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Morton Blackwell on the VILE Rules Changes at RNC Convention

From: Morton Blackwell
To: Members of The Republican National Committee
Date: Mon, Sep 3, 2012 at 3:12 PM
Subject: My Thoughts on the Rule’s Controversy

Dear Fellow RNC Member,

Now that the national convention is over, many delegates and others have asked me to sum up my views on the controversy at the convention regarding The Rules of the Republican Party and where we should go from here.

What happened regarding the party rules in Tampa was a totally unnecessary – but largely successful attempt – to concentrate and centralize more power at the top of the party and restrict or shut off opportunities for power in the party to flow from the bottom up.

The effort was led by Ben Ginsberg, a member of the Convention Rules Committee from Washington, D.C., who represented himself as the spokesman for Mitt Romney’s Presidential Campaign.

Earlier this year, Mr. Ginsberg worked for the Presidential Campaign of Michele Bachmann. In Tampa, he led the effort to make major changes in the party rules strongly opposed by Congresswoman Bachmann.

Mr. Ginsberg is simply a man unencumbered by principles.

For four years, the Republican National Committee’s Standing Committee on Rules carefully reviewed The Rules of the Republican Party and adopted changes to propose for adoption by the national convention.

Then the Republican National Committee voted unanimously to approve the new rules proposed by its Standing Committee on Rules and sent them on to the Convention Rules Committee.

Enter Ben Ginsberg.

At the Convention Rules Committee meeting, he proceeded to introduce and support many amendments to the newly-revised rules which had been approved the previous day by the RNC.

The changes he proposed shared a common theme: to concentrate and centralize more power at the top of the party, and to shut off opportunities for power in the party to flow from the bottom up.

Since these rules changes would go into effect for the 2016 presidential election cycle, none of Mr. Ginsberg’s power grabs would in any way help us elect Mitt Romney and defeat President Barack Obama in November.

And I’m sure you agree defeating Obama should be our top priority this Election Year.

But Ben Ginsberg’s efforts predictably enraged conservative Republicans who treasure the protections long incorporated in our national party rules.

The record will show that during the Conventions Rules Committee meeting, as a member of that Committee from Virginia, I repeatedly warned Mr. Ginsberg that his power grabs would hurt the Romney campaign by outraging grassroots conservative and libertarian activists whom we want to support our candidates this year.

Unfortunately, Mr. Ginsberg continued on his path.

There are some folks who, if you give them a fur coat, think they’re King Kong.

As anyone with relevant experience should have foreseen, when the Rules Committee report was presented for consideration to the National Convention, a thunderous “NO!” vote arose from the convention floor.

Most of the news media and those of us in the convention hall agree that the vote on adopting the Rules was obviously close. Some believe the “NO” vote was louder, but Speaker Boehner ruled that the “ayes” had it.

I was the youngest elected Goldwater delegate at the 1964 national convention. I have attended every national convention since, and I’ve represented Virginia on the RNC since 1988.

Nothing like this has ever happened before in living memory at a Republican National Convention.

When they were presumptive Presidential nominees – and when they were Presidents of the United States – neither George H.W. Bush nor George W. Bush ever attempted to undermine the means by which power within the Republican Party structure can rise from the bottom up.

The operatives whom the Romney campaign put in charge of Rules matters seem to want the power to rule the national Republican Party, as Nelson Rockefeller used to run the New York State Republican Party.

These operatives should be repudiated – and it’s not too late to do so.

Later in this email, I’ll discuss some of the awful changes Mr. Ginsberg supported.

But first, it’s necessary to stress how important I believe it is to elect Mitt Romney and defeat Barack Obama in November.

My wife and I have supported Republican candidates every year in our 40-year marriage. This year, my wife and I have contributed at least five times as much money to Romney Victory, Inc. as we have ever given to any other campaign.

Four years ago, I predicted in a posting which still can be seen on the website RedState, how bad a President Barack Obama would be.

He has been even worse than I predicted.

Barack Obama is a leftist ideologue who has filled his Administration with other leftist ideologues, and their policies are bankrupting our country and destroying many of our liberties.

Mitt Romney strongly supports conservative principles – and he would undo the damage Obama has done.

He would end the slide into national bankruptcy, restore threatened liberties, and put our country on the path toward economic growth and more job opportunities.

It’s little short of tragic that some of his operatives blundered by setting up an entirely unnecessary, major controversy with grassroots Republicans at our national convention.

Undoubtedly, the worst power grab initiated by Mr. Ginsberg was his ramming through a change in the Rules of the Republican Party, a new Rule 12, which permits the Republican National Committee to change national rules between conventions.

The Democrats have had such a rule for years, and those in power in their party spend the periods between their national conventions fighting in their national committee over rules changes to benefit this or that faction, or this or that potential presidential nominee.

We Republicans have avoided that by prohibiting changes in the rules between our national conventions.

The office of the RNC Chairman is – and has to be – very powerful. A National Committee of 168 members, which meets for a few hours two or three times a year, can’t micro-manage the RNC.

The RNC Chairman has the immense power of the purse and a large staff to influence the decisions of the RNC, so an RNC Chairman can get the votes of a super-majority of the RNC for just about anything he or she desires.

But until now, the fact that the RNC Chairman must abide by stable party rules has served as the main protection for input by grassroots conservatives and libertarians.

For practical purposes, the new Rule 12 adds to the power of the RNC Chairman (or to the White House when there’s a Republican President) the ability to change party rules at will.

Over a number of election cycles, our party has struggled to avoid the front-loading of our delegate selection process, moving us closer and closer to a single national primary as states race to the head of the line to hold their primaries.

Yet prudence dictates that there should be a reasonably long nomination process in order to properly vet all of our candidates.

After special studies and much consultation, many serious party leaders finally came up with a workable solution. Party rules were changed in this cycle to prohibit winner-take-all primaries in March of presidential election years. March primaries had to in some way allocate delegate votes proportionally to the popular vote.

The new system worked, and Mitt Romney is a better presidential candidate because of that experience.

Mr. Ginsberg gutted the hard-won reform by ramming through a change in the rules to permit winner-take-all primaries in March.

When I asked him why he did this, he replied to me, “It wasn’t our idea. We did it as a favor for some friends.”

That’s a far cry from a process in which the best interests of our party are carefully discussed and considered.

I have innumerable times over the years recruited new participants into the Republican Party by stressing the fairness, openness, and stability of our Republican rules compared to those of the Democratic Party.

The way to treat newcomers to our party is fairly, politely, and even cordially.

That’s what we do in Virginia. And that’s how to build and sustain a majority party.

Among the many still-not-publicized rules changes rammed through the Convention Rules Committee by Mr. Ginsberg was one to raise from five to eight the number of states a presidential candidate would have to win in the nomination contests in order to have his or her name formally placed in nomination before the convention.

Raising the bar was a gratuitous slap at prospective new participants in our nomination process.

Despite his success in recruiting new volunteers, Congressman Ron Paul won a majority of the delegate votes in nowhere near five states this year.

To discuss all the power grabs the rules suffered this year would be tedious in a letter, so let me mention only some of them, including the one which resulted in a “compromise.”

Mr. Ginsberg got the Convention Rules Committee to pass a rule change which would allow presidential candidates to remove national convention delegates who were legally elected under the party rules and laws of the respective states. This caused such a furor that a Minority Report to the Rules Committee Report seemed certain.

That would have forced a debate on the convention floor and a vote of the entire convention body.

A valid Minority Report required the support of 28 members – or 25% – of the Convention Rules Committee. Well over 35 signatures were certain, despite all available arm-twisting of Mr. Ginsberg and those who supported him on everything else.

State parties, including Virginia’s, fiercely defended their right to elect their own delegates. The “compromise” was for Mr. Ginsberg to agree to take out the provision which would have given candidates the power to disavow and remove legally elected delegates.

In place of that obnoxious provision was inserted a guarantee that delegate votes would go to candidates who won those delegate votes in binding presidential primaries, a matter which would have been routinely enforced under the existing rules.

Conservatives continued to mount efforts to file two Minority Reports, but in the end, enough Rules Committee members were persuaded not to sign them or to remove their signatures.

Neither had the required 28 signatures and one wound up with 27 valid signatures.

Therefore no Minority Reports reached the convention floor.

I should mention that Mr. Ginsberg moved one rules change which would have required the signatures of 40% of future Convention Rules Committees for a Minority Report to be considered on the convention floor.

That would have rendered future Minority Reports virtually impossible because the signatures would have to be obtained and the Minority Report filed within one hour of the adjournment of the Convention Rules Committee.

The opposition to this attempted power grab was so intense that Mr. Ginsberg withdrew his motion.

There circulated in the media coverage of the Tampa convention a report that a late and wayward bus deliberately prevented the Virginia Delegates from arriving at the convention hall in time for me to take part in the final (usually pro-forma) meeting of the Convention Rules Committee held as the convention began.

It is true that our Virginia bus got our delegation to the convention hall after the Convention Rules Committee meeting adjourned. But I never for a minute believed our bus had been deliberately delayed.

One should not attribute to conspiracy what can adequately be explained by incompetence. You will recall that staggeringly bad transportation arrangements inconvenienced most of the states’ delegations that day.

All in all, in most ways our 2012 convention was a roaring success.

We presented great speeches by Mitt Romney and his brilliant choice for running mate, Paul Ryan. Other great speeches by Anne Romney, Marco Rubio, and a galaxy of others put our party’s best feet forward. The 2012 Republican Platform clearly expressed our conservative and liberty-loving principles.

My strong advice is for all of us to work tirelessly and give generously to our national campaign. Everything is on the line this year.

And there’s another reason for solid conservatives to contribute more time and money now.

I believe we shall win this election, and then there’s the important matter of staffing a new Administration.

I worked full-time in the Presidential Personnel Office of President-elect Ronald Reagan and then for three years on his White House staff.

Personnel is policy.

An incoming administration tends to hire people who contributed significantly to winning the election.

If we expect a new President to hire a lot of principled conservatives and libertarians, we should maximize the number of principled conservatives and libertarians who have credentialed themselves by taking part in the Mitt Romney campaign.

And then, in 2016 we can work to repeal the current Rule 12 – and reverse the other mistakes incorporated in the new rules last week.

Cordially,
Morton Blackwell
National Committeeman, Virginia



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This is so sad, decades in the GOP and this is how he is treated

Stockholm syndrome:
"Psychiatry A syndrome in which hostages identify and sympathize with their captors on whom they depend for survival"

Morton Blackwell - Stockholm syndrome, good analysis.

Morton Blackwell - Stockholm syndrome, good analysis.

When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the Universe.
~ John Muir

Guess Blackwell doesn't want to get kicked off the Rules Comm.

What?! "He [Romney] would end the slide into national bankruptcy, restore threatened liberties, and put our country on the path toward economic growth and more job opportunities." (Romney plans to increase the national debt; thinks Spanky Bernanke has done a good job; and said he'd have signed the NDAA as written.)

What?! "Despite his success in recruiting new volunteers, Congressman Ron Paul won a majority of the delegate votes in nowhere near five states this year." (Didn't he have at least 11 until states/the RNC stripped delegate of their credentials/stripped states of their delegates?)

What?! The bus to pick up Blackwell arrived late, got lost, and then circled the convention twice until passengers demanded to be let off, but... "One should not attribute to conspiracy what can adequately be explained by incompetence."

One thing I get (from someone who's been there and knows): "An incoming administration tends to hire people who contributed significantly to winning the election."

When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the Universe.
~ John Muir

I will NEVER vote for a

I will NEVER vote for a Republican in this election because of this vileness! NO. It is obviously already scripted that Romney will win, and I see no difference between him and Obama as far as who I want as President. I like no one but Ron, but I am voting Libertarian. I want them to get $95 million dollars and if I have to vote for lesser evils then Johnson is it. I would rather throw my vote away to a 3rd party then write in Ron which vote will probably be ashcanned.

Morton's like

someone who's been violently raped, who then hopes her rapist is going to marry her, so that she can change his violent behavior. That's how deluded Morton is. Also, do you read behind the lines that he's asking for a job from Mitt?

HOW SAD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Bump!

Ron Paul is the only qualified person for the 2012 Republican Nomination who can unify conservative Republicans, Independents, Libertarians and stabilize the economy. If the GOP is smart and humble enough to do a mea culpa and nominate Ron Paul, Republicans stand a better chance of winning in November. All Romney and the GOP had to do was play fair and win honorably, but I guess that was too much to ask.

Ginsburg and Obama campaign secret debate agreement

This is why we see Obama and Romney as the same. They even work together to knock out any opposing voices. The GOP is working hard to get 3rd party candidates off of state ballots and now Ginsburg is working with Robert F. Bauer of the Obama campaign to make sure no one else can get in the debates? We saw how he worked at the RNC. He is relentless and has no principles whatsoever.

http://www.examiner.com/article/is-our-upcoming-presidential...

I say SUE the BASTARDS!!!

for fraud, expenses, all kinds of things! Then let's use Discovery on all the emails between the GOP & RNC on how they collaborated on removing Ron Paul delegates and while we are at it, how about the cell phone records of the shuttle bus companies and who was on the other end of phone? I SAY EXPOSE THE CORRUPTION!! TIME TO PLAY HARD BALL! THEY SURE DIDN'T HOLD BACK NOW, DID THEY?

Chris from SC!

I understand you but....

You are assuming the courts will be honest and forthcoming. Hasn't been my experience...

"Necessity is the plea for every infringement of human freedom. It is argument of tyrants. It is the creed of slaves." William Pitt in the House of Commons November 18, 1783
"I know major allies who fund them" Gen. Dempsey referring to ISIS

I am assuming the discovery phase

could be enough to expose the fraud.

Notice how he blames Romney's

Notice how he blames Romney's lawyer Ginsberg while giving Romney a free pass; and at the same time blames Obama the prez...shouldn't he get a free pass too for his bad policies and blame it on Obama's lawyers?

this guy

has obviously been around politics his entire life. He deserves respect... i guess , but for him to believe he and his delegates were not kept from getting to the convention floor is FOOL-HEARTEDLY

his way is the past, we need a new generation of people that can break through this false left-right paradigm and start showing the public what these two-faced phony politicians really are. that is if the public would stop being sheeple and wake-t-f-up, too bad academia and big pharma won't allow that to happen.

RON did have plurality EVERYWHERE, the ballots were'nt counted and Santorium was FALSLEY PROPPED UP all the while by the LameStreamMedia.

then Morton falls in to the trap of "Well we need to beat OBUMMER NO MATTER WHAT ideology."

What about standing by your so-called principles MORTON and challenging the fact that RON WAS SHUT OUT BY YOUR CORRUPT SYSTEM!!!

and yes Ginsberg is and remains a POS.

we need some BEN SWANNS in politics !!!!

"He's this eccentric Ghandi-Like figure that you cant touch with the normal bribes that people respond to."
the man Doug Wead on DR. RON PAUL

tool

tool

"all is not as it appears"

Key paragraph

Since these rules changes would go into effect for the 2016 presidential election cycle, none of Mr. Ginsberg’s power grabs would in any way help us elect Mitt Romney and defeat President Barack Obama in November.

2016!

http://www.dailypaul.com/252659/so-why-was-ron-pauls-nominat...

What liberty-loving principles did Romney just come into?

"We presented great speeches by Mitt Romney and his brilliant choice for running mate, Paul Ryan. Other great speeches by Anne Romney, Marco Rubio, and a galaxy of others put our party’s best feet forward. The 2012 Republican Platform clearly expressed our conservative and liberty-loving principles."

and

"Mitt Romney strongly supports conservative principles – and he would undo the damage Obama has done.
He would end the slide into national bankruptcy, restore threatened liberties, and put our country on the path toward economic growth and more job opportunities."

The only brilliance in Mitt Romney selecting Paul Ryan was in his popularity boost -- neither of them will do anything to safeguard our liberties (since Obama, Romney and Ryan all love and support NDAA Sec. 1021, the Patriot Act, CISPA, the Fed, and bailouts to name a few. Yup, I'll sleep well at night knowing they're safeguarding our liberties). Nor will either administration bring our Troops home or seek an audit and an End to the Fed. So how does he propose that Romney will undo the damage Obama has done?

morton

isnt bright. He is incompetent. Goldwater delegate that supports pro choice stericycle billionaire that farts lies out his ass everytime he opens it to speak. Paul Ryan a good choice? Obviously Morton doesnt know the meaning of conservative. Paul Ryans budget is the dumbest thing Ive ever seen and a poor excuse and embarrassment to anyone who doesnt count on their fingers.

If it's close, I'm voting for Obama

Because of all the corruption throughout the republican primary, I won't vote for Romney. I'm planning on voting for Gary Johnson because he is a pretty good libertarian and he is the only possible winner that's not Obama or Romney, both which are bad. But if it's close in the state I am in come this November, I will probably vote for Obama because Romney is the most corrupt, cheating, vile and opportunistic jerk I have ever seen run for the office of president. He's like the anti Ron Paul, who is my hero.

obama troll

a vote for obamney is a vote NOT for the constitution, and a huge plethora of a list of other things. but vote your conscious, hopefully that means you wont vote at all. no offense.

ME 2 **#*#!A2@*? Ok

ME 2

Cacama

Obama is also the anti Ron Paul :-)

Really, Romney and Obama are twins separated at birth. Please vote third party and show the RNC what they lost. As you mentioned there's Gary Johnson and there's also Virgil Goode with the Constitution Party. (there's talk that Goode is going to cost Romney the election in Virginia, hee, hee). Poor Romney. Or if you don't care if your vote is "counted", then write in Ron Paul - but please don't feed the monopolizing two party system. Thanks!

incompetence?

How can Morton Blackwell possibly believe that the bus we delayed simply due to incompetence? I think this is disingenuous and wishful thinking on his part.

Secondly, in this day of cell phones, certainly a call could have been made to delay the rule committee meeting until Morton Blackwell and the Virginia delegates arrived rather than shove these rule changes through committee in totalitarian fashion.

How can he call Ginsburg unprincipled, and then...

tell you to help Romney so you can get a job????

Now

Morton Blackwell just stated these rules do not happen until 2016.So why the heck isn't the campaign fighting for Ron Paul?Am I missing something here???

Ron Paul Nominated for President in Tampa, GOP Changed Rules
http://www.usanewsfirst.com/2012/08/28/ron-paul-nominated-fo...

It appears that the DP

now has more folks ready to compromise than ever before.
Romney or Johnson? You must still be asleep.

This train has run off the tracks.

Time to start heading for the exits.

Expect it. Flip flopping and cowardice runs deep in the GOP

just think about 100 years of compromise DNA-ingrained.

I would like to see the check that he received from the RNC

before he wrote this letter.

This is a LIE

He talks vote count numbers but DOES NOT MENTION That both HE and TWO Virginians missed the meetings due to bus hijackings.

He does mention the buses.

He does mention the buses. Did you read the entire letter?

Blessings )o(

Little more than mental

Little more than mental masturbation by Mr. Blackwell here.

Here, I'll sum it up since he's incapable of logic.... The GOP has gone full fascist.

No need for principled people of any stripe to explain anything more.

I must be willing to give up what I am in order to become what I will be. Albert Einstein

HERE Kitty kitty!

HERE Kitty kitty!

Cacama