Friday, April 15, 2016

Republican leaders consider rewriting convention rules

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The Republican National Committee is expected to debate a proposal next week that would dramatically shift the balance of power at this summer’s convention — and impose a new rulebook for selecting the party's nominee.
The proposal, which will top the agenda during a meeting of the Rules panel at the RNC’s annual spring meeting in Hollywood Beach, Fla., would fundamentally alter how the convention is conducted, further empowering the delegates to determine the course of the proceedings.

It amounts to not just a changing of the rules but of the rulebook itself, with far-reaching implications, potentially impacting whether party insiders will be able to draft a so-called “white knight” — someone currently not running who would play the role of savior at a deadlocked convention.

Some are reluctant to support it – or any drastic sudden change to the party’s rules for that matter – out of concern for the perception that it would provide an advantage to some potential nominees over others.
“If people are really serious about rule changes they could have made them in the last three-and-a-half years,” said Ron Kaufman, an RNC member from Massachusetts who also sits on the Rules panel. “If people try to start change rules now, it’s going to be interpreted as anti-this person or anti-that person. I’m not sure that’s such a good thing.”
Tabling the proposal, Yue warned, would reignite fears that the party isn’t doing taking the steps it needs to prove that it’s being open and fair.

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