Ron Paul’s victories at the Nevada and Maine Republican Party conventions over the weekend are proof that his presidential campaign strategy is paying dividends. Although Paul lost to presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney in both caucuses, he won a majority of the delegates in each state. Paul got 18 of the 24 delegates at stake in Maine. In Nevada, he fared even better, winning 22 of the 25 delegates.
This could potentially lead to some serious consequences within the GOP come the Republican National Convention in August.
The Christian Science Monitor:
Mr. Paul’s strategy of organizing the grass roots and working arcane delegate selection rules is paying off. And that could mean big trouble for Mitt Romney and his plans to smoothly pivot to a campaign aimed solely at incumbent President Obama.
Yes, Mr. Romney is still the presumptive nominee. It’s highly unlikely Paul will be able to deny the former Massachusetts governor the prize he’s sought for so long. But Paul’s forces aren’t lining up and saluting a Romney victory. When they show up in Tampa in August they may be strong enough, and prepared enough, to throw the convention floor into embarrassing disarray.
Still, Romney will retain the support of most of Nevada’s delegates to the GOP national convention because of the state’s election rules, meaning Paul’s delegate victories—at least at this stage of the game—can be viewed as largely symbolic. —TEB
The Washington Post:
Nevada delegates are bound by the state’s results on the first convention ballot, so Romney will still get their support. Paul’s Nevada supporters are not challenging that rule, for fear of losing their convention seats altogether. Delegates who abstain will be replaced with alternates.
But some Paul supporters are hoping for a brokered convention, at which they could back Paul on subsequent ballots. Given Romney’s massive delegate lead, that’s highly unlikely. At the very least, they can vocally cheer for their preferred nominee and pressure the party to give Paul a bigger voice.