Reporter William March has covered state and national politics since 1994. Email
Reporter Mike Salinero has covered Hillsborough County government since 2007. Email
Reporter James L. Rosica covers state government from the Tribune's Tallahassee bureau. Email
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RNC moves to tighten rules on primary date violators—like Florida
Posted Aug 22, 2012 by William March
Updated Aug 22, 2012 at 06:14 PM
A committee of the national Republican Party today started the process of tightening up the future penalties for states that bust the presidential primary schedule—a move aimed squarely at Florida.
Under the proposal, if Florida does again what it did in 2012 by holding a primary so early it violates party rules, the state would lose all but a dozen of its convention delegates.
This year, Florida’s delegation was reduced from 99 to 50 voting delegates, although the other 49 are being allowed to attend the convention as “non-voting guests.”
The Republican National Committee’s rules committee passed the measure Tuesday, sending it to the Republican National Convention rules committee for final consideration Friday.
The goal, according to state delegates who favored the move: To cut the delegate total so much for a violator state that candidates won’t waste money and time campaigning in the state during the primary.
Florida held its presidential primary on Jan. 31 this despite party rules against any state other than the four designated early states—Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina and Nevada—holding primaries before the first Tuesday in March.