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Thread: Rubio Makes Unprecedented Bid to Keep Delegates for Contested Convention

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  1. #1
    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    Rubio Makes Unprecedented Bid to Keep Delegates for Contested Convention

    POLITICS
    MAR 30 2016, 12:47 AM ET

    Rubio Makes Unprecedented Bid to Keep Delegates for Contested Convention


    by ARI MELBER


    Despite suspending his campaign, Sen. Marco Rubio is attempting to keep every delegate he won while running for President.

    The unusual move reflects preparations for a contested convention this summer — and comes as Donald Trump backed away from an earlier pledge to support the Republican party's nominee if he is treated unfairly after winning more delegates than his rivals.


    Rubio aide Alex Burgos told MSNBC that while the Florida senator is "no longer a candidate," he "wants to give voters a chance to stop Trump."


    When presidential candidates suspend their campaigns, typically their delegates become free to support the candidate of their own choosing at the convention. Rubio, however, has quietly been reaching out to party officials with a different approach.


    He is personally asking state parties in 21 states and territories to refrain from releasing any of the 172 delegates he won while campaigning this year, MSNBC has learned.


    Rubio sent a signed letter to the Chair of the Alaska Republican Party requesting the 5 delegates he won in that state "remain bound to vote for me" at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland in July.

    Marco Rubio's Letter to Alaska Republican Party.

    Rubio copied National Chairman Reince Preibus on the letter - and sent the same request to all 21 states and territories where he won delegates, a source working for Rubio confirmed.


    The Alaska GOP granted the request this week.


    "Rubio said, 'I want my delegates,' and I said, okay," explains retired Army Col. Peter Goldberg, Chairman of the Alaska Republican Party.


    Goldberg said he consulted RNC officials in Washington, who told him other state parties are consulting their rules in order to decide what to do with Rubio's delegates.


    "They said some are trying to figure it out," Goldberg said. "Most states are leaning towards giving [Rubio] his delegates."


    Delegate allocation decisions are up to each state party, not the RNC.


    Alaska's party rules say delegates can be taken from a candidate if he "drops out" before the state's convention.


    Since those rules do "not use the word 'suspend'," Goldberg said he decided Rubio could keep his delegates, while acknowledging that previously, "we've always taken 'suspend' to mean 'drop.'"


    Presidential candidates often say they are "suspending" — rather than ending — a campaign in order to maintain an operation for handling bills and paperwork.


    "No one has ever really tested this, the idea has always been that when you suspend, you're out," said a senior Republican in Washington, D.C., who did not want to publicly discuss a contested convention.


    "No candidate has ever said, 'I want to suspend — but I also want the delegates,'" according to the source.


    Rubio's gambit could even impact who wins the Republican nomination.


    If he convinces most state parties to maintain his delegates, that could effectively deny Trump 172 potential delegates from now through the first vote at this summer's convention.


    If Trump fails to win a majority of delegates during the primaries, he can try to make up the gap by winning over some of the 323 delegates thought to be up for grabs.


    Campaigns have talked about winning over those 323 delegates, a reference to delegates from states that don't bind their vote — which some describe as a GOP version of the Democrats' super delegates — combined with delegates backing candidates no longer in the race.


    The Trump Campaign, for example, has explicitly said it can woo those delegates if it finishes the primaries short the 1,237-delegate majority.


    If Rubio is successful, however, he could cut that prized pool of delegates down to just 151.


    That means if Trump finishes more than 100 delegates shy of a majority, he is less likely to win the nomination on the first ballot.


    While the prospect of taking these delegates off the table only spilled into public view this week, when Alaska reapportioned its delegates, the potential significance was not lost on Rubio's campaign.


    People close to the senator discussed this strategy before he suspended his campaign, according to a Republican source, even gaming out language for his concession speech that would be less likely to trigger a loss of delegates.


    Even if successful, Rubio's delegate plan would not give him any individual leverage to play "kingmaker" at a contested convention.


    Even in states that bind his delegates, like Alaska, they will only be required to vote Rubio on the convention's early ballots. The rules would not give Rubio any official control over who his delegates might support on later ballots, when the rules "release" them from having to back the candidate they were bound to by their state's primary results.


    Beyond that, Rubio's plan also turns on the national rules governing the convention.


    Some states only bind delegates to a candidate if he is listed on the national convention's first ballot. So Rubio could convince a state party to hold his delegates, based on their rules, but he would still need the national convention to put his name on that first ballot.


    That might be a tall order for a man no longer running for President. Indeed, past conventions have required candidates to achieve a minimum level of support in the primaries to be listed on the ballot.


    Take Minnesota, where Rubio won 17 delegates. The state GOP reiterated this month that delegates attached to a candidate must vote for him "if that candidate is on the first ballot" at the convention, but if not, they "may vote for any candidate."


    In a contested convention, delegates and insiders backing Cruz and Trump would have sway over who is listed on the first ballot. It is possible an anti-Trump coalition would push rules protecting Rubio in order to thwart Trump.


    While Rubio is going to great lengths to hold onto his delegates, there is no doubt he has stopped competing in future primaries. This week he sent a signed affidavit to have his name removed from the ballot in California, which awards 172 delegates on the last voting day in June.


    Goldberg, the Alaska GOP chair, has his eyes on that state.


    "My gut feeling is that no one will clinch 1,237 before convention," he says, "It may all hang on what happens in California, but we'll see."

    http://www.nbcnews.com/politics/2016...ention-n547646

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  2. #2
    Senior Member Judy's Avatar
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    Interesting. I really don't understand this delegate fight. It should be the party rule that if you drop out, your delegates should go to the winner of the state on the first ballot. This having losers sneaking around buying up other losers delegates is sleazy, slimy and stupid.
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    Senior Member posylady's Avatar
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    They are trying to get something to hold over trumps head to try to get him to comply to their way of thinking. He won't give in and they are changing rules in the middle of the game becoming more desperate. Obviously this scares the good ole boys in Washington as they become more desperate to hold onto their power they have. The good ole boys don't want to give up their money machine.
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    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    The RNC Rules say they can change the rules before every convention.

    Brokered convention - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brokered_convention
    Wikipedia

    The adoption of rules are subject to change every election cycle and is determined by the Republican National Convention prior to the convention date.
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    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    Republican Convention Rules LINK


    Those who talk about "changing the rules" don't really understand the process, he says. It's a blank slate: There are no rules to change yet . . .
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  6. #6
    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    Rubio moves to keep delegates on lockdown until convention, to 'stop Trump'

    Published March 30, 2016 FoxNews.com

    Marco Rubio is moving to lock down his delegates until the Republican convention so no one else can claim them just yet, in an unconventional move that represents the latest bid to stall Donald Trump’s front-running campaign – and perhaps give the Florida senator and ex-candidate a bigger role to play in July.

    A Rubio spokesman confirmed the push Wednesday, while suggesting it’s more an effort to thwart Trump by denying him the necessary delegates than to somehow get Rubio back in the game in the event of a contested convention.


    "Of course, he's no longer a candidate and wants to give voters a chance to stop Trump," spokesman Alex Burgos told FoxNews.com.


    Rubio is making his personal appeal in a letter to the chairs of state Republican parties across the country, the entities that decide how to divvy up delegates.


    While some of the senator’s delegates might otherwise be allowed to support other candidates before the July convention, Rubio is asking that those delegates be “bound” to him through at least the first round of voting at the convention.


    The letter, a copy of which was obtained by FoxNews.com, says the decision to suspend his campaign was “not intended to release any National Convention Delegates bound to me as a result of the 2016 delegate selection process that took place in your State.


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    “It is my desire at this time that the delegates allocated to me by your rules remain bound to vote for me on at least the first nominating ballot at the National Convention.”

    According to MSNBC
    , Rubio is sending the letter to parties in all 21 states and territories where he won delegates.


    As of Wednesday afternoon, Rubio had 171 delegates to his name. In a normal year, such a delegate haul might not matter much – but in the competitive 2016 GOP primary race, keeping all those delegates off the field could potentially keep Trump from clinching the nomination pre-convention with the necessary 1,237.


    Trump currently has 736; Texas Sen. Ted Cruz has 463; and Ohio Gov. John Kasich has 143.

    Under the complex set of rules governing each state’s primary, dozens of Rubio’s delegates – though not all of them -- would normally become “unbound” before the convention and free to vote for whomever they choose.


    Ever since Rubio suspended his campaign, those delegates have been an attractive target for the remaining candidates. Barry Bennett, a senior adviser to the Trump campaign, recently told FoxNews.com the campaign already had started “going after” the “unbound” delegates.


    “We aren’t going to waste resources on them, but if you’re 'wooable' we plan to woo,” Bennett said.


    It’s unclear whether any sizeable number of Rubio’s delegates would back Trump anyway, as Rubio himself describes Cruz as the only true conservative left in the race. But Rubio’s letter-writing push is an attempt to prevent Trump from peeling off any before the convention.


    MSNBC reported that the chairman of the Alaska GOP already has agreed to grant Rubio’s request.

    Alaska previously had divvied up Rubio's five delegates to Trump and Cruz. However, since the actual people have not been selected yet, the state party said the delegates will go back to Rubio.

    In Oklahoma, state party Chairwoman Pam Pollard said she also received a letter from Rubio saying he has not released his 12 delegates from that state.


    Meanwhile, the three remaining Republican candidates are ramping up efforts to win over Rubio's delegates, in addition to claiming dozens more unbound delegates, in the contentious battle for the 1,237 delegate majority.


    Acknowledging a late start in the nuts-and-bolts business of political wrangling, Trump's campaign will open a Washington, D.C. office in the coming days to run its delegate operation and congressional relations team, Bennett told the AP. In addition to the new space, Trump has hired a veteran political operative to serve as the campaign's convention manager. Paul Manafort, a seasoned Washington hand, will oversee the campaign's "entire convention presence" including a potential contested convention, said Bennett.


    There are certain states where the allocation of delegates to the GOP convention is so complicated that they could produce outcomes where a candidate who did not prevail in a given primary might yet win that state’s delegates to the convention.


    Trump has vowed to both file a lawsuit and an internal challenge within the Republican National Committee over reports that Cruz, despite losing the Louisiana primary to Trump in early March, could draw the support of enough “unbound” delegates and from Rubio supporters to actually overtake Trump in the state by as many as 10 delegates.


    Asked on March 15 if he was preparing for a contested convention, Cruz told Fox News, “We make preparations for every contingency.”

    http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2016...l?intcmp=hpbt1

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