-88 votes

Bound delegates cannot abstain

I'm very bummed but it appears bound delegates cannot abstain. These are the CA rules:

Each delegate to the Republican National Convention shall use his or her best efforts at the convention for the party's presidential nominee candidate from California to whom the delegate has pledged support until the person is nominated for the office of President of the United States by the convention, receives less than 10 percent of the votes for nomination by the convention, releases the delegate from his or her obligation, or until two convention nominating ballots have been taken. Thereafter, each delegate shall be free to vote as he or she chooses.... [
California Elections Code Section 6461.(c)]


It seems to me that abstaining would not be using his or her best efforts at the convention for the party's presidential nominee candidate from California to whom the delegate has pledged support.

I presume the rules are about the same in other states with bound delegates.

Oh well. I was hoping enough of Romney's bound delegates would be stealth Paul delegates who would abstain on the first ballot to keep him from getting a majority.

Update with wording from other states from Shazad:


Each delegate to the national convention shall use his best efforts at the convention for the party's presidential nominee candidate who received the greatest number of votes in the presidential preference election ... until the candidate releases the delegate ... withdraws from the race or until one convention nominating ballot .... [Arizona Revised Statutes 16-243]


The delegates are bound to the candidate entitled to their vote until released.


Each nominee for election as a pledged Congressional District delegate or alternate delegate shall express a commitment to a qualifying Presidential candidate and agree to be bound to vote for that candidate on the first such roll-call unless released by such candidate, as required by law.
If there is a roll call vote for President at the Convention, all delegates and alternate delegates whose selection is made subject by the Plan to qualifying Presidential Primary Candidates defined by Section 4.2 of the Plan, shall vote on the first such roll call for that presidential candidate unless released by such candidate. (G.L. c.53, §70I)


b. Length of Commitment: A person who is elected as a delegate or alternate to the National Convention on the slate of a and who is assigned to a Presidential candidate by the State Convention Chairman to represent that particular Presidential candidate at the National Convention and who does not resign from the position is pledged to support that Presidential candidate at the National Convention until the candidate is nominated or until the delegate or alternate is released from the pledges as follows:
1. First (1st) nomination convention ballot: delegate or alternate shall be released from the pledge only in the event of death, withdrawal, or by decision of the candidate. For the first ballot taken at the National Convention to determine the nominee of the Republican Party for the office of President of the United States, the totals of the votes of the members of the Texas delegation shall be announced as they would have been if the individual delegates had been awarded to or designated for the respective candidates for such office on the Texas General Primary ballot in accordance with the statewide result of the of the voting for such candidates. No poll of the members of the delegation shall be taken for the announcement of the vote.
2. Second (2nd) nomination convention ballot: delegate or alternate may be released from the pledge by decision of the candidate;
3. Third (3rd) nominating convention ballot: delegate or alternate shall be released from the pledge if the candidate has failed to receive twenty percent (20%) or more of the total vote cast on the preceding ballot; or by the decision of the candidate;
4. Fourth (4th) and subsequent nominating convention ballots: delegates and alternates are released from any pledge.

New Jersey:

"The Delegate understands that he/she is bound by the results of the June 5th primary and must vote for [presidential candidate's name] on the first ballot at the national convention unless that candidate publicly announces that he/she no longer seeks the nomination." [Primary Election Petition to the Republican National Convention]

This is just a sampling, but every state is different. In some states it says explicitly that the delegate must/shall/is required to vote FOR the candidate. There may be some where it just says "cannot vote for anyone besides the candidate", though I haven't found it yet. Such an interpretation may be implied by some but in others it does explicitly state who the delegate must vote FOR, and not just who they can't vote AGAINST. In some states it mentions using your best efforts to support the candidate. Some states don't bind at all. Some states bind through one ballot, some through 2, some for all ballots. There may be some where it would be acceptable to abstain, but in others there would be penalties and the abstention might not even take effect.

Oregon Rules (Submitted by Micah_6_8 on Fri, 04/27/2012 - 01:50.)

From the Oregon Republican Party bylaws, Section XVII, Section B (http://www.oregonrepublicanparty.org/sites/default/files/ORP...):

Section B. Delegate Conduct at the Republican National Convention.
Candidates for delegate and alternate to the Republican National Convention must state which Presidential Preference Primary candidate they favor, and will be listed as running for one of the delegate positions assigned to that presidential candidate. Each person selected as a delegate or alternate shall sign a pledge that he/she shall vote at the National Convention for the candidate for the President of the United States he/she favors until the candidate is:
(1) nominated;
(2) receives less than 35% of the votes for nomination at the convention;
(3) releases the delegate from the pledge; or
(4) until two convention nominating ballots have been taken.
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.

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"Each delegate to the

"Each delegate to the Republican National Convention shall use his or her best efforts at the convention for the party's presidential nominee candidate from California to whom the delegate has pledged support"

I plan on putting forth my best effort to support Mitt Romney in Tampa, but alas, that might not be enough =/

Neither SHOULD bound delegates abstain!

They should VOTE FOR RON PAUL!

Reading comprehension

Sure would come in handy for the OP.

Bound delegates are not bound ...

Listen , a interesting note here .... Binding delegates don't have to be bound to the candidate that won the beauty contest . And Why ? Well simply because the Republican Party , like the Democratic Party ARE PRIVATE ORGANIZATIONS . They are about as Federal as Federal Express !

They are NOT affected by Federal Election Laws because, again , the Republican Party and Democratic Party are PRIVATE ORGANIZATIONS !

If a delegate votes their conscience , then what ' law' will punish them ? Why do you think that the state GOP's are telling delegates to sign affidavits ? That would be a law that could get them in trouble . But , they don't have to or be forced to sign a affidavit .

Why is this post quoting a

Why is this post quoting a poster on here that is a known Romney supporter?

And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honor.

Umm.... Federal law trumps party rules

“No person, whether acting under 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 other 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, Vice President, presidential elector, Member of the Senate, or Member of the House of Representatives, Delegates or Commissioners from the Territories or possessions, at any general, special, or primary election held solely or in part for the purpose of selecting or electing any such candidate." - 42 USC § 1971 - Voting Rights.

It later goes on to explain that this pertains to caucuses and conventions as well.

The is a REVOLUTION, not not your granny's election year. It will be primetime TV. Let's see if they want to disenfranchise voters watching, by pulling dirty tricks. Why not try? You will make history, or way or another.

It does not preclude abstension...

Bottom line is:

You cannot make someone take the action of voting UNLESS:

1. You hold a gun to their head.
2. You threaten consignment to a gulag.

Of course, those two things are not allowed in a free country which is what we supposedly are.

All bound delegates have three choices:

1. Abstain
2. Vote and vote for bound candidate
3. Vote and vote for another candidate. (Abuse will follow...)

This whole argument that bound delegate must vote and vote for is a sleight of hand designed to make people forget or be unaware of the option to abstain.

An "abstain" cannot be counted as a vote. Nor does it change the percentage base in results. It is simply a non-vote.

That's why we have conventions folks - a candidate can have all the delegate in the world - he or she still has to convince them to:

1. Cast a vote
2. Vote for them

It ain't over until the Martian lady sings.


Conservative AND Libertarian!!!

Let me please ask you

this. Who cares about states when they can not trump the rules of the RNC. Why do you keep printing what the states require? You just do not get it do you? What ever any states says does not matter period because they can not do away with the RNC rules period.
Here please read this and then go away.


Sharon Stone: "What are you

Sharon Stone: "What are you going to do, charge me with smoking?" (VIDEO)

Thomas Jefferson 1796, 1800, 1804; James Madison 1808, 1812; Ron Paul 1988, 2008, 2012; Rand Paul 2016.

This post is full of crap - because of Romney's Ponzi scheme

California does not trump National, sorry.

Bottom line, if you are bound, you must vote for the candidate you are bound to, but if you don't vote at all, it will be considered an abstention.

I would let every delegate know, that all you have to do is say this., "Due to RECENT developments and legal proceedings in a Ponzi Scheme Mitt Romney and his son are involved in, I will have to abstain in voting for a candidate at this time. I do not feel that it is in the best interest of The United States or it's citizens to help elect someone who could shortly be a convicted criminal".

NO , you don't have to vote for the candidate you are bound to

Okay , So I vote against the candidate i'm bound to ... What Law is there that will punish me ? Federal Law ? Nope ! The GOP and the Demo's are PRIVATE ORGANIZATIONS my friend . Federal Laws do not apply to these ' clubs ' . " You couldn't even give me a parking ticket" ! LOL

Bottom line

you do not have to vote for the candidate you are bound to. Read rule 38 and 37 Section (b) of the RNC rules. Can states trump the RNC rules? NO! This has already been settled in the U.S. Supreme Court.

Neither can RNC rules trump federal law

So good luck RNC trying to control thousands of people at the convention like the totalitarian thugs you are, you will lose.

Federal Laws Proving Binding of Delegates Is Illegal!


The federal laws are as follows:

11 CFR 100.2(e): ( http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/CFR-2011-title11-vol1/xml/CFR-2... ) Defining a national convention as a "Federal Election" for the purpose of electing a candidate for federal office. Which states:

“(e) Caucus or Convention. A caucus or convention of a political party is an election if the caucus or convention has the authority to select a nominee for federal office on behalf of that party.”


42 USC 1971 - Sec. 1971. Voting rights: ( http://us-code.vlex.com/vid/sec-voting-rights-19251307 ) Which states:

"No person, whether acting under 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 other 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"

The Republican party is a private party. A legal voter/delegate is also considered a private party. These private parties are separately governed by numerous federal and state laws (depending on their location).

The Republican National Convention; however, is a federal election made up of multiple private parties which serve to nominate a candidate for the office of the Presidency (which is a federal office position).

The Republican National Convention itself is a federal election bound by federal laws.

These two federal laws alone prove that no state law or private party rule can force an individual to vote against their own free will for any federal election. Period!

November 6th 2012 I voted for Dr.Ron Paul
"We must remember, elections are short-term efforts. Revolutions are long-term projects." ~ Ron Paul

a thousand

up votes to you :)


Let this post die for the

Let this post die for the love of God please, it's bull$hit


It does not specifically say you cannot abstain. It is not that hard just don't vote for Mitt at Tampa

Don't be bummed, just make

Don't be bummed, just make sure Paul wins California! Then it will be a mute point!

"Moot" point.

Not to be confused with a Newt point.

To be precise...

Nothing in those rules allows the chairman of a delegation to CHANGE the vote of any delegate!

He will of course control the mic as best he can, and say anything he might wish... better be prepared to fight to be heard!

Further, doing your best is not defined! Don't assume anything! Doing your best for a candidate might be entirely different for you as a delegate than for me as a delegate!

Bottom line... delegates vote! Chairs do not cast any vote but their own vote!

Chairs do not have any power of proxy, which the rules here lead sheeple and lemming delegates to believe!

Wake up folks. Get working to nominate Paul.

At the National Convention

the head knocker of a state can stand up and say "I pledge all delegates from my great state to Mitt Romney". Now that will work just fine until some one stands up and protest and says that being a delegate of that state they do not wish to vote for Romney. Right then and there they have to have a vote and the delegates can vote for who they choose according to the RNC rules. The only thing a delegate needs to consider is rule 38 and 37 Section (b) of the RNC and that state laws do not apply at the National Convention period. When you cross the Florida line you can completely throw out your state what ever rules.

Doing my "best" for Romney

Doing my "best" for Romney would be akin to doing my best to vote for Hitler if "bound" to him. In other words, it would be impossible for me to do so unless I wanted a complete psychological meltdown.

So the rule language actually says "vote" when referencing

a bound delegate?

For any DP'ers that are lawyers, or work with legalise language:

Can you please pull out any statement from the RNC that specifically says the 1st Round Vote whenever talking about bound delegates, is in fact not a "vote"?

^^Because logically if bound delegates cannot vote for another candidate under the RNC laws, then the bound delegates DO NOT VOTE!!! Bound delegates in the first round is simply a head count!!! Do you see what I'm saying here?

And, if the RNC legal language says "vote" in reference to 1st Round Bound Delegates, then this logically invalidates the restriction on a bound delegate, because it attempts to invalidate the very word "vote". "Vote" implies free will and/or choice!!

The RNC needs to change the language from "1st Round Vote" to "1st Round Head Count" whenever they reference bound delegates, if that's how they want to play it.

I heard National Convention

I heard National Convention rules trump state rules. Rule 38 of the Republican National Convention Rules.

Unit Rule
No delegate or alternate delegate shall be
bound by any attempt of any state or Congressional
district to impose the unit rule.


This is fascinating.

This is not a rule effecting or unbinding delegates from voting to match preference polls [in the first round]. What it trumps are winner-take-all state rules [i.e. Florida]. The outcome of enforcing rule38 is the mystery. Would it completely unbind all delegates previously bound by unit rule [i.e. turn them into something opposite, like Maine], or would it transform state delegations into reallocating to match preference polls, [or something else, or chaos]? Perhaps the smarter [unity] states will address this beforehand at their conventions.


Delegates MUST Ask Themselves What's More Important,

republican rules, or the country and it's Constitution !

Vote---Ron Paul !


Just to play it safe

the campaign should be ready to immediately proceed to a subsequent ballot to keep individual state parties from replacing any delegates that have not towed the line.

There are no politicians or bankers in foxholes.



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.

You left off...

most of the rule. Why? It's short:

"No delegate or alternate delegate shall be bound by any attempt of any state or Congressional district to impose the unit rule."

It says "attempt of any STATE or CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT". Does it prevent the RNC from imposing the rule since the RNC is not a state or congressional district?

You are risking other people's integrity, embarrassment and possibly legal costs by what appears to be an intentional obfuscation and hiding of information. :(

Consider this:

What is the purpose of Rule 38's existence? It is to restrict the actions of a STATE or a CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT. Specifically restricting them, and ONLY them, from imposing fiat binding.

It CANNOT be saying that rules for bound delegates are thrown out the window because they are covered and protected extensively in other RNC rules. There are also RNC rules that proxy in the individual state's codes and laws concerning the party delegate process. Why would you insert a clause restricting certain groups from something that is not allowed at all? The unit rule is mentioned NOWHERE else.

Also, a political party nor its convention delegates and leaders are the "state" or a "congressional district". Does Rule 38 really prevent the state party, or the RNC itself for that matter, from invoking the unit rule? I think it plainly doesn't. It restricts the state and the republican party in a state but neither are the state. State parties are not mentioned in Rule 38.

~wobbles but doesn't fall down~

Can a Mod retire this thread?

Can a Mod retire this thread? Please

To arms! To arms! The Redcoats are coming!