TAMPA – Despite the efforts of Georgia Republican party chief Sue Everhart’s to unanimously pledge the state’s 76-member nominating slate to Mitt Romney, a state party spokesman told Tipsheet Tuesday that a handful of delegates remained off the political reservation.
Former presidential suitors Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich won a collective 67 percent in Georgia’s Super Tuesday primary contest, but the pair symbolically released their delegates last week. With the entire slate already committed to Romney or no longer betrothed to another contender, Everhart had intended to offer all of the state’s votes to formally confirm Romney’s nod on the floor.
But the plan was derailed early Monday when four delegates, their identifies as yet unknown, revealed allegiances to Rep. Ron Paul, another erstwhile candidate whose supporters had grand designs of pushing his name to the nominating floor.
Even after a full day of Everhart’s wrangling, the rogue delegates refused to pledge to Romney.
“While it is our Party’s strong preference to cast our 76 votes for Governor Romney as a unified front, I do not believe we have reached unanimous consensus as of yet,” Georgia GOP spokesman Chris Kelleher, who remained in Atlanta, told Tipsheet.
Everhart and company will organize a formal roll call mid afternoon, after which a more firm number will be floated.
- James Richardson