Ron Paul’s delegates to Tampa’s Republican Convention are looking at two ways of disenfranchising America’s Republican primary and caucus voters, denying them their voice in selecting the next Republican presidential nominee … and handing the election to Obama.
Disenfranchise – that means to take away the right or ability (or “franchise) of someone to cast a vote.
Can there be any bigger betrayal of democracy than disenfranchising American voters by invalidating or ignoring the votes of those Americans?
If someone comes into a voting precinct and steals or destroys a box full of ballots – so all the voters who’d cast those ballots were disenfranchised by ensuring that their votes cannot be counted … is there any bigger betrayal of our democracy? No, and it would be a felony to do so.
If someone selected to serve in the Electoral College decides to disenfranchise of the voters who sent him there by ignoring the will of those voters and casting his vote for someone other candidate (and believe it or not, that would actually be constitutionally valid), still, can you imagine any bigger betrayal of America’s voters and America’s democracy?
So how is that any different from Ron Paul supporters who get themselves chosen as delegates to Tampa deciding to either “vote their conscience” or abstain from voting in the first ballot, in either way working to deny the actual Republican voters their democratic right to select their party’s candidate for President?
There is no difference.
I was debating with a Paul supporter this evening, and he boldly supported the widely-publicized plans of Paul supporters who’ve become “pledged delegates” for Romney, but who do not actually support Romney. That plan calls for these people, men and women who often lied in order to become “pledged delegates” for Mitt Romney – even though they really support Ron Paul – to abstain from casting their vote in the first round of balloting. This action, if permitted, will disenfranchise millions of Republican voters., robbing people who sent these deceptive delegates to Tampa of their franchise. They will, if they succeed, deny Romney the nomination that millions of Republican primary and caucus voters gave to him in their states’ primary elections.
Others – even leaders within the Paul Campaign – are suggesting that Romney-pledged (but Paul-supporting) delegates in Tampa go a step further. Instead of abstaining, ensuring that nobody wins on the first ballot, they are being encouraged to “vote their conscience” – in effect, going even one step further in disenfranchising the voters who sent them to Tampa. Instead of their voices not being heard when their delegates abstain from voting, their votes will be cast aside by the “consciences” of dishonest people who are going to Tampa under false flags.
I first revealed this in my blog about the Nevada Paul campaign’s plan to encourage the delegates they captured (by lying and claiming to support Romney, so they’d be selected as delegates pledged to Romney) to “vote their conscience.” In that blog, I published the actual memo the campaign sent to its delegates (later republished by the Las Vegas Sun’s Jon Ralston).
It is clear that Paul supporters going to Tampa as Romney delegates intend to find some way to disenfranchise Republican voters.
They couldn’t win at the ballot box – they didn’t win primaries, they didn’t win caucuses – in Nevada’s caucuses, they captured only 19% of the voters, but through state convention hijinks and outright deception, they captured nearly all of the state’s 25 delegates. “Pledged” to Romney, they nonetheless support Paul, and at least some of them seem intent on doing whatever they can to disenfranchise Nevada’s conservative Republican voters by either abstaining from voting (denying Romney the nomination he’s earned at the ballot box) or actually voting against the express will of Republican primary and caucus voters to steal the nomination for Ron Paul.
If they succeed in disrupting the Tampa convention, one of several things will happen:
1. They will actually steal the nomination for Ron Paul, a man who has never had any national success at the ballot box, ensuring that Obama will win in a landslide; or,
2. They will so disrupt the nominating process – live on national televisi0n – that whomever (presumably Romney) eventually gets the nomination will be “damaged goods,” giving the election to Obama, but not by a landslide.
Either way, Obama will be the only winner, American will be the big loser, and Ron Paul’s supporters in Tampa (aided and abetted by Ron Paul himself) will be to blame.
One final note – if this happens, if Ron Paul’s supporters so disrupt the Tampa convention that Obama wins re-election, the future national political career of Rand Paul will be toast. In his second term, Obama will finish what he started, destroying America as we know it. Republicans will never forget – and never forgive – the Paul political family.
What’s really odd is that Ron Paul’s Quixotic campaign in 2012 seems to have really been about laying the groundwork and building the political machine to carry son Rand Paul into future national prominence, and perhaps a Presidency for himself. But if the Paul machine disenfranchises millions of Republicans and hands the election to Obama, that dream will die stillborn. Yet the Paul supporters who are so enthused about disrupting Tampa don’t seem to understand what they’ll be doing to their own long-range dreams.
It’s as sad as it is frightening.
Ned Barnett – Nevada Conservative
Ned Barnett has worked in campaigns, and as a speechwriter to candidates and elected officials, since he was the “mascot” to the local Young Republicans in 1964 (Goldwater) – he has managed media and strategy for three state-level Presidential campaigns, and worked hand-in-glove with the legendary Lee Atwater in South Carolina in the Ford Campaign. In 2009-10, as an active Tea Party supporter, he served as both the Clark County/Las Vegas and Nevada Republican Party Communications Director. He owns Barnett Marketing Communications in Las Vegas, and provides a full range of PR, marketing, issues-management and fund-raising services for clients in Las Vegas, around the country, and in several other countries. He can be reached at 702-561-1167 or email@example.com …
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