Ron Paul Raining on Romey's Parade - Mitt Romney may be getting all the splashy headlines in his march toward the August Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., but fellow Republican Ron Paul has been steadily fundraising, visiting primary states, picking up delegates and gaining control of state party organizations.
Backers of the libertarian-leaning U.S. representative from Texas -- the lone active challenger to Romney -- have taken control of the Iowa Republican Party and become more influential in party politics in several other states, The Hill and other media outlets reported.
State GOP organizations are usually responsible for get-out-the-vote efforts and other duties necessary for a successful election. If officials aren't Romney supporters, the former Massachusetts governor and Republicans down-ticket could suffer an enthusiasm gap.
By using party rules, Paul-ites have engineered post-primary organizing coups in several states, confirming what party insiders say would be an attempt to enhance Paul's role at the convention and in party's platform deliberations, The Washington Times said.
In Massachusetts -- the state where Romney governed -- Paul loyalists recently helped block more than half of Romney's preferred nominees from being named delegates at state party caucuses even though Romney won the state in a cakewalk.
While Paul is given virtually no chance of claiming the nomination in Tampa, he sure can try to jam up things and possibly deny Romney the nomination on the first ballot, insiders said. A candidate needs 1,144 delegates to win the party nod.
Paul's strength in Iowa and Nevada, two swing states in the presidential election, has emerged as Romney's biggest concern, observers told The Hill.
In fact, national party leaders wrote a letter to their state counterparts in Nevada, which Romney won.
In a letter delivered Wednesday to Nevada GOP Chairman Michael McDonald, RNC chief counsel John R. Philippe Jr. said if Ron Paul delegates were allowed to take too many slots for the national convention, Nevada's contingent may not be seated, the Las Vegas Sun reported.
"I believe it is highly likely that any committee with jurisdiction over the matter would find improper any change to the election, selection, allocation or binding of delegates, thus jeopardizing the seating of Nevada's entire delegation to the national convention," Philippe said in his letter but noting his letter was advisory only.
In Iowa, the state's new party chairman, A.J. Spiker, is a Paul supporter, as are a majority of the state party's central committee members. Spiker has pledged to work for all of the party's nominees.
Iowa originally was reported going for Romney, but a recount awarded the win to former U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania, who has left the campaign.
Craig Robinson, a former political director of the Iowa Republican Party, said he believes Spiker and others in the state party structure may not be inclined to do the work necessary to help Romney win there.
"This could be problematic for Romney down the road and problematic for Iowa Republicans in general," Robinson said. "I think Iowa's going to be very tough, very difficult for Mitt Romney this fall."
Ron Paul supporters take over Maine GOP convention - In a major upset, Ron Paul supporters narrowly won the chairmanship of the Maine Republican Convention today.
Paul supporter Brent Tweed edged Charles Cragin 1,118 to 1,114 in a very close vote.
The vote came after Paul supporters elected Ron Morrell secretary. Morrell got 1,119 votes out of 2,204 to be elected convention secretary.
Paul supporters are here in large numbers, with more than 500 having attended an organizational meeting last night and even more here today, said Matthew McDonald, a Waldo delegate and Paul supporter.
Those who support Paul are hoping to get at least 13 delegates, which would be a majority of those chosen for the national convention.
The chairman controls the meeting, including who can speak and what happens to procedural motions that are made. Because of that, the chairman can have a huge impact on the outcome of the convention and who is elected as delegates.
The upset is also a blow to Mitt Romney's campaign, which shows he has yet to be fully embraced by Maine Republicans.
Ron Paul Backers Take Over Alaska GOP - The presidential hopes, and long-term legacy within the Republican Party, of conservative-libertarian Ron Paul scored a major victory last Saturday, after backers of the Texas congressman were elected as party chairman and co-chairman at the Alaska state convention last week.
Russ Millette was elected the party’s chairman, beating out a candidate backed by outgoing chair Randy Ruedrich. The establishment Republican, who has run the Alaska GOP since 2000, decided to not run again. Debra Holle Brown, another Paul supporter, was voted in as co-chair.
At Nevada GOP convention Paul supporters oust two Romney backers from RNC - In a show of anti-establishment political power at Saturday's Nevada Republican Convention, GOP presidential candidate Ron Paul's supporters ousted two Mitt Romney backers from the Republican National Committee.
The vote came during a day of clashes between the two camps as Paul backers sought to install his people in the party hierarchy and elect as many Nevada delegates as possible to the national convention in Tampa, Fla.
RNC National Committeeman Bob List, a former Nevada governor, lost election to James Smack, the vice chairman of the state GOP and a longtime Paul supporter from Fallon. The vote was 932 for Smack and 623 for List.
RNC National Committeewoman Heidi Smith lost to Diana Orrock, one of Paul's backers. They have been taking control of the Clark County GOP for the past year. Carol Del Carlo of Incline Village also was in the running. Orrock got 902 votes to 429 for Del Carlo and 231 for Smith.
Each state has a female and male RNC representative on the committee, which runs the national Republican Party, a key duty in 2012 when the White House is at stake as well as control of the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives.
The new RNC committeeman and committeewoman won't begin serving their four-year terms until after the national GOP convention in August, when they'll be formally installed.
But having Paul supporters at the RNC could expand the Texas congressman's influence beyond the 2012 campaign as he promotes smaller government and more liberties.
Ron, Rand Paul hold joint tea party rally in Austin, Texas - Republican Presidential hopeful Ron Paul is teaming up with son Rand for what organizers promise will be a "massive" rally at the Texas Capitol.
The national Tea Party Express is sponsoring the [May 6th] event...
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