Arkansas joined a list of several states this weekend that will send several supporters of Ron Paul to the Republican National Convention in Tampa. However, unlike in many states, it all happened relatively peacefully and with little controversy.
You may wonder how this is possible since presumptive nominee Mitt Romney carried the state with over 68 percent of the vote. Ron Paul came in second with 13.39 percent, but fell short of the required 15 percent minimum to receive any delegates under the Republican Party of Arkansas rules.
Therefore, Romney was awarded all 33 pledged delegates up for grabs.
However, the process for electing the actual delegates is more complicated. Supporters of Ron Paul used a strategy to get elected as what they refer to as “stealth delegates.” This means that they filed as delegates and pledged to support Mitt Romney on the first ballot even though they actually support Ron Paul. Using this strategy, they hope to elect enough “stealth delegates” to have an impact on items at the convention, such as the Republican Party platform.
Their opportunity to execute this strategy occurred this weekend when Congressional Districts caucused to elected 12 of the 33 total delegates. The four CD caucuses were made up of delegates elected in county caucuses which occurred between April 23, 2012 and May 11, 2012.
By participating in these county caucuses and being elected as delegates to the District Caucuses, Paul supporters were able to elect their own slate of delegates in the Second District and the Fourth District over the preferred delegates submitted by the Romney campaign, even over prominent R
such as Congressman Tim Griffin (I am told Griffin is running for an at-large delegate spot, not for his congressional district delegate spot.)
In the Third District, they apparently had a sizable presence, but did not have enough to elect their slate. In the First District, they did not have much of a presence at all.
The remaining 21 “at-large” delegates will be elected at a state committee meeting on June 23. It is not expected that Paul supporters will be able to have as much of an influence at this meeting as the state committee is made up mainly of county committee chairs and other elected party leaders which are likely to elect actual Romney supporters.
A full report from Ron Paul blogger Doug Wead details how they elected their delegates. The report is complimentary of RPA Chairman Doyle Webb, who they say treated them fairly. A big credit should go to Webb for allowing Paul supporters to participate within the party rules without chaos breaking out as we saw in other states such as Louisiana.
Below is a full list of delegates elected in the District Caucuses on Saturday…
- CD1 Delegates: Dorothy Crockett, Richard Caster, Alex Dunlap – Alternates: Jacque Martin, Jason Milne, Andrew Stricklin
- CD2 Delegates: Todd Ellis, Lonnie Lancaster, Zachary Smart (all Ron Paul Supporters) – Alternates: Lynne Baker, Mozella Flucht, Benjamin Peterson
- CD3 Delegates: Susan Gessler, Rex Terry, Duane Neal – Alternates: John Brice Honey, Johnny Dillard, Rob Deal
- CD4 Delegates: Tammy Pope, Cora Linda Liscinski, Michael Motes (all Ron Paul Supporters) Alternates: Stacy DeJarnette, Sarah Darling, Drury Hoover