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Ron Paul delegates express anger, discontent at rules change

As they walked out of the convention, Paul supporters fume over what they saw as “no compromise,” shouting “As Maine Goes, So Goes The Nation.”

TAMPA, Fla. — “As Maine Goes, So Goes The Nation.”

That was the chant heard as long lines of Ron Paul delegates and their supporters walked out of the Republican National Convention last night just as John McCain began speaking. As Human Events‚?? Hope Hodge reported at the time, ‚??the chant was a reference to a GOP leadership move to split the Maine delegation in order to keep Paul from receiving all the state‚??s delegates, and thus maintaining a united front for Romney.‚?Ě

Along with the delegation involved in the Maine dispute, Paul supporters who were delegates from Texas and Virginia joined the walkout to show solidarity with the Maine contingent.

‚??There was no compromise on this‚??the Credentials Committee (of the convention) just split the delegation and went along with what the party bosses in Maine wanted,‚?Ě Lisa Mata, an alternate delegate from Texas, told Human Events as she was walking out. Mata and others were particularly upset at House Speaker John Boehner for ruling on a voice vote Friday that the ‚??ayes‚?Ě had it in terms of accepting the Credentials Committee report supporting a split of the Maine delegation.

Michael Coleman, who is also part of the Maine delegation, told us that he had spoken to his state‚??s Republican Gov. Paul LePage and ‚??he didn‚??t like the resolution of this either. And that‚??s why he decided not to come to Tampa — to show solidarity with us.‚?Ě

In announcing his decision to remain in Augusta, Maine during the convention, LePage told reporters: ‚??I made it clear, when the challenge was issued, that I felt the Maine delegates selected at the Maine Convention should be seated in Tampa. It is unfortunate that not all of these delegates will be seated.‚?Ě

The Paul forces in Maine claimed they abided by the rules of the state GOP convention earlier this year and were entitled to all 20delegates going to Tampa. But opponents led by then-Republican National Committeewoman Jan Staples charged that the Paul people ran roughshod over parliamentary procedure and other rules at the convention and supported splitting the delegation into groups of ten each for Paul and Mitt Romney. The Credentials Committee agreed with Staples (who was deposed from her position at the state convention) and voted to support splitting the delegation.

‚??They just didn‚??t like the way the process turned out and the fact we won,‚?Ě Pete Harceng, a Paul supporter from Auburn, Maine known as ‚??Pete the Carpenter,‚?Ě told us, ‚??and now they made a train wreck unavoidable.‚?Ě

As emotional as the Maine controversy is, Coleman, Harceng, and others we spoke to said they would vote for Romney because they feared four more years of Barack Obama. Lisa Mata said she was ‚??undecided at this point‚?Ě about who to support.

Written By

John Gizzi has come to be known as ‚??the man who knows everyone in Washington‚?Ě and, indeed, many of those who hold elected positions and in party leadership roles throughout the United States. With his daily access to the White House as a correspondent, Mr. Gizzi offers readers the inside scoop on what‚??s going on in the nation‚??s capital. He is the author of a number of popular Human Events features, such as ‚??Gizzi on Politics‚?Ě and spotlights of key political races around the country. Gizzi also is the host of ‚??Gizzi‚??s America,‚?Ě video interviews that appear on Gizzi got his start at Human Events in 1979 after graduating from Fairfield University in Connecticut and then working for the Travis County (Tex.) Tax Assessor. He has appeared on hundreds of radio and TV shows, including Fox News Channel, C-SPAN, America's Voice,The Jim Bohannon Show, Fox 5, WUSA 9, America's Radio News Network and is also a frequent contributor to the BBC -- and has appeared on France24 TV and German Radio. He is a past president of the Georgetown Kiwanis Club, past member of the St. Matthew's Cathedral's Parish Council, and secretary of the West End Friends of the Library. He is a recipient of the William A. Rusher Award for Journalistic Excellence and was named Journalist of the Year by the Conservative Political Action Conference in 2002. John Gizzi is also a credentialed correspondent at the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund. He has questioned two IMF managing directors, Dominique Strauss-Kahn and Christine LaGarde, and has become friends with international correspondents worldwide. John‚??s email is JGizzi@EaglePub.Com