First: October 13, 2012
Last: September 28, 2013
At least three Republican electors say they may not support their party’s presidential ticket when the Electoral College meets in December to formally elect the new president, escalating tensions within the GOP and adding a fresh layer of intrigue to the final weeks of the White House race.
Melinda Wadsley of Ames, Iowa, told The Associated Press that she could not in good conscience vote for party nominee Mitt Romney. Wadsley was among three electors who had told the AP for a story published Thursday that they were exploring alternatives should Romney win their states.
Jesse Law, an elector and Paul supporter, said he may have qualms with Romney but has always intended to cast his electoral vote for the party nominee.
“I just want to beat Obama,” Law said.
But Ken Eastman may not cast his Nevada electoral vote for Romney, if the former Massachusetts governor wins the state. Eastman said he wants to explore options with Republican leaders in Clark County, a group now dominated by Paul supporters.
“I’m undecided at this point,” Eastman said, adding that he’s “pretty disgusted” with the national Republican Party and how it has worked to suppress Paul’s grassroots movement. He said the GOP has not been open to an influx of people with different ideas.
In Texas, elector Billie Zimmerman said she sees Paul as the only candidate able to save the country. She considers Romney and running mate Paul Ryan to be just another couple of Republicans who will disappoint her, and she called the GOP convention a “shocking display of deception and treachery and cheating.”
Zimmerman said she hasn’t decided how she’ll cast her electoral vote.
Along with the three electors looking at alternatives, Nevada GOP elector Ken Searles said he may vote for Paul as a protest, so long as his vote wouldn’t change the outcome of the election. Another elector, Kathleen Miller in Alaska, said she is planning to vote for Romney but left open the possibility of a Paul vote if the outcome of the election was certain and Republican leaders continued what she called “shenanigans.”
The last time multiple electors defected was in 1896, when William Jennings Bryan was the presidential candidate of both the Democratic Party and the People’s Party, with both parties choosing different vice presidential picks. Twenty-seven electors in that race chose the People’s Party ticket, even though it didn’t win the popular vote.
The Republican Party is quite a mess....