Curly Haugland, one of the North Dakota Republican Party’s elected representatives to the Republican National Committee, has caused quite a stir with comments about the presidential nomination process.
According to Haugland, who sits on the RNC Rules Committee, all of these state votes getting intense attention from the media are meaningless. He says not a single state delegate is bound to a candidate at the national convention, even on the first ballot.
“The media has created the perception that the voters choose the nomination,” Haugland told CNBC recently. “That’s the conflict here.”
Haugland has been ripped for these comments by national media figures on the right and the left, from Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity to Rachel Maddow.
He’s also getting some flak from his own state party.
“Curly is speaking for himself,” NDGOP Chairman Kelly Armstrong told me. “His comments do not represent the views of the NDGOP.”
After reading those comments in an earlier post Haugland called to respond saying, while he certainly does not claim to have any say in the internal workings of the NDGOP, he is elected by Republicans in the state to the RNC to help influence RNC issues. Like delegate rules.
But now Congressman Kevin Cramer, one of the NDGOP’s top elected officials in the state, is taking some shots at Haugland as well.
Appearing on Chris Berg’s 6:30 Point of View program (video above), Cramer kind of wrote Haugland off as irrelevant.
“Curly is one of these guys, he means well, he sort of likes to talk about the rules, and sort of dig into them…but you know he brings these things up and usually they roll their eyes, pat him on the head, and hope he buys the next round at the cocktail party and say isn’t he fun to have around,” Cramer said.
Those are some biting words.
This national election, and the divide over presidential politics, has been rough for Republicans so far. Locally as well as nationally.