Share This Article with a Friend!

Time for Trump to Stop Whining and Mount a Ground Game

After he got skunked in Colorado Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump and his team mounted a week-long crybaby session about how unfair the delegate selection process was and how he was somehow cheated in a delegate selection process the rules of which were announced almost a year ago.  

We believe, as do Rush Limbaugh and many other conservative commentators, that while the Colorado rules Donald Trumpmay have been convoluted, Trump wasn’t cheated – the establishment always makes the rules and he just got out-hustled because he and his people didn’t understand them, and the Cruz team did. 

The evidence of that is that a week out from the Colorado Convention where the delegates were selected he fired his Colorado state campaign manager and parachuted in new guy to try and recoup the disaster – it didn’t work and instead of admitting that he got out-hustled Trump decided to attack the process. 

So, in the interest of making sure all readers of CHQ, including our friends who support Donald Trump (and whom we respect, even as we disagree with them) understand the rules of the next round of Republican primaries and State Conventions here is a memo from the Republican National Committee detailing the delegate allocation process that was recently released to the media:

On October 1 of last year, 50 states, 5 territories, and the District of Columbia submitted finalized plans for how delegates would be chosen for the Republican National Convention. These plans were promptly circulated to all of the campaigns and the RNC held a briefing with over 100 members of the media in attendance laying out these plans the next day on October 2. 

As a party, we believe in the freedom of the states to make decisions about how they will select delegates to the National Convention. And for decades, this grassroots-driven, democratic process has been transparent and effective.  

This cycle is no different. 

The rules surrounding the delegate selection have been clearly laid out in every state and territory and while each state is different, each process is easy to understand for those willing to learn it. 

It ultimately falls on the campaigns to be up to speed on these delegate rules. Campaigns have to know when absentee ballots are due, how long early voting lasts in certain states, or the deadlines for voter registration; the delegate rules are no different. 

Whether delegates are awarded through a primary, caucus, or convention, this process is democracy in action and driven by grassroots voters across the country.  

The RNC is transparent about the rules and works with campaigns on a consistent basis to address any questions surrounding the process. As we head into the final contests in April, here is a rundown of those elections and how their delegates will be selected: 


Delegates in Wyoming are elected at the grassroots level at the Wyoming State Party Convention. Campaigns can organize supporters to run as delegates and those candidates can be bound if they declare for a candidate.    


On April 19, New York Republicans will go to the polls with 95 delegates at stake. Delegates are awarded by congressional district and on an at-large basis. If a candidate receives over 50 percent of the vote in a congressional district they win all three of the at-large delegates in that district. Only those candidates who receive more than 20 percent of the vote are eligible to receive delegates. The delegates bound by the primary vote will then be elected by their peers at grassroots congressional district meetings. The 11 at-large delegates to the National Convention are voted on by the Republican State Committee at their meeting on May 18. 



Delegates are submitted as slates by the candidates and are awarded on an at-large and congressional district basis. At-large delegates are awarded proportionately for all candidates who receive over 20 percent of the vote with all at-large delegates awarded to a candidate if they break 50 percent. The plurality winner of the congressional district vote wins all three delegates from the district. Both the at-large and congressional are elected at the State Committee Meeting on April 26.  


Delegates are awarded on a winner-take-all basis and are voted on as a slate at the state convention on April 29. 


Three delegates for each candidate are elected directly on the ballot in each congressional district and at-large delegates are voted on individually at the State Central Committee meeting on May 14. Congressional district delegates are winner-take-all by district vote, at-large delegates are winner-take-all by statewide vote. 


Pennsylvania elects three delegates from each congressional district on the primary ballot and the State Committee elects 14 at-large delegates at their meeting on May 21. Congressional district delegates are submitted by campaigns, though are technically unbound. At-large delegates are winner-take-all based on the statewide vote. 


Delegates are elected directly on the ballot in the primary election. Delegates are awarded proportionately on an at-large and congressional district basis with a 10 percent threshold. 

For more information and facts about the convention, addresses frequently asked questions about delegates, the rules, and how the process works.

Share this

The problem isn't "Trump" whining, it's Trump's VOTERS' anger

Anti-Trump activists focus on Trump whining about unfair GOP rules and sneaky political insider/delegate games. The big point they're missing is that --much more importantly-- Trump VOTERS are angry about this too -- with good reason. Trump is new at this, and he and his campaign are trying hard to catch up. But we his voters are becoming aware --for the first time-- how archaic, politically loaded, and undemocratic these party rules and "games" are -- actually in both parties. Colorado and Wyoming were pathetic examples of party insiders deciding who wins for voters. And besides insiders, this includes those willing to play the game, which Cruz, one of the Outsider candidates, is now doing with most certainly the willing help of the GOP Establishment, of which the RNC and the state party hierarchies are an integral part. Cruz is likely being used by GOP Establishment Elites to stop Trump, while Cruz himself is being limited --with GOP Elites delight if not outright approval-- by Kasich continuing in the race, as well as Rubio holding onto his delegates. The result of all this is Trump likely falls short of the 1,237 needed to win the first ballot. The second ballot & succeeding ballots will be chaos, as many of Trump's assigned delegates are not actual Trump supporters, and may go over to Cruz or Kasich or would have gone over to Ryan, or may just hold off voting until the GOP Elites decide who they want. Cruz, counting on a flow of delegates not earned by popular vote to win a second or third ballot, may be surprised if many of his own delegates decide to go elsewhere. Who knows?  But the most unhappiest campers in all this are going to be Trump voters, and also Cruz voters if the GOP Elites find somebody/anybody to push forward other than Trump or Cruz. Anyway, Cruz supporters like to point out that Trump shouldn't whine because he has more delegates proportionately than popular votes he received. That's true, the biggest reason for this being the winner-take-all states/congressional districts contests. I say get rid of all the non-popular vote aspects of the primary system. No more winner-take-all anything, but also no more Colorado and Wyoming style conventions, or for example Pennsylvania's upcoming popular vote "beauty contest" for 58 of it 71 delegates. Also, no more caucuses. As for open primaries, discontinue them too. Whatever is done should be consistently done in all of the states.  Enough of the chaos of different ways of choosing, and varying so much between the states.  It only lends itself to benefitting the establishment party machines, professional party hacks, their "rules" and their games, and their ultimate control of who gets nominated, or at the very least who gets ousted out from consideration (Trump for sure, Cruz pretty much too).  It's expensive and difficult enough to mount a Presidential campaign, let alone have all of these ridiculous hoops to jump through. But it is important to be able to gauge the votes of independents and Democrats who may want to vote GOP because a certain candidate's policies appeals to them more than the increasingly far-leftist Democratic candidates.  Maybe they should be allowed to cast "unofficial" GOP votes that are not actually counted in the candidates' totals.  So although it may not impact that state's race, it may impact future primaries by enabling other GOP voters to see which GOP candidate(s) has the ability to expand the base of the party, thus possibly influencing their own vote.  (Many Democrats -after the beginning primaries- have changed their registration in later voting states this primary season because Donald Trump appeals to them). Finally, to end the current worn-out, anti-voter, political machine ruled political hack delegate system of the past --once and for all-- we need to to go to a system of straight popular voting for all states.  If the primary election season ends without a majority candidate, we should then have a natiowide >>runoff<< primary election.  Plain and simple.  Five candidates run, if none gets over 50%, have a runoff with the top two vote-getters.  This is done in many countries around the world, and there's no reason it can't work here. And while were at it, for the same reason as there shouldn't be winner-take-all primaries, let's get rid of the Electoral College, which is winner-take-all for each state.  Maybe it was a good idea way back in 1789, when women didn't vote, most blacks were slaves, and there wasn't even universal male suffrage: many states required a man to own property to vote, for example.  If it takes an amendment to the Constitution to get rid of it, let's do it. The two-party system has clearly failed us.  It's not required by the constitution.  We need to minimalize party machine power, maximize voter influence, and if not by totally popular / runoff primary elections, then we need to change to a multi-party parliamentary system, where in the absence of a clear majority, some of the parties form alliances to form a government.  It may seem chaotic, but our current system is wrong in so many ways.  The only thing worse than what we have now is a one-party state, and the way our country's demographics are shifting, that's likely to be the Democratic Party not too many years in the future. 

run on paragraphs

The only thing worse than a run on sentence is a run on Paragraph.