During the months of primaries and caucuses, the popularity of Ron Paul was a fear expressed amongst both neoconservative and “mainstream” Republican insiders in hushed tones, rarely ever surfacing, but instead roiling under politics’ prudential lid. Now that Mitt Romney has sealed the nomination with enough delegates from the primary states, GOP insiders are trying to solidify their position.
Instead of magnanimously bringing Ron Paul’s supporters into the party to court them for the next four years, they seem to be doing their darnedest to keep them out. Take Romney’s gubernatorial state, Massachusetts.
The GOP machine, there, has required that the Ron Paul nominees to the Tampa convention sign an affidavit to support Mitt. This is something new. Just for Ron Paul delegates. And of course some
libertarian-leaning delegates balked at the notion of signing legal affidavits pledging what they had committed verbally at the caucuses where they were elected. Many later submitted them, but not until after the deadline.
As a result, the committee disqualified them, winnowing the number of Liberty delegates and alternates to the convention from 35 to 19. . . .
Not surprisingly, the duly elected delegates “feel cheated.”
A spokesman for the Massachusetts Republican Party would not say why the affidavits were required of delegates this year, and the chairman of the Allocations Committee would not agree to an interview. Instead, the chairman offered an e-mailed statement saying that the Romney campaign, through its representative on his committee, had the right to reject delegates for “just cause.”
When I prophesy negative consequences of a Mitt Romney presidency, this sort of thing lingers in my mind. What is the GOP afraid of? Actual limits on government?
This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.