Tuesday, June 19 2012 - 07:08 PM
Ron Paul convention delegates file
Ron Paul convention delegates file suit to vote freely
June 19, 2012
Santa Ana, CA.
Last week, 123 Republican convention delegates from seven western states filed suit with the 9th circuit federal court seeking an opinion from the court that would free them from their bound pledge to vote for Mitt Romney and instead allow them to vote their own personal opinions. The delegates who support Ron Paul, but many of which are bound to support Mitt Romney, also sued the RNC, its chairman and all seven GOP state chairs within the 9th circuit.
The 2012 Republican Party nominating convention will be held August 27, 2012 in Tampa, Florida. Any court ruling would have to come before that date to have any impact. Currently, the 123 plaintiffs insist they are the victims of intimidation at the hands of GOP leaders and officials who they claim are coercing them into supporting Mitt Romney over their personal objections.
As reported by Courthouse News Service, the complaint states, ‘Plaintiffs come to Federal Court to seek the guidance of the court regarding the federal question as to whether plaintiffs are free to vote their conscience on the first and all ballots at the federal election known as the Republican National Convention, or whether plaintiffs are bound to vote for a particular candidate as instructed by defendants’ state party bylaws, or state laws, or the preference of political operatives seeking affidavits of loyalty to a particular candidate under penalty of perjury.”
In many cases, the Ron Paul delegates claim they are being forced to sign ‘loyalty oaths’ to Mitt Romney before the state party will certify them as credentialed delegates in Tampa. The plaintiffs describe the penalty for violating the loyalty oath and voting for someone other than Mitt Romney at the national convention as being intimidatingly harsh, as well as illegal. The complaint reads, ‘This harassment included the use of violence, intimidating demands that delegates sign affidavits under penalty of perjury with the threat of criminal prosecution for perjury as well as financial penalties and fines if the delegate fails to vote as instructed by defendants rather than vote the delegate’s conscience…’
The plaintiffs’ suit cites section 42 of the United States Code insisting it is illegal to force someone to vote for a specific Presidential candidate at a national nominating convention. Quoting the US Code, their argument states, ‘No person, whether acting under the color of law or otherwise, shall intimidate, threaten, coerce, or attempt to intimidate, threaten, or coerce any other person for the purpose of interfering with the right of such person to vote or to vote as he may choose, or of causing such other person to vote for, or not to vote for, any candidate for the office of president.’
Accusation of widespread election fraud
The report from Courthouse News also includes quotes from the lawsuit alleging specific cases of election fraud among a number of GOP state primaries and caucuses. The plaintiffs accuse the Republican state leaderships of rigging the various primary contests to insure Mitt Romney’s victory.
The suit states, ‘Plaintiffs allege there has been a systematic campaign of election fraud at state conventions, including programming a voting machine in Arizona to count Ron Paul votes as Governor Romney votes; ballot stuffing, meaning the same person casting several ballots in several states; altering and falsifying ballot totals for each candidate; the use of violence at several state conventions; altering procedural rules to prevent votes from being cast for Ron Paul…’
Setting its sights on the national RNC, the federal suit alleges national GOP officials, ‘intimidate delegates in support of the RNC’s position that Governor Romney is the nominee of the party when Governor Romney does not have the minimum number of delegates and no vote has yet taken place and the convention has not begun.’
More Ron Paul delegates step forward
Immediately after the suit was filed in California’s federal court, Courthouse News reported an additional 40 Republican delegates came forward asking to be a party to the lawsuit. If allowed to enter into the suit, it would bring the total to 163 GOP delegates from 7 western states suing to be able to vote for Ron Paul at the August 27 Republican nominating convention.