What Did Alaska Just Do At The RNC? Delegates Contested Their Recorded Votes For An Important Reason
Only two days into the 2016 Republican National Convention and it's unclear whether the party is as unified as some would like to believe. On Tuesday night, Donald Trump was officially selected as the Republican Party's presidential nominee. However, as the delegate counts came in some were still not satisfied. What did Alaska just do at the RNC?
One delegate spoke up as the votes were recorded and said he was contesting the "vote that Alaska cast as it was recorded by the secretary." The delegate explained the mishap:
It was mis-recorded by the secretary. We cast 12 votes for Sen. Ted Cruz, 11 votes for Donald Trump, and 5 votes for Marco Rubio. That was pursuant to the state of Alaska rules of our party. One hundred percent of our delegation agrees that is the proper vote. We were never notified of anything different by the RNC. We were never consulted, our national committee people were never consulted. Our attorney wasn't consulted. We were never told that you were going to miscount our votes tonight.
Was Alaska's contestation a final attempt at stopping Trump from becoming the party's nominee?
Chaos erupted on the convention floor on Monday night because delegates wanted a roll call vote to change their status as bound delegates in order to express their grievances over a Trump nomination. A petition circulated to force a roll call vote, which garnered support from 11 states and territories — only seven state signatories were necessary to vote on a change in convention rules. However, when it came time to vote on the rules, RNC chair Reince Priebus alleged that three of the state signatories withdrew their petitions and the request for a roll call vote was denied. Those states were Alaska, Minnesota, and Iowa, according to Red State.
On Tuesday, Alaska delegate Fred Brown released a statement that suggested otherwise. According to Red State, the statement read:
It has been reported that Alaska did not turn in its required signatures to contribute toward the rules committee roll call vote.
As a rules committee member, I had secured more than enough signatures from Alaska delegates, but the convention secretary was not at the designated location where I was told to submit them.
Some said she was hiding. Others said she was protected by guards. Regardless, I was told I could also present the signatures from the floor. Nevertheless, when the vote occurred, my mic was not turned on. When I attempted to present these signatures at the stage, my effort was ignored by the chair, and the security guard turned me away.
When Alaska delegation contested Tuesday's vote, it may have been a last attempt at counting and allocating their individual delegates based on their preferred candidates. Priebus noted that Alaska's rules allow delegates to be reallocated when a candidate drops out of the race.
House Speaker Paul Ryan announced that all 28 of Alaska's delegates would be recorded as votes for Trump.