Is the GOP Heading for a Brokered Convention?

On the surface, it sounds implausible. The idea that, after going through the entire primary and caucus season and not having a Republican candidate who owns a majority of delegates to the convention in September is the stuff of movie scripts, not reality.

And yet...

There are some analysts who see the GOP race in such flux and so unsettled that there could be 3 or even 4 candidates who emerge from primary season with enough delegates to challenge for the nomination but no candidate with an absolute majority. This would bring about the nightmare scenario of a brokered convention with wild floor fights and unseemly acrimony - all playing out before a national television audience.

Columnist Tony Blankley is only the latest to suggest such a scenario. His article today is entitled
"None of the Above: GOP Heading to Brokered Convention:"

It is as if each faction of the Grand Old Party feels a stronger passion to defeat its intraparty rival factions than to defeat the Democrats in November. This maximum instinct to deny victory within the party may be a sign of a philosophical rebirth (as in the Goldwater nomination and campaign of 1964), but it is also a sign of a party likely to lose the next general election.
Blankley believes this cannibilism will so damage the frontrunners that several candidates might emerge from the scrum and head to St. Paul with a chance to be the nominee:
I don't have a candidate yet. I either disagree with each on important points or have doubts about the electability of each. But most of all, I fear our intraparty fury will destroy all leaders and send us off to a brokered convention -- and from thence, probably to defeat. If the Democrats have their candidate by February and we are campaigning harshly until August, we surely would start in a deep hole.
You can't dismiss the scenario but I still find it unlikely. Money will be huge and whoever emerges in 3rd place following Super Tuesday on February 5 will probably find their sources of funds drying up as the moneymen move to one of the two candidates who has a realistic shot at winning.

Also, the GOP has 138 "Super Delegates" - many of whom have not committed to a candidate as yet. If one candidate gets within kissing distance of the magic number (50% + 1) of committed delegates, the chances are pretty good that the pros will back that candidate if only to avoid a ruinous floor fight.

The field should narrow even before Super Tuesday to 4 or 5 candidates - perhaps only 3. There would have to be extremely close 3-way races in many states for the brokered convention scenario to come into play. I just don't see that happening.

Still, from a purely entertainment standpoint, it would be fascinating to watch a convention where the nominee was actually decided. Of course, it would destroy the party so perhaps we should all be careful what we wish for.
On the surface, it sounds implausible. The idea that, after going through the entire primary and caucus season and not having a Republican candidate who owns a majority of delegates to the convention in September is the stuff of movie scripts, not reality.

And yet...

There are some analysts who see the GOP race in such flux and so unsettled that there could be 3 or even 4 candidates who emerge from primary season with enough delegates to challenge for the nomination but no candidate with an absolute majority. This would bring about the nightmare scenario of a brokered convention with wild floor fights and unseemly acrimony - all playing out before a national television audience.

Columnist Tony Blankley is only the latest to suggest such a scenario. His article today is entitled
"None of the Above: GOP Heading to Brokered Convention:"

It is as if each faction of the Grand Old Party feels a stronger passion to defeat its intraparty rival factions than to defeat the Democrats in November. This maximum instinct to deny victory within the party may be a sign of a philosophical rebirth (as in the Goldwater nomination and campaign of 1964), but it is also a sign of a party likely to lose the next general election.
Blankley believes this cannibilism will so damage the frontrunners that several candidates might emerge from the scrum and head to St. Paul with a chance to be the nominee:
I don't have a candidate yet. I either disagree with each on important points or have doubts about the electability of each. But most of all, I fear our intraparty fury will destroy all leaders and send us off to a brokered convention -- and from thence, probably to defeat. If the Democrats have their candidate by February and we are campaigning harshly until August, we surely would start in a deep hole.
You can't dismiss the scenario but I still find it unlikely. Money will be huge and whoever emerges in 3rd place following Super Tuesday on February 5 will probably find their sources of funds drying up as the moneymen move to one of the two candidates who has a realistic shot at winning.

Also, the GOP has 138 "Super Delegates" - many of whom have not committed to a candidate as yet. If one candidate gets within kissing distance of the magic number (50% + 1) of committed delegates, the chances are pretty good that the pros will back that candidate if only to avoid a ruinous floor fight.

The field should narrow even before Super Tuesday to 4 or 5 candidates - perhaps only 3. There would have to be extremely close 3-way races in many states for the brokered convention scenario to come into play. I just don't see that happening.

Still, from a purely entertainment standpoint, it would be fascinating to watch a convention where the nominee was actually decided. Of course, it would destroy the party so perhaps we should all be careful what we wish for.