March 17, 2012
Supporters of presidential candidate Ron Paul are complaining that other Clarke County Republicans shut out their slate of delegates at the county convention Saturday.
The libertarian-leaning Texas congressman’s supporters are trying to win election as delegates to the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., in August, libertarian activist Carter Kessler said.
They claim the Clarke County GOP broke its own rules by electing a slate of delegates that excluded Paul supporters over their objections.
The tactic of contesting delegate nominations is part of Paul’s longshot strategy to win the Republican nomination despite not winning a single state so far, according to ABC News. His campaign is also “accused of muddying county conventions in Colorado and Iowa last weekend,” the network reported Thursday.
The dispute highlights tension between Paul supporters, many of whom are young and newcomers to politics, and veteran Republican activists. State party Chairwoman Sue Everhart referenced similar conflicts in an email to party members Wednesday. Many longtime Republicans didn’t show up to county conventions, while many new activists did, she said.
Paul supporters gathered a quorum Sunday and elected a competing slate of delegates, Kessler said.
“We tried to do this the right way,” he said. “Like the little tyrants they are, they said ‘That’s it,’ and ran out the door.”