You Used to Need Five States to Be Officially Put in Nomination for President at RNC. Ron Paul Gets Six. Rule Change! Now You Need Eight!

Remember all that brouhaha over Ron Paul needing five states to nominate him, according to the old "Rule 40"? Well, today six states (or entities with delegations) tried to nominate him--Nevada, Iowa, Oregon, Minnesota, Alaska and the Virgin Islands.

What happened then? A rule change was adopted saying you need eight. Sorry Ron!

The Las Vegas Sun and New York Times both reported on this. From the Sun:

Paul supporters, lead by Nevada delegate Wayne Terhune, succeeded in putting together petitions from six states to put Paul’s name up for nomination. But earlier this week, the Romney campaign won a critical rules change requiring eight states to put a candidate up for nomination.

At the last moment, Paul supporters handed the petitions to the convention secretary. Then, the convention voted to adopt the eight-state rule, crushing the Paul effort.**(see update II, below)

That's apparently why Paul's 190 or so votes, announced by various state leaders, were not announced from the podium to the convention assembled.

For the story of how Ron Paul got this far, see my book Ron Paul's Revolution: The Man and the Movement He Inspired.

UPDATE: Nevada's delegation leader talks about the six states in his "great state of Nevada" peroration on the floor as he announces 17 votes for Ron Paul (just five for Romney). Bound delegates, anyone? Note the secretary ignoring him as she refuses to announce the Paul votes:

UPDATE NUMBER TWO: Commenter Westmiller points out that both the New York Times and the Las Vegas Sun Times mislead their readers, including me, on the exact cause and effect of the rule change and refusal to nominate Paul, since the rule change from five to eight, which did happen, is not meant to go into effect until the next national convention. While rule change and denial of nomination both occurred, they are not directly causally connected. 

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  • db||

    Yay Republicans! Thatnks for validating my Gary Johnson vote!

  • Chloe||

    ^This x100

  • Pro Libertate||

    Yeppers.

  • Killazontherun||

    Gary Johnson, a choice, not a gecko.

  • AlmightyJB||

    :Thatnks for validating my Gary Johnson vote!"

    word bitch. Gary Johnson. Gary Johnson..... Gary Johson.

  • ||

    I would think a little action on the floor would be good for ratings.

  • VG Zaytsev||

    Agreed.

    This was move was pointless and self defeating.

  • ||

    Wow, they really think they don't need libertarians to win. Such hubris make me want Romney and the RNC to fall on their smug faces in spite of how awful Obama is. Way to go, two-party system, you've managed to make another election intolerable.

  • SIV||

    Hey, the GOP told movement conservatives and the Tea Party to fuck off and obey too so don't feel so special.

  • MWG||

    Meh. Look at t this way: Either Romney or Obama are going to lose in Nov., and now matter who it is, the juicy tears from the losing team are sure to not disappoint.

  • Matrix||

    no matter who wins, the rest of us lose.

  • Alan||

    Seems like the Republican Party is trying its best to self-destruct.

  • General Butt Naked||

    Both sides seem purposely inept this cycle.

    I think they know that the next few years are going to be a bitch and they don't wanna own 'em.

  • ||

    Obama's campaign is very competent.

    With the economy and his record Obama should be dead meat by now.

  • VG Zaytsev||

    What makes you think that he isn't?

    All of the polls that I've seen have Obama sitting around 45% with samples that are weighted to the dems by more than their 08 turnout.

    I'm starting to think the whole thing is a giant sham to keep interest up for the media and donations rolling in for the parties.

  • ||

    Don't get me wrong. Obama is going to lose. I know that.

    I am just surprised at how resilient his polls have been in the face of his terrible record and terrible economy.

    I'm starting to think the whole thing is a giant sham to keep interest up for the media and donations rolling in for the parties.

    Maybe it is the polling companies. Without a close race people are less willing to pay for their services. =)

  • ||

    Seems like the Republican Party is trying its best to self-destruct.

    They have not even begun to try.

    Just wait until Romney wins.

    You will see self destruction never seen in the history of histories!!!

  • Longtorso||

    My voter registration is good thru 2013, I can vote for Johnson.

  • DEATFBIRSECIA||

    But if Rand Paul grovels just a little bit more, maybe the RNC will come to their senses and realize they were pro liberty all along!

    Or maybe they'll just change the rules to where no one who had ever been named Paul could run.

  • Auric Demonocles||

    I really don't understand this at all. There is absolutely no danger to them of the Paul people pulling anything off and upstaging Romney. They change the rules and do all of these shenanigans to avoid literally no threat. They're just being petty and making themselves look bad, in the process pissing off some of the most active and dedicated people in their party.

  • Alan||

    Yup. There are a lot of Ron Paul people who wouldn't have stuck around anyway, but many more who would. This sort of treatment, however, is calculated to drive people away from the Republican Party - I expect even people who aren't Paul fans will be turned off by this blatant disregard for the rules.

    Of course, considering that Romney and Obama are being backed by the same donors, perhaps it makes no difference to those orchestrating this.

  • ||

    I really don't understand this at all.

    Republicans understand it even less....if they did they would not be doing what they are doing.

  • mnarayan||

    this * 100. Is there any even remotely practical reason for doing this?

  • Auric Demonocles||

    And I just watched the video. Did they hold tryouts looking for the shrillest female voices they could find?

  • Andrew S.||

    But the GOP only hits me because it loves me!

  • Couves||

    Since Paul clearly poses no threat to Romney, why is the party doing this? The best answer I can come up with is that they just don't want to give Paul the opportunity to speak to the convention (putting his name in nomination would allow him to speak). They're afraid that Paul will "light brushfires of freedom in the minds of men." This isn't about a fear that Paul will win here and now, but that his movement will gain momentum and unseat the establishment in the future. That would also explain why they're changing party rules to make the "delegate strategy" impossible for an insurgent candidate in the next election.

    I think the party is making a big mistake. This isn't going to make the Paul people go away, it will only energize them -- they're obviously not folks who allow themselves to be crushed by defeat.

  • Cytotoxic||

    Exactly. It is pivotal that Ronulans remain in the party. One can vote for Johnson and be a Ronulan Front GOP operative.

  • General Butt Naked||

    I disagree.

    I don't think they'd let him speak for the same reason that the Democrats wouldn't let Paul speak: He doesn't represent their views and is actively hostile to their big government intentions.

    Here's a guy who's anti-war, pro-legalized heroin, and would end crony capitalism if he could, and you think there's a gnat's left nut of a chance the GOP is going to give him the floor at their convention? You're crazy man.

  • Couves||

    General Naked: I agree. The mainstream of the party is absolutely opposed to Ron Paul and is doing everything it can to thwart him and stop any similar insurgents from giving them trouble in the future.

  • CE||

    But there is no "they". "They" are the delegates, and Ron Paul had about 200 of them apparently, and the RNC wants to pretend they didn't exist. If the Paul backers showed a surprising and uncomfortable organizational strength at state conventions, it's within the rights of the RNC to change the rules for next time. But you don't change the rules AFTER the game has started.

  • Drax the Destroyer||

    Changing the rules after is the action of a bunch of fucking pussies who are afraid of any dissenting views (face it, most of these pussies are afraid of dirt farmers on the other side of the planet). These assholes have been cheating the whole time so I'm not surprised they don't even want to acknowledge someone else may have crossed the finish line.

  • Homple||

    Ron Paul won't ignite anything except plenty of coverage in the mainstream press about how yet another gang of loonies is taking over the Republican party. Obama's media machine is whooping up Mormon spookiness, Tod Akin, Mrs. Romney's Horse, Ryan's grammacide, and Romney's ability to give your dog cancer by putting it on the roof of his car.

    Paul says some good things, but whatever he says will be yet another thing for the media to harp on and the Republicans don't need that.

  • General Butt Naked||

    Sooo...

    Is this the 'long game' a few peenlicks around here were talking about when Rand endorsed Romney. 'Cause this thing isn't looking tactically sound at all.

    And I laugh, yea and heartily so, at the assfucks who are surprised by this.

  • Cytotoxic||

    Is this the 'long game' a few peenlicks around here were talking about when Rand endorsed Romney.

    Probably. GOP cuntiness now dividends later.

  • General Butt Naked||

    No man, nothing later. Nothing at all.

    Unless you see erosion of liberty and a ballooning deficit as a something then, okay yes, something later.

  • Cytotoxic||

    I'm not going to bother with this conversation because it's clear to me you are one of the posters that loves misery and fatalism and bitching and moaning about it. How tedious.

  • General Butt Naked||

    Because I don't take your ass-brained theories that run counter to all history and evidence seriously I'm tedious?

    Seriously dude, if you can offer anything other than the muffled by GOP balls mumblings of an idiot, please, now would be the time to offer it up.

    You have nothing though; I'd actually be happy if you did, but you don't. If there was a major party making motions toward liberty I'd be ecstatic, but, again there is absolutely no evidence of that. Sorry.

  • Cytotoxic||

    "You don't heed my sad-sack call for despair, so you're a GOP stooge!"

    Yeah, that's basically the kind of lame adhom response I expected from you and would expect from the other Axis of Gliberty members. Have fun being sad.

    For real thinking, see Corning's comment below.

  • Enjoy Every Sandwich||

    One needn't be fatalistic to see clearly that following a given path isn't going to work. And it's quite clear that the path to liberty doesn't go through the GOP. So it's quite rational to abandon the GOP and try something else.

    You insist that instead we should be obstinately stupid and keep trying to drive the car with the square wheels. Why the fuck should we?

  • Cytotoxic||

    Better square wheels than no wheels. The GOP takeover is all we have and it's working.

  • ||

    Is this the 'long game'

    Yes. If Romney loses Rand Paul will get the nod in 2016.

    In 2020 Ryan will need a VP....of course the Republicans will have put on sneakers, cut off their dicks and dosed on cyanide by then...so who the fuck knows if it is worth it.

  • VG Zaytsev||

    Sooo...

    Is this the 'long game' a few peenlicks around here were talking about when Rand endorsed Romney. 'Cause this thing isn't looking tactically sound at all.

    This move was an intentionally offensive insult.

    But get real.

    Paul giving a speech at the Republican convention was never the result that anyone is working for. In fact, it's largely meaningless either way.

    Stop being a bunch of whiny ass bitches.
    The establishment hates you, is that a surprise?

    They have an irrational fear of you and your ideas. Does that mean that you are irrelevant or that you are winning the battle for hearts and minds?

    Stomping off in a sulk is exactly what they want you to do, isn't that obvious?

    Because a couple of more cycles like this one and we will be the majority, the establishment and that is what scares the hell out of them.

  • Cytotoxic||

    THISSITY THIS

    It's not like Ronulans lose anything by staying in the GOP. They can just vote Johnson, as they should.

  • Paul.||

    Remember, a vote for Gary Johnson is a vote for Gary Johnson.

  • ||

    If the Republicans keep it up we might even get John and Tulpa to vote for Johnson.

  • Paul.||

    *spits cranberry juice all over monitor*

    Not Tulpa. Never Tulpa. I'm not even sure I would respect Tulpa if he voted for Gay Jay. Not after articulating so well why Romney should be president.

  • ||

    study estimates in WA state (one of three states with a MJ legalization initiative on the ballot this year) cost the taxpayers of the state 200 million in the last decade. that's likely a conservative estimate (granted it also does not include revenue gained from civil forfeitures)

    ridiculous.

    the tax proposed with legalization would be STIFF. as a libertarian, i'm not a big fan of big taxes, but i'd rather see legal MJ taxed heavily than illegal mj

    Note the cop-o-crats oppose this legislation: "So far, I-502 has drawn no organized opposition except from within the medical marijuana community. However, the Washington Association of Sheriffs and Police Chiefs has adopted a resolution opposing it on the grounds that the drug is harmful and that legalizing it for adults would send the wrong message to children."

    keerist. the CHILDREN!!!!

    http://www.komonews.com/news/l.....24665.html

  • califernian||

    In California, the prison union and police union endorsed a no vote on legal marijuana last go around. A disgusting, cynical move that makes me hate them all.

  • califernian||

    I mean, why not endorse making everything a felony if your reasoning is that more prisoners is good for your union. GOddamn them. Goddamn them to hell.

  • ||

    as a police union member myself, i know that MY union has taken no stance on the legalization of MJ.

    i'm curious if any police unions in WA have taken a stance.

    i referred to the police chief/sheriff's as cop-o-crats. often, sheriff's/chiefs have very different viewpoints from "line" (real) cops, but not always

    i would agree that MANY of those union members who opposed legalization probably did so because they are philosophically opposed to same, whereas others may have done so because they thought it was better for THEM for it to remain illegal, although those two viewpoints may also be held at the same time (not mutually exclusive)

    california has, btw DECRIM'd possession of small amounts of MJ

  • VG Zaytsev||

    In California, the prison union and police union endorsed a no vote on legal marijuana last go around.

    One of the events that started me down the libertarian path was the CA prison guards union openly lobbying for longer prison sentences about a decade ago.

  • ||

    would send the wrong message to children.

    What happens to the kids when their parents go to jail?

    What happens to the kids when they are put in juvi.

  • Cytotoxic||

    Well clearly those kids are getting a great message. Their lives may be ruined, but dat message...

  • ||

    while i agree with the sentiment...

    fwiw, i CANNOT book a kid for possession OR sale of mj whether or not i want to.

    iow, it doesn't meet booking standards at the YSC (where cops in the greater seattle area book juvies). the worst i can do is issue a criminal cite and referral to court

    as a PRACTICAL matter, i cannot speak for WA state, but i can speak for my county.

    it is very difficult for a kid to get incarcerated for a MJ offense. VERY difficult.

    even as an adult, our county has an automatic diversion from felony to misdemeanor for drug crimes - iow unless you have certain priors, felony drug offenders are automatically offered a diversion to a misdemeanor court proceeding, even though possession of coke, etc. is a felony

    SALE of MJ is a felony, but it's still pretty much a NO JAIL offense for FIRST OFFENSE.

    i mean seriously, everybody and their mother smokes pot and people simply are not going to jail for it.

    i realize SOME states still take MJ seriously, but in my parts they don't.

    does anybody in king/pierce/sno county actually FEAR incarceration for smoking bud?

    i always suggest people talk to prosecutors or defense attorneys if they don't believe me. this is common knowledge.

    again, i am aware some jurisdictions are not like this.

  • ||

    it is very difficult for a kid to get incarcerated for a MJ offense. VERY difficult.

    This is true. My buddy got caught with pot in high school and he served no time. They put the fear of god into him and gave him a slap on the wrist.

    And that was over 20 years ago in Eastern Washington.

    WA is relatively cool about pot, but I was on a rampage.

    Note: It really was a buddy and not myself. I on the other hand got caught in Utah like 3 years later on road trip and was thrown in jail for a day with a $400 fine (I could have stayed in jail for a week without a fine). Weird, I almost completely forgot about that.

    FUCKING PIGS!!!

  • ||

    it would not surprise me that UTAH is a lot stricter on MJ than WA.

    for reasons that are obvious beyond mention

  • Archduke PantsFan||

    But UT has the Bonneville salt flats.

  • Paul.||

    Did that come in as a felony, JC?

  • ||

    No

    Misdemeanor possession of controlled substance.

  • Fluffy||

    That doesn't matter.

    Anything that sends you to any criminal court of any kind anywhere on the east coast bars you from entering just about any licensed profession, which in 2012 is all of them including ditch digger.

    As long as you're sending people to court, don't try to tell me it's no big deal because you get a lot of shots at court before there's actual incarceration.

  • ||

    not sure if this stat is accurate, but as for california...

    "The truth of the matter is that of the 171,161 prisoners in California as of December 2008, only 1,499 of those prisoners were incarcerated for crimes related to marijuana, and those crimes were identified as felonies such as possession for sale, sales, and cultivation of marijuana."

    http://www.policechiefmagazine....._id=102010

  • Ted S.||

    That's still 1500 immoral incarcerations.

  • Fluffy||

    How many people controlled by the probation department are there for marijuana related crimes?

    How many people in the state get positive CORI hits for marijuana related crimes?

  • ||

    If you tax it too heavily you'll still have an underground black market, and lose a good amount of the benefits that come from legalization. Especially cause the WA bill doesn't allow for home growing. iirc.

  • ||

    i am the first to say that WA's initiaitve is FAR from perfect

    you are correct. home growing would still be illegal

    and i don't think it will eliminate the black market.

    i will say that imo it will greatly increase state revenue and a substantial %age of mj users will choose to use it legally via the exceptions in this initiative

    imo, the most problematic aspect is the extremely low threshold for DUI mj under this initiative that would make it difficult for legitimate medical MJ patients for example, to drive legally.

    the threshold is way too low

    granted, at such a low threshold, it's hard for LEO's to even detect MJ usage, let alone impairment, but the TECHNICAL violation will still exist

    THAT is by far the most problematic.

    my arguments for this initiative are much like the ones i believed for medical MJ

    i am not for a second saying this is some kind of panacea

    it's much better than the status quo NOW AND it's a good step on the slippery slope towards a more robust legalization

  • califernian||

    It's hard to say who hates liberty more. Mainstream GOP folks or mainstream Democrats.

    It's as if the biggest threat to one's safety and happiness is the possibility that someone else act non-violently as they see fit.

  • Cytotoxic||

    I'm calling it as mainstream Dems. Liberals are more...systematic and borg like in their anti-freedom. The GOPers are just ignorant bigotted or slow in the head. Usually.

    I remember the vote a while ago on the bill to limit what agencies can carry weapons. The GOP had a miserly 16 or so vote for the bill (in the House?). The Dems had a shocking 0. Not one. I'd love to be proven wrong, but don't expect a civil libertarian equivalent to the TP to spring up in the wake of Dem defeat.

  • ||

    i agree with this.

    and at least where the rubber meets the road, from a street perspective, i see "law and order" dems as being some of the most statist, liberty hating fucks around.

    there's a metric assload of spitzer types out there.

    repubs of course can be totally anti-freedom too, but i just see more from dems, ime

  • Cytotoxic||

    The Dems have really done a bang-up job of seizing the authoritarian Law 'n Order mantle from the Repubs. They don't own it, but it's shared now.

  • streamfortyseven||

    Look, Mitt Romney and the people behind him had the nomination bought and paid for a year ago. The whole process is a charade. it's lots of playacting, and the result is predetermined. Ron Paul would never get the nomination nor would anyone like him get the nomination. That sort of thing would result in unpredictable policy changes and a political establishment outside of the control of the large corporations, and it's not going to happen, and they're going to make sure it doesn't happen by whatever chicanery they need to ensure it doesn't happen. There are no rules, only outcomes, and the outcome for the GOP is that Mitt Romney is the nominee. For the Democrats, Obama is the nominee - note that he had absolutely no challenger from the "progressive" end of the Party. Between them there is no policy difference, and this is deliberate:
    “The argument that the two parties should represent opposed ideals and policies, one, perhaps, of the Right and the other of the Left, is a foolish idea acceptable only to doctrinaire and academic thinkers. Instead, the two parties should be almost identical, so that the American people can ‘throw the rascals out’ at any election without leading to any profound or extensive shifts in policy.” Carroll Quigley, Tragedy and Hope, 1965, p1245

    and you can check this out, too: http://veilofreality.com/2010/.....of-choice/

  • Westmiller||

    There are at least three errors in this article:

    1. "Six states ... tried to nominate him"
    Whether they tried or not, only THREE states had a majority of Paul delegates ... add Maine, if you wish, but that makes four, not the required five.
    2. "A rule change was adopted saying you need eight."
    The rules change applies to the 2016 convention, not 2012.
    3. "Paul's 190 or so votes ... were not announced from the podium"
    Since he was never officially nominated, all non-Romney votes were simply classified as abstentions or "Other". Paul got 185 votes reported by state delegations.

  • Cytotoxic||

    Requesting confirmation. It wouldn't surprise me at all to see Doherty fuck up and get it wrong.

  • CE||

    Which is why they made sure it wasn't five, by picking their own delegates in Louisiana and Maine.

  • Brian Doherty||

    1) Logically, the requirement for demonstrating support in rule 40 cannot mean the vote, which happens AFTER the nomination. As far as I know, the reporting of the two papers, corroborated by the Nevada video and other delegates in Tampa I talked to, is correct, and six states submitted petitions to the secretary requesting his nomination. If Westmiller knows this not to be true, I'm interested in hearing how. He is making an interpretation of what rule 40 means that cannot logically be true, although I have failed in many attempts to get anyone from RNC to try to authoritatively parse what it DOES mean.
    3) is factually correct, and in fact just repeating exactly what my blog post says. I am presuming, as are most people, that Pennsylvania's mystery five votes for "Paul Ryan" were for Ron Paul, thus the ambiguous "190 or so."
    For 2), I was relying on the reporting of the two newspapers I cited, whose reporters were on the scene, as I am not. That is indeed incorrect, though that means the real reason for refusing to place Paul in nomination is unclear.

  • ||

    Seems to me like the GOP leadership is actively saying, "No, libertarians and sympathizers, fuck off. Seriously, we don't need you, and we don't want to see you here in four years."

    How can Paul not out and out endorse Gary Johnson after all these insults? With the additional attention he's getting right now, this is probably the best time in the entire election cycle to do it.

  • Archduke PantsFan||

    I saw a clip of the action on the news. That's crazy.

  • widget||

    What's a bit odd about Nevada is that it's Mormon country. When we were driving back from Yellowstone a few weeks ago we stopped at a few small Nevada towns the eat, piss, and shake our legs loose. There were fireworks going off. I got curious about this and stuck my head in a local's F150 and asked him what was going on. Pioneer Day! Fireworks, gambling, prostitution, religious fundamentalism, patriotism, and Ron Paul - that ain't authorized.

  • widget||

    I should point out that Nevada is only stone's throw from California. If you drive down interstate 15 you can see it. It's desert rats on either side of the boarder. On the Nevada side the trailers are occupied and maintained, on the California side they are vacant and unkept.

  • Paul.||

    Breaking:

    Romney nominated.

    Blonde woman I've never seen before in red dress talks to the crowd.

    And Biden prepares for run in 2016.

    http://seattletimes.nwsource.c.....paign.html

  • widget||

    Speakers included Hispanic candidates for office; former Rep. Artur Davis, a one-time Democrat and member of the Congressional Black Caucus; businessmen and women and former Sen. Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania.

    I'm having some trouble parsing that sentence. Rick Santorum is businessman and woman from Pennsylvania?

  • Broseph of Invention||

    Fuck the RNC, but don't give up on the individual state GOP. I live in Minnesota, where most of the local Republicans are tea party types sympathetic to Ron Paul and libertarians in general, at least enough to get behind Paul-endorsed Kurt Bills. I can't see the two party system being defeated, but at the local level it's much more pliable. Vote Gary and focus locally.

  • ||

    What's a bit odd about Nevada is that it's Mormon country.

    Not really odd. The rural areas of all the states adjoining Utah are heavily Mormon. The big cities, not so much so. So, in Nevada you have the bulk of the population in and around Las Vegas, with only a tiny fraction Mormon, with the rest of the thinly populated areas of the state heavily LDS.

  • tteotdead||

    I'm assuming this is why they have all those brain-dead stormtroopers patrolling the area causing havoc, because they planned on changing the rules and people would be outraged.
    This is the same nasty tactic as poll-taxes. "It's going to cost you 5 dollars to vote today." "Thank goodness I have $6." "Did I say five, I meant $8." I mean seriously. lol. Paul is obviously a threat to their Empire if they have to change the rules.

  • macsnafu||

    It's high time that people realized that the Republican Party has *never* really been about freedom, and all freedom-lovers need to leave and join the Libertarian Party. Let the statists have their party, with a lot fewer members.

GET REASON MAGAZINE

Get Reason's print or digital edition before it’s posted online

  • Progressive Puritans: From e-cigs to sex classifieds, the once transgressive left wants to criminalize fun.
  • Port Authoritarians: Chris Christie’s Bridgegate scandal
  • The Menace of Secret Government: Obama’s proposed intelligence reforms don’t safeguard civil liberties

SUBSCRIBE

advertisement