Republican activists, discouraged by the party’s nomination of Donald Trump, circulated petitions to Republican National Committee standing members on Sunday to recall the GOP presidential nominee.
GOP Accountability, a project of the organization Free The Delegates, stated in a letter, signed by Free The Delegate’s Executive Director Regina Thomason, on their website:
“There are a total of 168 members of the committee. It requires just 10% of members representing no less than 16 states to call the meeting if Priebus doesn’t do the right thing and call the meeting himself.”
“These RNC petitions are the best hope to save our nation from a Hillary Clinton presidency, a liberal Supreme Court that will endure for decades, and losing the United States Senate. This model petition went through several drafts by both parliamentarians and attorneys skilled in Robert’s Rules of Order and Republican party rules. It will work to accomplish our goal.”
“Procedurally, the petitions force a RNC meeting to be called within 10 to 20 days. The meeting serves one substantive purpose — to remove or otherwise disqualify Donald Trump as the nominee, consistent with other sections of the Republican Party rules.”
The letter, which excoriates both Trump and Hillary Clinton, goes on to urge Republicans to sign the group’s accountability petition as well as to “call or e-mail the three Republican committee members from your state” to persuade them to also sign the petition via email and return it to the organization.
However, a party push to oust Trump from the ballot does not appear to be building and RNC members have said they have either declined to support it, not been contacted by the organization or never heard of it.
“I have not [heard from the group] and I believe that they will not have any semblance of success,” Christine Toretti, an RNC member from Pennsylvania, told The Washington Post.
“NYET!!” Bruce Ash, an RNC member from Arizona, said in an e-mail to Thomson. “You will not succeed. You are totally self-absorbed. How embarrassing for you. When our nominee defeats Clinton you will try, no doubt, to claim success. If we fail to win your 2nd guessing and lack of support will not be overlooked.”
Regardless, Thomason, told The Post the organization is not ready to talk about specific vote count among RNC members, but that “we believe it will not be difficult to obtain the necessary signatures.”
Free the delegates launched as an initiative, prior the Republican National Convention, as a way to seek to allow RNC delegates, mandated to cast their nomination votes to the primary results of their state, to vote for any candidate of their choosing.
The organization failed in several efforts to unbind these delegates during RNC rules meetings as well as during the convention itself.
The organization calls on RNC Chairman Reince Priebus to call a “Rule 9” meeting. “Under Rule 9(a), the Republican National Committee may fill ‘vacancies which may occur by reason of death, declination, or otherwise’ of the Presidential nominee. “Otherwise” includes disqualification and removal.”
Additionally, the organization wants an audit of the Republican Party, demanding that the RNC audit all petitions and “withdrawal” forms from the recent GOP convention in Cleveland.
Free the Delegates was behind organizing the effort to gather the majority of 11 state petition forms intended to trigger a roll call vote on the adoption of the convention rules.
The RNC Convention Rules Committee met one week before the convention to craft convention rules, which included rule debates relating to the unbinding of delegates. Ultimately, Trump delegates on the committee, backed by the RNC, quashed committee members who sought to allow all Republican delegates to “vote their conscience.”