Categorized | American Politics

Last-Ditch Rebellion Against Donald Trump Fails

Posted on 21 July 2016 by admin

Chaos erupted on the floor of the Republican National Convention Monday as fervent opponents of Donald Trump fought and lost an ugly, public rebellion to derail him.

New Hampshire delegate Gordon Humphrey, who has been working with the Delegates Unbound and Free the Delegates groups, tried to force party leaders on Monday to approve their rules for the convention on a roll-call vote, rather than a voice vote as is normally done.

The idea was that with a public roll call, a majority of delegates might defect.

“Donald Trump is so ignorant of anything that he hasn’t a clue what is going on here in general or in detail,” said Humphrey, a former senator who backed Ohio Gov. John Kasich during the primary season.

The bid for a roll-call vote failed, but caused an ugly moment in Trump’s march to the nomination.

The unrest began when Arkansas Rep. Steve Womack took up the resolution to approve the rules and asked for a voice vote, as the anti-Trumpers lined up behind behind microphones waiting to demand a roll-call vote. Many delegates cried “Aye!” but were soon followed by a roar of “No!” from the crowd. Womack then declared “without objection” that it had passed ― even as delegates from Virginia, Utah and a handful of other states screamed in protest.

Virginia delegate Ken Cuccinelli led dozens of his state’s delegates in chanting “point of order” and then “roll-call vote,” as Trump supporters in other states chanted “USA” and “We want Trump.”

Sen. John Barrasso (Wyo.), who was about to officiate the moment, did not take to the podium while the pro- and anti-Trump factions delivered their competing chants.

One delegate from Tennessee wearing a Trump button said, “I wish it came down to a fistfight. That would be easier for me.”

 “I have never seen anything like this. There’s no precedent for this,” Sen. Mike Lee (Utah) told reporters on the floor. “The podium has been abandoned. No one is standing at the podium. I want a roll-call vote.”

Humphrey and his cohort nearly got the vote because they had managed to get majorities of nine state delegations to ask for one. The rules required seven states to ask.

The Trump campaign and RNC leaders, though, demonstrated the power of holding the gavel. While the stage was empty, RNC officials apparently convinced enough delegates to rescind their demands, leaving just six states seeking the vote.

About 20 minutes later Womack reappeared, redid the voice vote, again declared that it had passed, but this time offered the Utah delegation the opportunity to ask for the roll-call vote. He informed them, however, of the delegates who had changed their minds and had withdrawn their support for a roll-call vote ― dropping them below the threshold they needed. “Accordingly, the chair has found insufficient support for a recorded vote,” he said.

“That was the plan that was developed over the course of the day,” one top RNC official said on condition of anonymity.

Although C-SPAN reported that state delegates from Iowa and Colorado had staged walkouts in the wake of the voice vote, the state pens for Iowa and Colorado were never fully emptied in dramatic fashion.

However, a group of delegates did at least try to spark a mass walkout through the time-tested organizing tool of a group text.

Eric Minor, a delegate from Washington, which was rumored to be considering a walkout too, told reporters that all the Trump opponents wanted was a vote.

Humphrey had said the roll-call vote would have given him and like-minded Republicans one last chance to empower their fellow delegates to get rid of Trump.

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