Report From the Georgia Republican Mass Meetings / Conventon Process Begins Today

Thousands of Georgia Republicans gather today in hundreds of Mass Meetings across the state with the purpose of electing delegates and alternates to their county conventions to be held in March.

County conventions will elect delegates and alternates to the GOP state convention (held in May) and congressional district conventions (April)–each of which elect delegates and alternates to the Republican national convention. The national convention, of course, selects and nominates the Republican candidate for President.

There are more than 50 here in Wendell Willard’s House district alone. Reports are that 400 have shown in Gwinnett,  300 in Forsyth, 150 in Hall, 250 in Cherokee and 110 in Douglas County.

Any reports or updates in your areas? Strength of any particular campaign?

UPDATE: there were apparently more than 500 attendees in Forsyth County, much larger than the initial report.

28 comments

  1. Bridget says:

    COBB :: This was our first year doing pre-registration online. It was a pretty smooth process to get everyone in the door. We had 435 pre-register, and there’s probably 600-700 people here.

    We just wrapped.

  2. Andre says:

    I attended and presided over the House District 66 Mass Meeting. We tripled the number of delegates we sent to the Fulton County Republican Convention from two years ago; and found two new people to lead their precinct for the GOP.

    There are quite a few black Republicans in south Fulton County.

    That is a good foundation to build upon.

      • It was a separate event from the GOP mass meeting — same situation in Forsyth. The Gingrich event, which came after the mass meeting, had the very large crowd. I wasn’t there, however, and just passed on the number reported to me.

        Apparently in Forsyth about half to two-thirds of the people who showed up for the Newt event, which also followed the GOP mass meeting, had to be turned away at the door for lack of room/seating inside.

        • troutbum70 says:

          Ahh just messing with you. It definitely wasn’t close to 2,000. We were definitely “Paul”ed in Gwinnett with a good majority of the people there Ron Paul supporters. Kids we’ll never see again after this year. There was actually one lady walking around giving out lists of names to add in each Precinct. It was 314 in attendance I believe and you can see the total of Delegates that Jon posted below.

  3. Justin Tomczak says:

    Cobb County had a solid turnout and a well run meeting – Chairman Joe Dendy and 1st Vice Chair Eric Thornson were organized and it paid off. Hats off to them.

    Ron Paul had his folks out in force. One of their memos must have said to arrive early since they were lining up at 7:30 AM for a 10 AM start. Props to them for dedication and an ever watchful eye for any GOP establishment coordinated efforts to deny them their delegate /alternate spots (which I did not observe). They were also very active on their smart phones working to fill in open delegate/alternate spots with folks who couldn’t make today’s meeting (but who will of course all make the March meeting and see to it that Congressman Paul becomes President Paul, the Saviour of the free World/Auditor of the Fed).

    I saw a good amount of Newt stickers and one honest looking, hard working family of Santorum supporters. A lot of flyers for Newt rallies were distributed and interest seemed high. I also observed a car with 32+ Newt stickers affixed to the bumpers, windows, doors, etc…

    I was too busy serving as a House District Chair to be much help to the Romney Campaign, but he will have my absentee ballot arriving on his behalf next week. I like aspects of all four GOP candidates, but personally believe that Romney offers the best chance of victory in November. I could be wrong, but this wouldn’t be a first for me.

    Bottom line – energy was high and everyone is excited about the Fall election and working hard to replace Obama with whoever emerges from the GOP Primary.

    • NorthGeorgiaGirl says:

      The majority of the Ron Paul crowd will not be excited to help anyone but…Ron Paul…

      After our county had a crowd of Ron Paulers attempt to take over the convention in 2008, only 2 of them stuck around and stayed involved for 4 years. I wish we could convince some of them to turn their energies towards other candidates and working on local things instead of pinning their hopes for the survival of America on one Presidential candidate.

      • Lo Mein says:

        I wouldn’t blame them for not sticking around, after how they were treated at that State Convention. Georgia GOP, always so welcoming to new blood. Us old farts were embarrassed.

      • esca8652 says:

        The reason why we won’t vote for any other Republican besides Ron Paul is because they are all NOT conservatives. If you don’t believe me just look up their voting records (which EVERYONE should do before they make an educated vote). Ron Paul is for getting rid of the income tax, sales tax, and lowering corporate tax to 15%, bringing our toops home, abolishing the IRS (something JFK died trying to do), and to make matters even better, he has a solid record. Lets look at Santorum now, he voted to raise the debt FIVE times, he already doesn’t sound very conservative…. Please, EVERYONE, GET EDUCATED before you vote! I didn’t when I voted for Obama when I should have.

  4. Doug Deal says:

    Bibb county elected about 90 delegates to the county convention, which is about double the normal number. My precinct has someone from my precint that didn’t live in my house for the first time since I have been going.

    • seenbetrdayz says:

      It’s shocking to see supporters who actually work for their candidate, isn’t it? Most voters are just lever-pullers who show up for primary elections with an “eh, you’ll do I guess” mindset when making their selection. It’s practically ritualistic. It’s as though they don’t really want to be there, and instead are just keeping with tradition.

      So, I suppose, when that seems to be the norm, Ron Paul might look like a cult, lol.

  5. chefdavid says:

    Am I missing something? Is the number of delegates based on the number that show up? I thought up here in waterland (Dade) we had a set number of delegates. Or is that just in populated counties?

  6. it’s a set number of delegates in each individual precinct to your county convention.

    usually, if you show up at the mass meeting level, you get to go on to the county convention as a delegate or alternate. but not always — one “side” (campaign) in your precinct can turn out enough people to form a majority and elect other people to those slots. that can sometimes create a lot of ill will.

    • So first they have these – where you elect X number of delegates (or up to X if no one shows up) per precinct to the county convention. Then at the county convention I assume you choose Y people per county to go to the state convention?

      And is the county chair elected at each county convention by the precinct delegates?

      Just curious how it works really.

      • mass meetings occur in larger counties in february; no cost to attendees. precinct by precinct, those who show (who must be registered voters) then vote to elect delegates and alternates to their county convention, held in march.

        each precinct is designated a certain number of allotted delegates (and matching alternate number). If you attend, you can add friends and neighbors who live in the precinct — must be done in writing on the ‘elected delegates’ list that each precinct votes to create.

        However, if no one shows up from a precinct, no one can be “added” in writing by people outside the precinct. In other words, no election can be held, no one can be elected.

        In smaller counties, mass meetings/aka precinct meetings are held in March, just prior to the county conventions. (All counties hold county conventions in March).

        From the County, delegates are elected to the Congressional District conventions (all held in April). Each Congressional district elects delegates and alternates to the national convention. Each Congressional district gets 3 delegates and three alternates to go to the national convention.

        Further from the County Conventions, delegates are also elected to the STATE Convention, held in May. 36 delegates and alternates are elected to the National Convention from this (matching the same number as the number elected from Congressional District conventions: 36).

        Georgia has 72 delegates and alternates to national. It’s the largest number on Super Tuesday for any state.

        **County Chairmen and officers are elected every other year (not during election years). Therefore one year out of every four there is no convention series.

        • So let’s just say theoretically everyone in your precinct/county/congressional district is a Santorum person. But that Romney wins the congressional district delegates. Would a Santorum person then go to the national convention as a pledged delegate for Romney?

          I ask because there’s a decent chance that the Republicans could have a brokered or contested convention, and I would guess Romney (in this example) wouldn’t want a bunch of Santorum people pledged to Romney on the first vote who could then pick Santorum on the second vote?

          I know that the campaigns on the Democratic side have serious veto power over who gets to be their delegates – even if they’re selected at a county or congressional district convention or caucus.

          Again – just curious thanks for the info so far.

          • Andre says:

            Huttman, if you’re asking whether the Republican Party has what the Democrats call “presidential candidate right of review,” then the answer is no.

            For those unfamiliar, the Democrats have a rule in their delegate selection process that says, “Prior to the selection of national convention delegates and alternates, the state party shall convey to the presidential candidate, or that candidate’s authorized representative(s), a list of all persons who have filed for delegate or alternate positions pledged to that presidential candidate. All such delegate and alternate candidates shall be considered bona fide supporters of the presidential candidate whom they have pledged to support, unless the presidential candidate, or that candidate’s authorized representative(s), signifies otherwise in writing to the state party by a date certain as specified in the state’s Delegate Selection Plan.”

            In other words, in 2008, it would have been nearly impossible for Obama supporters to have been National Convention delegates for Hillary. The Hillary campaign would have struck them from the list of candidates seeking a delegate position.

            On the Republican side, however, it is whomever shows up at the precinct caucuses that sends delegates and alternates to the next level. There is no presidential candidate right of review. A person could theoretically be a pledged delegate to Romney, but be a Santorum supporter in their heart, and if there is a second ballot, switch to Santorum.

            Still, Georgia law contains a provision that prevents National Convention delegates from switching their vote on the second ballot.

            Any person selected as a delegate or delegate alternate to such national convention shall file a qualification oath with the Secretary of State pledging support at the convention to the candidate of their political party or body for the office of President of the United States for whom they are selected to support. The oath shall state that the delegate or delegate alternate affirms to support such candidate until the candidate is either nominated by such convention or receives less than 35 percent of the votes for nomination by such convention during any balloting, or until the candidate releases the delegates from such pledge. No delegate shall be required to vote for such candidate after two convention nominating ballots have been completed.

            Georgia state law locks National Convention delegates in for two ballots, then releases them to the unpledged pool.

            One more thing, Georgia has 76 delegates to the Republican National Convention this year.

            • Lo Mein says:

              They’re not “locked in” for even one ballot, if the candidate they’re pledged to releases them before the convention.

  7. Jon Richards says:

    In Gwinnett, we have 709 total names recorded. 580 are delegates, 89 are alternates. The remainder were either disqualified primarily due to registering in a precinct the person doesn’t live in or because the person registered at the start of the meeting, but wasn’t listed in a delegate/alternate form.

    We have been unable to locate voter registration information for some of the delegates/alternates, so the final number may change.

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