Floor Fight! Deep Divide In GOP Opens Wide Over Rules, Delegates--UPDATED

This display happened three times in the span of about ten minutes at the Republican National Convention today. A fight had been brewing since Sunday over a proposal to change the rules regarding delegate credentials in order to marginalize grassroots delegates (read that as Ron Paul delegates) by centralizing approval over delegate credentials with the candidate and committee.

Morton Blackwell is one of the leading dissenters. Via The Hill:

Blackwell said the rules committee would meet shortly after the convention convened Tuesday afternoon and that he would then know if he has enough support to stop the rules changes.

The changes are being championed by Ben Ginsberg, a high-profile Washington-based election lawyer who is representing Romney’s campaign.

Conservatives believe Ginsberg is supporting the agenda of powerful political consultants and insiders.

“The guy who pushed these obnoxious changes was one of two members from the District of Columbia. His name is Ben Ginsberg. Earlier this year he was employed by the Michele Bachmann campaign and now he represents himself as representing the Romney campaign and he is doing things which are vigorously opposed by conservatives. Ben Ginsberg is a man unencumbered by principal,” Blackwell said.

With Freedomworks leading the charge, delegates stood and chanted "Point of Order!" as other delegates shouted "USA!" over each other, putting a halt to business until Priebus could come up and get them to quiet down.

The remarkable part, however, is how the votes went. All voice votes, and roughly equal in volume, at least, John Boehner and Reince Preibus called the motion for the Ayes.

Discontent is deep. Many, many tweets are flying by on the hashtag #RNCpowergrab. The Ron Paul/Freedomworks contingent feels as though the Mitt Romney lawnmower has just run over them, and I somehow doubt they will be working too hard for his election.

You make the call. Here's the voice vote on the rules. Did the Ayes have it?

UPDATE: CNN's John King chides Republicans for their 'pettiness'. It makes it so much harder to defend them, donchaknow?


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