August 28th, 2012
08:21 PM ET
2 years ago

Ron Paul supporters put dent in unity at GOP convention

Tampa, Florida (CNN) - The always-vocal supporters of Ron Paul made one final push to support the Texas congressman's bid for the 2012 GOP presidential nomination Tuesday, and in the process made their displeasure at the GOP establishment known as official proceedings at the Republican National Convention got underway.

Paul's supporters shouted and booed when rules were adopted as part of the Republican Party's official platform that would hinder the kind of grassroots campaign that carried Paul to the national convention.

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The booing turned to cheers, however, when Paul stepped out onto the convention floor. Shouts of "let him speak" broke out from his supporters, who are fervently loyal to the libertarian congressman who is making his third and, he says, final bid for the presidency.

When their candidate received any delegates in the state-by-state roll call, Paul's supporters delivered loud cheers. However, convention organizers ultimately made a decision to stop calling out the Paul delegates.

More: Paul supporters protest through convention halls

That decision was met with furious cries from Paul's supporters, who said their voices weren't being heard at the Republican Party's official gathering. When states listed delegate votes for both Romney and Paul, party officials at the podium listed only the votes assigned to Romney, who secured enough delegates Tuesday to officially clinch the GOP nomination.

At one point, delegates from Maine walked off the convention floor in protest of a Republican National Committee decision to replace 10 of the 20 delegates Paul had secured in the state. That move prevented Maine from submitting Paul's name for nomination.

"I wanted to see the chairman keep it fair," Tom Bronza, a delegate and Ron Paul supporter from Pennsylvania, told CNN. "I just wanted to see the yeas and nays on the rolls. I knew it would be close. I wanted to record the numbers and wanted the chair to announce it. He didn't. I am disappointed in that. But that's the way the cards fell."

Bronza said the treatment from national Republicans toward Paul supporters had him seriously weighing whether he would vote for Mitt Romney in November.

"The way I was treated here today, I felt like I was picked on a lot by a number of different people, so I'm not too happy about that, and you know, if I was well received and no shenanigans, I would have considered it in November," Bronza said.


Filed under: 2012
soundoff (308 Responses)
  1. edward

    Ron Paul supporters can vote for Gary Johnson, he does carry mostly the same message.

    August 28, 2012 10:55 pm at 10:55 pm |
  2. Bill

    Shows that freedom and liberty aren't very important to the GOP. Supporting the financial industry with an activist Federal Reserve Bank pouring $Trillions, supporting the Military and Defense industries by pouring $Trillions into pointless wars, catering to the religious right by banning gay marriage and all abortions – that's what the GOP stands for now.

    Ron Paul was the one major Republican candidate who believed in freedom, limited government, and individual liberty.

    Time to switch to Libertarian Party and vote for Gary Johnson if you care about freedom and liberty.

    August 28, 2012 10:55 pm at 10:55 pm |
  3. Dave

    No Surprises, still whining about losing that election? All liberals do is whine whine whine. If it were up to you, they would still be doing recounts to this day...or at least until Gore got a recount that he liked.

    August 28, 2012 10:56 pm at 10:56 pm |
  4. EricCT

    The response to Christie's speech is really sad. He said beforehand that he needed to make a Gettysburg Address level of speech. The muted applause from his most ardent supporters says that he didn't move them.

    August 28, 2012 10:57 pm at 10:57 pm |
  5. Ralf The Dog

    You are free to vote for the person who we tell you to vote for. Please check with the thought police before entering a voting place.

    August 28, 2012 10:57 pm at 10:57 pm |
  6. edward

    Why isn't anyone talking about the Libertarian party?

    August 28, 2012 10:58 pm at 10:58 pm |
  7. Dave

    Bill, the Republican party stands for a whole lot of us. What do the Democrats stand for except for self-interest. Most of the most intolerant bigotted people I know are liberal Democrats. The liberal definition of intolerance is "Someone who disagress with me". Guess that would make you a liberal there Billy.

    August 28, 2012 11:00 pm at 11:00 pm |
  8. Chris

    These Romney folk are so thick headed. What is this get aligned with Mitt crap to beat Obama? I'll vote for what I believe in and Mitt can't deliver on those issues. So why would I get behind Mittens? Why should any of us get behind something we don't believe in? Just because we want Obama out doesn't mean we should sacrifice our principles. No Ron Paul people, Gary Johnson people or level headed Independent voter will roll over and get behind him and that will lose Mitt the election and for good reason. He is too much of the same and shame on the Republican Party for not seeing this. Way to nominate a guy that couldn't beat that pathetic McCain candidate 4 years ago.

    August 28, 2012 11:01 pm at 11:01 pm |
  9. patiat

    The GOP is base. Big tent, my eye.

    August 28, 2012 11:04 pm at 11:04 pm |
  10. Mark Baker

    Ron Paul needs to Run Independent. That will choke the GOP as a warning shot and force them to lose the election.

    August 28, 2012 11:04 pm at 11:04 pm |
  11. Ted

    I knew the minute the tea party was taken over by the neoconservatives it would be down hill from there. The majority of the tea party folks I've met were fiscal conservatives and social liberals. When the social conservatives started pushing their religion and morality through law, I knew the tea party was being dismantled and driven by special interest groups. Ron Paul started the tea party.

    This spectacle at the RNC goes to show that the select special interests will squash any form of dissent, including changing their own rules to get their way. Are they delusional? Don't they know they cannot win without the Independent/Paul voters? I'm sorry but I cannot force myself to vote for the lesser of two evils. I think I'm seriously considering voting for Gary Johnson even if it means a win for the current administration.

    August 28, 2012 11:06 pm at 11:06 pm |
  12. Ben

    Ron lost. Pack up and go home, like you should have done months ago when it was obvious Mitt was getting the nomination. Then man up and try again in 4 years instead of crying like a bunch of babies and effectively trying to sabotage your claimed parties' nominee

    August 28, 2012 11:06 pm at 11:06 pm |
  13. skatealex2

    The GOP is shooting themselves in the foot disenfranchising Ron Paul supporters. Ron Paul had the most enthusiastic support of any candidate and Romney lost the chance to have their backing. It looks like there's a good chance Obama is gonna be winning this year. Changing the rules last minute to block out Ron Paul delegates is pretty unAmerican if you think about it, no matter who you support for President.

    August 28, 2012 11:06 pm at 11:06 pm |
  14. Shakira

    Wow the GOP clamping down on dissent...who would have thought lol

    August 28, 2012 11:07 pm at 11:07 pm |
  15. Joshua Ludd

    So, the GOP wants to stop organization like Paul's and wants to stop people from voting with their needless voter ID laws that stop voter fraud that is either so incredibly rare as to not be a real problem or that simply doesn't exist.

    August 28, 2012 11:08 pm at 11:08 pm |
  16. Dave

    The only reason that the media reported on ron Paul at the convention is they cling to anything that is damaging against Republicans. If Ron Paul had his day and it went smoothly, the media would not have reported it. And when the media reports something, the liberal sheep just bah bah baaah.

    August 28, 2012 11:08 pm at 11:08 pm |
  17. Tall Tree NAV

    I don't agree with all of Ron Paul's platform stances, but he was the only person running for the presidency who had any real integrity. He says what he means, and he means what he says. It's sad, but not at all shocking, that he never had a chance – only disingenous special interest hacks have a chance in this system – yes, I'm talking about Romney AND Obama.

    August 28, 2012 11:11 pm at 11:11 pm |
  18. Rob

    If the GOP leadership's treatment of the Paul delegates leads to Ron Paul running a third party candidacy, they will see the person to whom they should direct blame for such a development in their bathroom mirrors.

    August 28, 2012 11:11 pm at 11:11 pm |
  19. Strangways

    Gosh "Dave" – then you're an ultra conservative, afraid of women, self-centerd, wealthy, repressed & joyless male? that's what the Republican party represents these days.

    August 28, 2012 11:12 pm at 11:12 pm |
  20. Clay S. Conrad

    By alienating the Paul voters, the GOP has given most of the swing states to Obama. Paul voters will tend to vote for Gary Johnson, or stay home - cutting 5% or more off the GOP total, depending on the state. That can easily be enough to lose a number of swing states.

    Anyone who thinks that libertarian-leaning republicans are going to support a corporatist tool like Rmoney is blind, insane, or just willfully ignorant.

    August 28, 2012 11:15 pm at 11:15 pm |
  21. Nagiom

    Wow, the GOP is even suppressing the vote in their own party.

    August 28, 2012 11:16 pm at 11:16 pm |
  22. Marc

    No matter if you agree or disagree with Ron Paul, as a Canadian watching this whole thing turn out the way it's turning out, you Americans should be rioting like there's no tomorrow, EVERY American. This is the abuse and misuse of the American democratic system. All presidential candidates should have FAIR and EQUAL chances at becoming President. Instead, you have your media (like CNN) who is utterly bias and pro-Romney. If the media portrayed each candidate equally they would all have a fair chance and you wouldn't have the Ron Paul supporters being mad. But seriously keeping Ron Paul out of this convention and taking a big crap on his followers is very offensive and I'M NOT EVEN AMERICAN! You Americans need to wake the heck up and do something about what's going on! Your media is biased and SHOULD NOT BE! Even for the pro-Romney and anti-Ron Paul's, you ALL should be ashamed of how the media and how the political system treating all you of Americans. They are picking YOUR candidate for you. Speak UP, this is a democracy, where the PEOPLE vote and have the voice and power to change the country, instead you have the media telling you who to vote for and being bias it's blatantly obvious.

    August 28, 2012 11:16 pm at 11:16 pm |
  23. Anonymous

    Ron Paul value and Paul Ryan are opposite. If I am not mistake, Ron Paul mentioned in one of the debate about beware of Military–industrial complex while Paul Ryan believes in cutting the food stamp to support the increase in defense budget spending.

    By GOP treating his supporter like this, it draws people attention to Ron Paul. Even if he does not win the election, he get his belief across and that will live on. Aside from bashing Obama, I am not even sure where Romney stands.

    The GOP also forget the public loves the underdog.

    August 28, 2012 11:20 pm at 11:20 pm |
  24. The_Mick

    "...a Republican National Committee decision to replace 10 of the 20 delegates Paul had secured in the state." This, the Tea Party threatening any GOP Politician who would dare compromise (the heart of any democracy) in Congress, the Tea Party cursing and threatening Democratic Congressmen. Has the USA ever had anything closer to Nazi Party Behavior and its Brown Shirts?

    August 28, 2012 11:21 pm at 11:21 pm |
  25. Zwei Stein

    The GOP Gestapo got Ron Paul, his supporters and others of the GOP who were concerned with their own Party's protocol.

    August 28, 2012 11:21 pm at 11:21 pm |
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