The Republican Party on Thursday is unveiling a website to educate the media and the public on the rules of contested presidential nominating convention.Granted, the subtext of some of the copy on the site is "Don't blame the RNC if Trump doesn't win! We don't make the rules!"
The move is the latest concession by GOP officials that the party is close to holding its first contested convention since 1976....
"ConventionFacts.gop is a tool for voters to learn about convention delegates, rules, and how the overall process works in a simple, easy to understand format," RNC Chairman Reince Priebus said in a statement provided to the Washington Examiner. "Conventions are democracy in action and our Party's gathering in Cleveland will be an exciting, transparent, and fair process."
Who Decides the Rules for the 2016 Republican National Convention?Still, the message is "Don't have enough delegates for a first-ballot victory, Donald? Sorry -- you might not win":
The convention delegates decide.
A week before the Convention, the 2016 Convention Rules Committee must convene to put together a package of rules to recommend for consideration by all delegates.
Delegates from each state and territory elect two representatives from within their own delegations to the Convention Rules Committee -- 112 delegates in total.
The Convention Rules Committee, after debate and discussion, adopts by majority vote a package of recommended rules that moves to the convention floor.
Once a majority of the convention delegates adopt the report, the rules become the permanent rules governing that Convention.
That package, called a Rules Report, is adopted by the Convention Rules Committee by majority vote....
What is the RNC’s Role in Deciding the Convention Rules?
The RNC plays a purely administrative role at Covention, ensuring that the rules and process are carried out in a transparent manner.
What Happens in an Open Convention?Yes, the site is passive-aggressive. (Subtext: "Hey, it won't be our fault if the delegates -- in a totally grassroots way -- choose someone other than the leading candidate.") But Priebus is preparing us for a brawl. If he ever wanted to avoid that, it seems to me he's not even trying anymore. So don't be surprised if someone other than Donald Trump emerges as the Republican nominee.
An open convention only occurs if a candidate fails to secure a majority of bound delegates during the primary and caucus process and is unable to win enough unbound delegates to obtain 1,237 delegate votes.
If that is the case, we will have an open and transparent convention where delegates -- empowered and selected by the grassroots -- will elect the nominee for our Party.