely props selected by the elites to puppet only what the elites require isn’t a convention at all. Why waste the people’s time? You go off and do your Beltway smoke-filled LBJ inspired politics and we’ll start working on the replacement party.

    Think we’re not capable of a third party at this point? Don’t tread on us!

  • Ragspierre

    Ron Paul is a nasty old crank…who sometimes has an insight or two that should be heard.

    But mostly he’s a nasty old crank, who has run for president under a false flag for-freaking-ever, it seems.

    Thankfully, this cycle will be his last.

  • Jack

    Tea Party favorite? That’s news to me. Who is anyway?

  • Scott M.

    Ron Paul is not a Tea Party favorite. He SHOULD have been, but the Tea Party sold out to the establishment GOP to nominate a man who supported TARP, the bailouts, and the individual mandate. In other words, the Tea Party made themselves irrelevant by backing the wrong guy. What a disappointment.

  • Chip Bennett

    …Tea Party favorite Ron Paul…

    Does Not Compute.

    The real “Tea Party favorite” in Texas is Ted Cruz.

  • Valerie

    #11 August 28, 2012 at 8:40 am
    Scott M. commented:

    The TEA Parties did not back Ron Paul.

  • stonedome

    “Tea Party favorite Ron Paul” ? utter nonsense. he might be smoking some tea, but he’s a libertarian quack. the writer should be pelted with used, wet tea bags. don’t ever equate that man with conservatives like me.

  • Shelly

    ScottM: The tea party should have nothing to do with Paul. Besides Paul being a nutty old man, he is part of the establishment. He’s well known for getting amendments into bills for his pork that he knows will pass then votes against the bill so he can pretend how noble he is.
    Read this article and tell me the tea party should hook their wagon to him.

  • even steven

    As was already pointed out by others, Ron Paul is NOT a Tea Party favorite. The hack who wrote the article is out of touch at best.

  • Radegunda

    I read another take on this: that it’s designed to minimize the mischief of the Paulbots, after the mischief they did in states where they exploited certain rules to get delegates way out of proportion to the actual popular support for Paul. (Similar to the way Obama “won” caucuses.)
    There was much talk of how the Paulbots intended to stir things up at the convention — even though Paul clearly did not win the primaries, and when the focus now should be on beating Obama, not weakening the GOP candidate.

  • Ragspierre

    The Houston Carbuncle is a notoriously clueless Collectivist rag. No news here.

    They understand the TEA Party as well as a dog understands plane geometry.

  • Ragspierre

    The rule that allows the candidate to vet all delegates chosen at the state level to insure their loyalty is also simple common sense. One need only read this dispatch from Mary Grabar about delegates attending the GOP convention from Pennsylvania being members of the “Pennsylvania Working Families,” a front group for ACORN, to realize the efficacy of such a rule being in effect for the future. Opposition political activists have become adept at infiltrating GOP gatherings for several years and if state parties aren’t going to keep the enemy out of the convention, the national party must do it for them.

    Everybody should read this…

  • J

    UPDATE via Erick Erickson:

    The rule fight is not over. Two other rules are in process that would allow to squash dissent and reinstate the original power-grabbing rule: GOP Rules Committee Rapidly Moving to Shut Out Grassroots at 2:00 p.m. Today

    “…The first rule to be proposed is one that would give the Republican National Committee the power to change rules between conventions with a three-quarters vote of the RNC. One source tells me, “With a Republican President, of course this is doable. Everybody will roll over if a President Romney asks them too. They’ll be able to get Ben Ginsberg’s proposal next year….

    The second rules change would front load winner takes all primaries. Grassroots conservatives point to both Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum as reasons to stop this rule. Had there been front loaded winner takes all primaries, neither the Gingrich nor the Santorum campaigns would have been able to get any traction…”