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Inter-GOP schism over early FL primary heats up

by Dara Kam | March 31st, 2011

GOP leaders in South Carolina and Iowa are pushing national Republican leaders to yank next year’s convention from the Sunshine State unless lawmakers change the presidential preference primary date.

South Carolina GOP Chairwoman Karen Floyd sent a letter to members of the Republican National Committee this morning saying Florida is “thumbing its nose” at the committee’s rules, Politico today.

“Simply put, if Florida does not respect the process by which our primary calendar was set, the RNC should not be bound to the process by which the convention site was selected,” Floyd wrote.

GOP Chairman Matt Strawn sent out a statement backing up Floyd.

Florida’s 2012 primary is currently set for Jan. 31, a violation of both parties’ rules requiring the primary to be held no earlier than in March.

Florida GOP leaders aren’t backing down. They say they’re doing what they can to ensure that Florida plays an integral role in the selection of the 2012 Republican presidential nominee.

Get over it, Senate President Mike Haridopolos suggested in a statement. The Merritt Island Republican and U.S. Senate candidate wants the Sunshine State to be fifth in the primary lineup, after New Hampshire, Iowa, South Carolina and Nevada.

Read Haridopolos’ and House Speaker Dean Cannon’s reactions after the jump.

“It continues to amaze me that Republican leaders in other states feel threatened by Florida in next year’s presidential preference primary. I have said all along that Florida does not want to jump the traditional early states of New Hampshire, Iowa, South Carolina or Nevada. We simply want to go fifth.
As the ultimate swing state with a population reflective of the country’s demographics, Florida should have a significant role as early in the nominating process as possible. Vice President Biden said last week that the President Obama’s fortunes for reelection rest on Florida. That should be our total focus.
Idle threats by other states are not productive. Unified Republicans will gather in Tampa in August 2012 to select the person who will replace Barrack Obama as President of the United States,” Haridopolos said in a statement.

House Speaker Dean Cannon, R-Winter Park, issued a terse one-liner: “I look forward to meeting Chairman Floyd and Chairman Strawn in Tampa next summer.”

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5 Responses to “Inter-GOP schism over early FL primary heats up”

  1. Big Johnson Says:

    Florida republicans have decided they will select the next candidate and winner of the election. How nice for them, the United States of America*

    *(according to Florida)

  2. ELC Says:

    I already see where we are headed and the elections haven’t even begun. Come on guys-give us a break. If all the Republicans can do is fight amongst themselves-well kiss 2012 good-bye. As an Independent I was hoping to hear some positive news for once, but I can see now that’s not going to happen. How do you expect people to vote for a Republican Candidate when you can’t stop
    fighting amongst yourselves-you all act like bullying school boys. I suggest you all grow-up before we really have to vote or else the worst President in History aside from Carter will be voted in again.

  3. Sully Says:

    I am not sure how or why it is such an assumption that New Hampshire and Iowa should play such a prominent role in picking the politicians that advance to the highest office in the world. So many politicians are afraid of challenging these states that they refuse to speak out due to it being held against them during the primary. However, we need to stop being held hostage to these handful of states and really let states like Florida which have more of an impact in ’12 take a prominent role.

  4. Kevin Says:

    These Florida republican politicians are all giddy with themselves, flaunting their veto proof tea party super majority like a bunch of steroid raging ball players. I hope RNC leaders pull the convention from Tampa, and that the area business leaders make them pay for their glib attitudes at the polls for letting millions of convention dollars walk out the door because of their unfounded sense of entitlement. On the other hand if Florida is involved in picking the republican candidate to go against President Obama they will likely choose a hardcore unelectable whackadoddle like Sarah Palin or Ron Paul helping ensure an easy re-election for Obama.

  5. Searcher Says:

    Kevin is RIGHT AGAIN. You da MAN, KEV!

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