In reviewing information coming out of the RNC Convention last week and other primary election related information, I came across an article by an author from Arlington, Texas entitled, "If You are Going to Kill The King". Not being quite sure where the author was headed with this line, I dove in and read what I found to be, a very insightful view of the aftermath of what I had earlier called "The PaulBot Revolution" in the weeks leading up to the RPT and RNC conventions.
Author Adrian Murray makes an interesting comparison between the attempt by many of the Ron Paul campaign to "take over" the Republican Party in order to nominate Ron Paul from the convention floor, to that of minority members of a corporate board trying to overthrow the board of directors of a corporation. He also takes a look at the Party's reaction with rule changes and other potential downstream consequences.
It certainly brings to mind the saying from "The King and I", "If you are going to kill the King, make sure he is dead." Otherwise you certainly might not enjoy the consequences.
I encourage you to take a look at this article and reply with your thoughts on this matter and how it might impact both the November General Election and future convention delegate selection processes. It has was originally published on the website Conservative-USA.com and is reposted here with the author's permission.
If You are Going to Kill The King
By Adrian Murray, author of Common Ground America and Crank Up the Volume.
Several months ago, as the Ron Paul campaign’s strategy to win the Republican nomination by stacking the various state delegations with their own supporters began to roll out, I made the observation in a post that I believed this strategy to be an unwise idea. As I said at the time: it would not work, was doomed to failure and would invite blow-back from the GOP which would only serve to isolate what I considered then (and still consider) to be an important, vital and desirable faction of the party.
For making what I saw as a fairly obvious observation, I was roundly pilloried.
We’re working within the rules, I was told. Just watch what happens when you bend those rules, I warned. Fey, came the response. We are the people.
No organization, be it a political party, a social club or a public corporation, would tolerate a move by a minority to subvert the will of the majority. The annals of corporate lore are filled with attempts by minority shareholders to remove boards of directors and replace them with members more to their liking. Such efforts generally end in failure and the result is often a minority with even less influence than before. Corporate managers are uniquely skilled in interpreting by-laws in their favor.
It should come as no surprise that what is true in the corporate world is equally true in the political one (not to mention the animal kingdom, but why complicate things?) Both arenas symbolize power and, human nature being what it is, no one wants to easily surrender power.
What we saw play out this week in Tampa at the Republican convention was a foregone conclusion. A political party that participates in a system in which untold tens of millions of dollars are expended by candidates seeking its nomination for the presidency is not going to sit back and watch the results of the popular vote be usurped by a minority faction, no matter how skillful the use of parliamentary procedure. It just will not be allowed to happen, cries of foul notwithstanding. While the outcome of this nomination was never in doubt, the GOP leadership clearly had an eye on 2016.
The blow-back this time affected not only the Ron Paul supporters who carried out this delegate strategy, but the entire grassroots, which nearly saw – and could still see – its influence upon the party apparatus severely curtailed. True, the Rules Committee over-played its hand with its hamfisted rule change proposal which would have permitted future presidential candidates to veto delegates selected by the state parties. (The proposed changes would have had no affect on delegates to the 2012 convention, despite some out-of-left-field assertions that if the rule had passed as proposed the delegates this week could be unseated and replaced. Nothing could have been further from the truth and reporting such inaccuracies as fact is irresponsible at best. It’s hard enough to deal with these issues and explain them to the electorate without devolving into half-baked conspiracy theories.) Fortunately, a grassroots revolt forced the leadership to back down and a reprieve of sorts was granted, but the specter of a future rules change by the RNC remains. This is the inevitable result of any power play. As the unattributed quote goes, if you are going to kill the king, kill the king.
One does wonder, though, how the GOP would be expected to respond if in 2016, instead of a principled and popular figure such as Dr. Paul, an insurgent delegate- stacking tactic were to be carried out by someone who represented a clear threat to the future of the party. The road-map has already been revealed for a David Duke or somebody equally toxic to follow. State party rules, which had evolved for decades since the days of closed door smoke-filled rooms, has evolved into a system which, with varying degrees of success, had sought to include the electorate in the process. Because such an openness opened the door to groups determined to use the rules for their own benefit, the state parties were caught flat-footed. They relied upon often convoluted and controversial interpretations of their own rules. Again, highly predictable.
For that reason alone, you can expect a plethora of rules changes to roil the various state parties in the years to come.
Those today who are decrying the aggressive posture of the RNC should take some comfort in the fact that they did, eventually, listen to the grassroots activists from throughout the party who objected to the rule change. There is some victory in that, even though the RNC retains a hole card that could enable them to reverse course in the future. It will take some diligence on the part of party activists to prevent that from happening.
At some point in the future, undoubtedly after the election, the subject of delegate selection will again come up and those with interests in preserving a status quo which grants states autonomy had better be prepared to engage in that debate. In recent years there has developed several schools of thought: that delegates should be apportioned to candidates based on percentage of popular vote; that winner-take-all will speed up the nominating process; or that delegates should be free to support the candidate of their choice. While it seems to me deceptively fraudulent to the public at large to have a secondary selection process that could essentially negate the popular vote and thus the purpose in having a primary election in the first place, I’m open to listening to the arguments from proponents of unbound delegates about why the consensus of the electorate should be ignored.
Whether in business, politics or life, one must never forget the essential law of nature: for each action there is an equal and opposite reaction.