Tampa – The Ron Paul delegates lost their first two major fights of the Republican National Convention.
Their efforts to seat the disputed Maine delegation failed on a voice vote when the Report of the Committee on Credentials was accepted. Boos rained down on the floor immediately after its passage. Chants of "Seat them now" and "point of order!"erupted from all over the arena while Mitt Romney delegates attempted to chant "USA!" The entire convention morphed into a cauldron of dueling chants and noise that continued into Zori Fonalledas' presention of the Report of the Commitee on Permanent Organization.
Gaveling several times, RNC Chairman Reince Prebius pleaded with delegates to show respect to Fonalledas.
A calm lasted briefly until John Sununu came to the podium to present the Report of the Committee on Rules. Paul delegates throughout the hall told Reason that they were unhappy with several of the proposed changes, particularly Rule 12 and Rule 16.
Rule 12, they said, offered the party the ability to changes rules after the passage of them at the convention.
"These rules allow the RNC to change the rules without our approval," said Luis LaRott, 31, of Houston and a Ron Paul delegate.
The other rule many of them were unhappy with, Rule 16, restructures the way delegates are distributed at caucuses and primaries. Paul delegates were concerned with the changes that would eliminate the ability of the states to choose delegates.
These two votes caused a major uproar on the floor but Prebius ignored calls from Paul delegates, many that had spent months studying parliamentary procedures, that challenged the rules.