19 votes

Can Delegates Abstain from voting at the National Convention even if they are bound to a certain candidate?

It seems that Teddy Roosevelt ordered his delegates to abstain from voting for Taft in 1912:

"He (Roosevelt) ordered his delegates to abstain from voting in rebuke of Taft's "steamroller tactics".

Maybe delegates who support Ron Paul in states where they are bound in early rounds of voting should consider this strategy to keep Romney from reaching 1144.

They could then vote for Ron Paul in later Rounds.

Trending on the Web

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

No need to abstain



Show me in the RNC rules where a credentialed delegate is bound to vote for anyone once they hit the floor of the RNC convention. (Hint: it's not in there. Also, the RNC is not a law enforcement agency nor a state party.)

Not only is it not in there but the RNC rules have two safeguards protecting national delegates votes: 1) "the unit rule shall not be enforced" - that means that the delegation chair can not enforce a delegate's vote on a delegate. 2) If any delegate feels their vote was recorded in error they can ask the parliamentarian or secretary to change their recorded vote.

Can a bound delegate abstain?

Yes, he certainly can.

What happens if he does?

According to Article XVII, Section B (pg. 15) of the Oregon State Republican Bylaws:

"Should a delegate or alternate refuse to cast his/her vote in accordance with this pledge, as required by both the Bylaws of the Oregon Republican Party Central Committee and the Oregon Revised Statues, the Chairman of the Oregon delegation to the National Convention shall report to the convention floor that delegate’s vote in accordance with such laws and rules until such time as that delegate is released from his/her pledge."


...in other words, if you refuse to vote, they vote for you.

Now, I don't know if this is unique to Oregon, or if other State Parties have similar rules.

"Alas! I believe in the virtue of birds. And it only takes a feather for me to die laughing."

US Supreme Court

Says that any state trying to discipline a delegate for "breaking" the state rules is a violation of the 1st amendment. Look it up. Wisconsin delegation - 1980

What I got from that rule is

What I got from that rule is that the chair from Oregon will tell the people on the floor how they are supposed to vote. Then again, this is not an Oregon state convention, this is a national convention and national party rules supersede state rules.

In the end, every RP delegate, whether bound or unbound, needs to inform the official campaign of their state that they represent and the candidate they are bound to, etc. This needs to be done as soon as it becomes clear that you have been selected to go to Tampa. Don't wait to see if you have the money to go. Let them know if you have the money to go or if that is an issue. The sooner the official campaign knows, the sooner they can work out any last minute changes. In other words, we shouldn't go to Tampa without Ron Paul knowing exactly how many first round votes he should expect, how many abstentions he should expect, and how many stealth delegates still plan to vote Romney or another in the first or subsequent rounds.


I know one thing

No delegates are bound to vote the VP choice... Ron Paul with his band of delegates will have to reckoned with on this choice... This is going to be the best convention so far in my lifetime!!!!

It's time! Rand Paul 2016!

"Truth, Justice, and the American Way!"


I never even thought of that.

"Alas! I believe in the virtue of birds. And it only takes a feather for me to die laughing."



To arms! To arms! The Redcoats are coming!

Bound and Unbound delegates

Unbound delegates can vote for who every they wish. Bound delegates are suppose to vote on the first round for who ever they are bound unless their candidate drops out or fails to receive 35% of the vote then they become free agents and can for who ever. As far as I know no one has ever had charges brought against them for not voting for the candidate they are bound to. If you are and Alternate delegate which I am you have to be moved up to delegate status by a caucus.If the caucus is full of RP supporters then it is obvious that the Alternates (RP supporters) will be the Alternates to move up to delegate status. Personally if I were bound to Romney, and seeing how the Republican Party has hooked and crooked RP, I would get a bad case of diarrhea when the first round of voting come up. Make no mistake the Romney people will try and intimidate the RP supporters by any means possible. If any are on here I would like for them to know that this is one person they will not intimidate in Tampa.


I dont think your absence will matter. Your state Chair will yell the votes that are bound. I believe the only way to fix that is for the RHINO state Chair to have a problem with the toilet, and a good alternate RP supporter is acting State Chair. Of course 3 non RP state Leaders may have to have the squirts before you have the chance.

Don't listen to any BS comments here if you are a delegate.

Contact (Official) state or campaign coordinators to find out the plan in the coming months. Do not rely on comments here. Also DO NOT POST the plans if you happen to receive/know that info. There are spies.....

I'm not a conspiracy theorist, I'm just well-informed

I am sure that will work

Oh sure contact that pack of wolves and see what it gets you. Bottom line if you are a delegate then you hold the keys and why give a rats rear end who knows it are who knows what you are going to do. Oh sure the Republican Party will blow a gasket if they think you are rooking them but again who cares. One thing for sure they can not complain too much because they sure have not played on the up and up. When you have two candidates running for the nomination and the Republican Party anoints one and then completely bashes the other then something is very wrong with the Republican Party. They the Republican Party wants to tell you and I and ever American who to go with. Something is bad wrong with that as far as I am concerned. No wonder Romney wins the beauty contest, look at how the Republican Party and the Main Stream Media pump him up to the American people while at the same time black balling Ron Paul. I say do anything you can at the National convention to get RP the nomination. If they had played fair from the get go then it would be different but no they did not want to play fair so now we will not play fair. You have to fight fire with fire.

The campaign, not the GOP

He said to contact the campaign, NOT the GOP. Big difference.

plus ONE-ing this, but...

...I wish I could give it plus a HUNDRED!! (one of best comments EVER here??)

EVERY actual expert says no.

EVERY actual expert says no. Even the few people who have SOME clue agree that they would simply use an alternate. Meaning to prevent Romney from getting any delegates, you would have to have more than half of his supporters be stealth...which is simply not hte case. Romney was not like Santourm in getting his delegates. The vast majority are his own.

And again...Notice the campaign is NOT going along with this plan. Because unlike some of his supporters, Ron Paul is not a compelte idiiot. He knows that this is not about one man that some people have pathetically deified. He knows this is about hte FUTURE of his ideas.

HE also knows thatr it would fail miserably, and hurt his legacy even more. On the VERY unlikely chance it worked (like 0.000000000000001%) then all the Romney voters (which outnumber Paul's 4 to 1) would be pissed off at being disenfranchised (and they would have a great point) would refuse to vote for Paul in November. Hence, Obama would get an electoral college sweep. In fact, Romney might top Paul with write ins.

And before you point to polls showing Ron Paul within the margin of error against Romney, and claim that he is winning...realize that that poll is if Ron Paul won in a way that the voters felt was legitimate. Take away that legitimacy and it wouldn't even be close. Obama would probably get 65-70% of the vote. And this would make Ron Paul's last election be a total embarrassment, tarnishing his career.

And then what would happen? Well...the rules would be changed for 2016 to prevent voters from being disenfranchised again. (even if this was attempted these changes would be made.) EVERY state would bind delegates for multiple rounds. Candidates would have to win 5 states' POPULAR vote to be considered...and there would likely be fewer caucuses. Meanwhile, unless ALL Ron Paul related candidates (such as Rand) were going to go third party, they may as well apply for jobs at the local Home Depot. Because their political careers would be over and Home Depot is always hiring. Every single member of Congress that the Tea Party got voted in in 2010 would be gone in November. Every governor would be gone in 2014 and every member of the Senate would be gone in 2016.

But sure..if you want to sacrific everything that Ron Paul has been trying to accomplish jsut for the MAN rather than the idea...go for it. But don't think you are doing Ron Paul and favors. You know damn well how much you would complain if Romney had stealth delegates in Paul's camp (which he does, by the way) and THEY abstained. So don't make Ron Paul supporters look hypocritical.

Truthbearer's picture

Not even worth...


Your attacks are littered with your ineptitude to even spell right. Your words and energy are a waste of time here.

Perhaps you will do the right thing and just go back over to mittneecentral where you came from and they profess at this kind of useless baseless Hagalian rhetoric.

Kind of funny that there are more Ron Paul supporters watching you there, than those who are willard supporters on line. lOl...


Hagalian dialectic for all to understand:



Bad Troll. Bad! -1 for you.


this guy above is a fraud and needs a IP ban!

he is member since 6 days and all his comments are of negative nature.
He is here to derail our efforts. Im dumbfounded on how he can post such an amount of negative derailing comments without beeing already banned.

Or let him do his stupid stuff to show how a (probably paid) troll operates?

Do we need a troll thread ? (tough may look like a witch hunt lol and some people are maybe RP supporters but totally negative by nature..)

Truthbearer's picture

We have asked...

...Michael to protect us from these obvious negative detractors from truth and attacks on the Ron Paul Campaign.


According to the included link, Teddy Roosevelt says you can...

Plus alternate delegates are not on standby at the Convention. They are selected in case the delegates do not make the trip. No one would know about the "abstain" vote until the actual National Convention occurs.
Alternate delegates are not going to pay for a weeklong trip to Florida just to hang around and wait to be called on. Most people don't have that much money sitting around.

Sounds like pure FUD.

"EVERY actual expert says no. Even the few people who have SOME clue agree that they would simply use an alternate."

Have any sources to back this up?

Disregard government. Acquire liberty.

Not the way it works.

I am quite sure that the National Convention works along the same guide lines as the District and State Conventions. First step taken is to find out how many delegates actually showed up. If you are a hundred or so short then you fill those spots with Alternate Delegates then the voting starts. I was a District Delegate and that is exactly how it worked.


Being Absent and Abstaining your vote are two totally dif things!

To arms! To arms! The Redcoats are coming!

Can anyone show proof

in the rules that says abstaining is allowed. Joe makes a good case but I'd like to see it for myself and I think we owe it to everyone and Dr.Paul to be 100% correct in this.

Patriot Cell #345,168
I don't respond to emails or pm's.
Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution, inevitable.

Today's GOP

will squeal like stuck pigs, if this is tried. Not that I really care two squeals what the GOP establishment thinks, just that we need to be prepared how they will play the game. They will do everything to take their ball and go home.

They will do all in their power to discredit and disparage RP supporters - namecalling, backstabbing, rule changing and the like.

Be warned - we are crashing their party by coming through the back door; it won't be through the front, that much is clear. This, despite the fact that we're the ones spicing up the punch bowl.

We need to remember

that we have two die in the woods RP supporters on the rules committee in Tampa. That will make a huge difference. You are right they will cry like a cut cat but as you who cares how loud they cry. I for one sure don't.

"two die in the woods RP supporters"

...hmmm, LOL.


"Alas! I believe in the virtue of birds. And it only takes a feather for me to die laughing."

then I will start spreading the 10 crazy things

Mormans believe in.

Do you want to know how to get Churches and preachers and pastors who get lots of donations, ask them why they would support Romney if he believes in such things, Christians everywhere will drop those pastors, churches etc., that back Romney. In a heartbeat you will see a huge demand to drop Romney.

Sorry, all is fair in politics.

Truthbearer's picture

The truth...

Just say you came down with a really bad case of LIBERTY and

as a result are unable to vote. After the first vote when you're unbound, you may be able to deal with the overwhelming symptoms of freedom and go vote for whomever. ;)