The upcoming Republican National Convention could be a train wreck. Instead of the usual perfectly choreographed variety show, we’re likely to see an epic battle between take-no-prisoners baggers and what’s left of the GOP establishment. And then there are Ron Paul groupies, many of which are still fighting to take over state delegations.
For example, this is from yesterday’s New Orleans Times Picayune:
Ron Paul forces in Louisiana were willing to employ “dishonest and disruptive tactics” to manipulate voting at the party’s presidential caucuses and try to “hijack” the state convention to “overrule the will of nearly 200,000 presidential primary voters,” according to a brief filed by the Louisiana Republican Party with the national GOP’s Committee on Contests. The state party is defending the 46-member delegation it is sending to the National Republican Convention at the end of the month in Tampa from a challenge by Ron Paul supporters in the state
The challenge on behalf of the Paul supporters portrayed state party Chairman Roger Villere and the party apparatus as operating in a manner “more characteristic of a North Korean politburo than a democratic American political party that honors procedures and majority votes,” in order to keep the Ron Paul majority at the state party convention in Shreveport in June from working its will.
Similar disputes are ongoing in other states as well. The convention begins August 27.
And then there are the baggers. Nobody seems to know what percentage of the delegates are from the Tea Party, but those that are will very likely insist that the platform and agenda reflect their ideology and only their ideology, or else they are going to get very loud and nasty about it.
Mittens wants the convention to be a five-day ode to his magnificence. Will the baggers behave? Will they refrain from booing and walkouts and otherwise doing whatever they can do to draw attention to themselves? Not likely.
Mitt’s vice presidential pick will either alienate the baggers, causing them to act up; or it will please the baggers, causing general election voters to stamped to President Obama. I don’t see a lot of wiggle room for Mitt there.
In short, this convention could be epic. The GOP will be lucky if it doesn’t turn into a gunfight.