Republican National Committee (RNC) Chairman Reince Priebus thinks that fervent supporters of Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump who criticize the party's delegate allocation should learn to respect the nominating process.
“By the way, this is a nomination for the Republican Party,” Priebus told Wisconsin radio host Charlie Sykes, according to the Washington Examiner. “If you don’t like the party, then sit down. The party is choosing a nominee.”
The chairman was referring to the the barrage of criticism Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump supporters were leveling against the RNC for the primary’s complicated process of selecting delegates and how they impact the rules of a potential contested convention.
Priebus confirmed that the 2016 convention rules would likely be different from the 2012 rules, largely because delegates of every election cycle are allowed to tweak them, especially when their candidate has a plurality.
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The chairman added that the 2012 rules set down by delegates bound to former Republican Gov. Mitt Romney of Massachusetts -- specifically Rule 40 -- stipulated only candidates who claim victory in eight or more states could remain on a first ballot.
Supporters of Republican Sen. Ron Paul of Texas had protested the rule, viewing it as a way of knocking their libertarian candidate out of consideration. If applied this year, then Republican Gov. John Kasich of Ohio would likely be barred from participating in a contested convention.
“People are saying, ‘Don’t you dare touch the rules people were booing about four years ago,’” Priebus joked, according to WTMJ. “I’m not in favor of touching the rules. I’m just trying to explain the process.”
Trump has renounced his pledge to not run as a third party nominee should he fail to win the party nomination.
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The chairman has dismissed fears that Trump will follow through on his threat, or that Republican Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas or Kasich would go against their pledges and refuse to endorse Trump should he be a nominee.
"I personally think that these folks are posturing and I think that they want to be loyal to the party. I think they will be loyal to the party," Priebus told Fox News according to PJ Media.