By JEFF ZELENY
TAMPA, Fla. – Mitt Romney’s quest to formally win the Republican Party’s presidential nomination may suddenly come two days earlier.
Plans are under way for Mr. Romney’s name to be placed into nomination on Monday – not Wednesday as originally scheduled – because of a potential threat from Tropical Storm Isaac and concerns about a possible disruption during the roll call vote from Ron Paul supporters at the Republican National Convention next week.
A potential change in the schedule at the Republican gathering, which aides are poised to finalize on Friday, was confirmed to The New York Times by two senior Republican officials. It is a formality, and Mr. Romney is still set to deliver his acceptance speech on Thursday evening, but the change would carry significance.
As soon as Mr. Romney officially becomes the party’s presidential nominee, he can have access to the general election money he has spent months raising. After being outspent for most of the summer by television advertising from President Obama’s re-election campaign, Mr. Romney is on the cusp of tapping into a significant financial advantage for the final two months of the race.
But the potential change in the convention schedule, according to discussions underway among party officials here, has as much to do with a desire from the Romney campaign to keep an orderly convention next week as it does with Isaac, the storm that is expected to develop into a hurricane as it moves through the Caribbean toward Florida. Some supporters of Mr. Paul were pushing to make their voices heard next Wednesday during the roll call vote.
Mr. Paul, the libertarian Texas congressman whose Republican presidential bid fell short to Mr. Romney, won a majority of delegates from Iowa, Minnesota and Nevada. He also drew a measure of support in Louisiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Oklahoma and Oregon, but not enough state delegations to require that his name be placed into nomination.
The Republican National Committee voted Thursday to invalidate Mr. Paul’s delegates from Maine, a decision that was reached after negotiations with party officials, the Romney campaign and Mr. Paul’s aides. The Iowa Republican Party has offered to give guest passes to the convention floor for Mr. Paul’s supporters in Maine who lost their designation as delegates.
While Mr. Paul’s advisers have worked behind-the-scenes with the Romney campaign for months, several supporters have signaled their interest in making their admiration known for Mr. Paul next week on the convention floor. The Romney campaign has worked through most of the concerns about Mr. Paul, but officials said they were leaning toward moving up the roll call vote to Monday, a night when television networks were not planning to broadcast the convention to diminish the potential for any fireworks.
Republican officials, who have been nervously eyeing the path of the tropical storm, said that changing the roll call vote could resolve two potential problems: from supporters of Mr. Paul and the winds and rain of Isaac.
- Gingrich releases delegates to Romney | THE JEENYUS CORNER (jeenyuscorner.com)
- Laura Trice: Why the GOP Is Scared of Ron Paul and 4 Reasons He Might Still Get the 2012 Republican Nomination | THE JEENYUS CORNER (jeenyuscorner.com)
- The Dark Side of Mitt Romney | THE JEENYUS CORNER (jeenyuscorner.com)
- Romney adviser suggests Bernanke should stay | THE JEENYUS CORNER (jeenyuscorner.com)
- ‘New’ Republicans Behind Paul Ryan’s Political Rise | THE JEENYUS CORNER (jeenyuscorner.com)
- What Did Rand Paul Gain? | THE JEENYUS CORNER (jeenyuscorner.com)
- Mitt Romney: “I was too important to go to Vietnam” | THE JEENYUS CORNER (jeenyuscorner.com)
- Hurricane could hit US Republican convention | THE JEENYUS CORNER (jeenyuscorner.com)
- RNC attempts to make Ron Paul ineligible for Republican nomination | THE JEENYUS CORNER (jeenyuscorner.com)
- Romney Flips On Ron Paul’s Federal Reserve Audit | THE JEENYUS CORNER (jeenyuscorner.com)