Sept. 25, 2015 — Possessing fewer than three million inhabitants, the small state of Utah will command a unique position at the Republican National Convention. As one of only seven Winner-Take-All states, plus the four small territories that will also cast their entire slate (9 delegates apiece) for an individual candidate, the Beehive State delegation (40 delegates) is key to helping determine who becomes the Republican presidential nominee.
Yesterday, state Republican chairman James Evans upped the ante. He suggested that favorite son and 2012 GOP nominee Mitt Romney could still be nominated next year even if he doesn’t enter the Republican primaries. How? A deadlocked convention could turn to him.
We have discussed the possibility of the Republicans going to a brokered convention for several months. With Donald Trump now the race leader and demonstrating that he can pull in the 30 percent neighborhood, there is little way the international businessman could cobble together a 50 percent coalition. Accounting for polls revealing that at least a quarter of the Republican electorate will vote against him under any circumstance, it becomes mathematically unfeasible for Trump to claim a first ballot victory. And, if Trump can’t get there with a support level greater than any other candidate, then who can?
Chairman Evans, seeing that Trump is likely unelectable, Scott Walker departing the race, Jeb Bush dropping to sixth position in some polls, and only senators Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Ted Cruz (R-TX) ascending in a minor way among the group of current or former office holders, believes it will be difficult for any GOP candidate to craft a first ballot victory.
Evans further explained that Republican Party rules do not require an eventual nominee to amass committed delegate votes through the primary and caucus system, and underscored that a majority delegation from only eight states – hence, the importance of the Winner-Take-Alls – can place an individual’s name into nomination. Thus, the stage is set for the most unique convention proceeding in the modern political era.