About a week ago, both the Republican Liberty Caucus and the Virginia state chapter of the RLC issued press releases calling for the resignation of the chairman of the Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus. The reasoning for this action revolves around the conflict that took place during the recent Republican Nation Convention in Tampa, Florida.
For many Republican and conservative activists who only heard news of the convention via reports from the mainstream media, much of this article may come as a bit of a shock. However, behind the cheery exterior in Florida, there lurked a number of troubling accounts.
First, as mentioned in a previous article, the changes in the convention rules greatly upset a number of conservative activists including Virginia Republican National Committeeman and president of the Leadership Institute, Morton Blackwell. Rather than using proportional voting in early state primaries, which would allow for greater development in the GOP primaries, this switch means that an exceedingly small number of voters in places like Iowa, New Hampshire, and South Carolina will likely dictate future party nominees. In response, Blackwell warned that these changes would “concentrate and centralize more power at the top of the party, and to shut off opportunities for power in the party to flow from the bottom up”. Video of the vote on this matter shows that the result was not decisive, but Speaker of the House John Boehner declared in a dictatorial fashion “in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it.”
Along these same lines, rather than unify the party behind Mitt Romney, the convention further drove a wedge between the Ron Paul and Romney supporters. For starters, early in the convention, many delegates from Maine who supported Ron Paul were stripped of their voting power. To make matters worse, although a candidate and elected official in the Republican Party, Representative Ron Paul was not allowed to speak on the convention floor. Lastly, in a move which must have been done out of spite, when delegates from each state cast their votes, the officially announced totals made no mention of Paul’s total.
Here is a video which outlines all of the objections raised in this article:
Therefore, as stated at the beginning of this article, as a result of the events that took place under the leadership of RNC Chairman Reince Priebus, the Republican Liberty Caucus and many state chapters of the RLC have issued a resolution calling for his resignation.
The text of the RLC-VA resolution is as follows:
September 17, 2012 (Staunton, VA) – The Republican Liberty Caucus of Virginia Board approved the following resolution in response to the events at the Republican National Convention in Tampa:
Whereas, the management of the Republican National Convention in Tampa displayed a blatant disregard for the rules under which the convention committees and convention’s general business session were supposed to be conducted;
Whereas, national party leaders and agents of the Romney campaign worked to disenfranchise legitimately elected delegates, silence dissent and disregard legitimate motions and the results of votes during the national convention;
Whereas, fraud and coercion were used to pass new rules which reduce the power and autonomy of state and local party organizations, allow future rule changes without proper oversight by the body of the party and impose a top-down structure of governance in place of the party’s traditional bottom-up structure;
Whereas, most of the factional problems at the convention could have been resolved through reasonable negotiation in ways which promoted unity and cooperation, but were instead dealt with by a heavy handed incompetence which has led to greater divisions, a weakening of the party and loss of support for the presidential nominee;
Whereas, responsibility for the mismanagement and abuse of process at the national convention ultimately rests with the national Chairman;
Whereas, it is to the benefit of the party to protect the rights and interests of party members and preserve the traditional and unique practices of the state parties;
Therefore be it resolved that:
We call for the immediate resignation of Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus;
We reject the validity of all of the revisions to the party rules passed at the Tampa convention and consider the 2008 rules to remain in effect;
We commend the efforts of the Republican National Committeeman from Virginia, Morton Blackwell, to prevent adoption of these odious rule changes;
We condemn Ben Ginsberg, John Sununu and John Boehner for their leadership of and complicity in these activities;
We assert the primacy of the state parties in determining policy for conducting party elections, nomination of candidates and apportionment of delegates within their states without the interference of the national committee or any campaign or outside entities.
We urge the Republican Party of Virginia State Central Committee, our State Chairman and our Republican National Committee representatives to act on this resolution and vote to return control of the party to the state parties and the body of party members. We urge members to take this resolution to their local unit committees for passage by said committees, and for Virginia Republican activists to endorse it.
The unity of the Republican Party is in a sorry state due to the leadership, or lack thereof, of Reince Priebus and his confederates. Conservatives and libertarians have been demoralized and disenfranchised and his actions have harmed the party and its candidates in not only the 2012 elections, but for elections in the years to come.
Partially as a result of the devious actions which took place at the convention, most Ron Paul supporters I know are unifying behind Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson and, try as I might, I can’t say that I blame them. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. Nothing defeats the Republican Party quite as well as the Republican Party. We should never forget that Reince Pribus bears a considerable portion of this blame.
It is time for Priebus to go!