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GOP’s cancellation of presidential primaries could blow up in Trump’s face — here’s why

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In recent weeks, Republican state party committees have been moving to cancel presidential primaries to prevent Never-Trump conservatives, like former Reps. Joe Walsh (R-IL) and Mark Sanford (R-SC) and former Gov. Bill Weld (R-MA), from challenging the president from the right. So far, Republicans in Arizona, Kansas, Nevada, and South Carolina have all announced they will scrap the voting process for 2020.

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There is, to be sure, precedent for doing so — both parties have often canceled primaries in certain states when they have an incumbent president running. Moreover, it is understandable that the GOP doesn’t want to tie up too many of its resources on what should be the foregone conclusion of Trump being nominated for a second term, when they will have to face hundreds of millions from the Democratic side in the general election.

But as Gregory Korte wrote in Bloomberg, when the incumbent is as vulnerable as Trump, canceling primaries could actually backfire, and turn the 2020 Republican National Convention into even more of a headache.

The danger is, because the delegates for the states where primaries are canceled would be “unbound,” if some sort of massive scandal occurs in the middle of the primary season, it would actually be easier for delegates in states without primaries to vote against Trump on the convention floor — whereas in states where primaries had taken place, the delegates would still be required to vote for Trump.

“Given Trump’s popularity within the party, it’s unlikely the primaries would make a big difference anyway,” wrote Korte. “But canceling primaries could result in more uncommitted delegates to the Republican National Convention next year, meaning they would not be pledged to Trump and could be less loyal if things go sideways.”

An additional risk to Trump is that he may actually be boosting the profile of his primary challengers nationwide — something they claim is in fact happening.

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“The attempts to stifle competition have backfired,” said Weld. “The Republican Party in Washington is working on voter suppression. I’m working on enlarging the electorate.” Sanford, meanwhile, noted the contradiction of the GOP’s play, saying if Trump was really so popular and strong a candidate, ‘You would take the win. You would take 90 percent all day long, particularly in the first-in-the-South primary.”


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2020 Election

RNC Chair Ronna McDaniel repeatedly voted by mail — before suing California for expanding the practice

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Republican National Committee (RNC) Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel frequently voted by mail before leading a lawsuit against California over the state's mail voting expansion, according to voting records.

This article originally appeared at Salon.ig

McDaniel announced on Sunday that the RNC, the National Republican Congressional Committee and the California Republican Party had sued Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom after he announced that all registered voters in the state would receive mail-in ballots for the upcoming elections.

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2020 Election

Leaked video: GOP Senate candidate told black leaders it’s pointless to call out Trump racism

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John James, the Republican nominee for a U.S. Senate seat in Michigan, privately told African-American leaders in the state that it was pointless to publicly call out President Donald Trump's racist statements — shortly before he publicly criticized former Vice President Joe Biden for "hurtful" remarks he made about black voters.

"When I do talk about a prosperity agenda, that's the goal, is achieving equity and equality for our people, not standing up on Twitter and condemning folks," James said in a leaked video obtained by Salon, in response to a question about why he had not spoken out about the president's racist rhetoric. "We've had our minds twisted to believe that speaking out is tantamount to fixing things."

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2020 Election

George Floyd’s death returns spotlight to Sen. Amy Klobuchar prosecutor past

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MINNEAPOLIS — The death of George Floyd in Minneapolis police custody this week has renewed concerns about Sen. Amy Klobuchar’s time as a Hennepin County prosecutor as she is being vetted as a potential running mate for Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden.The selection of Biden’s No. 2 is unfolding as many blacks — a key voting bloc for the party — are looking for Biden to show he is not taking black voters for granted and that his ticket can excite those who sat out the 2016 election.Klobuchar’s presidential bid was marked by an inability to gain inroads with black primary voters whil... (more…)

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