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September 13th, 2012

Iowa Elector Resigns After Media Uproar

An Iowa presidential elector has resigned after the Washington Post reported that she would not support Mitt Romney, the Republican nominee for president, should he win the election this fall.

Melinda Wadsley, one of six Republican electors in the state, told the Associated Press that she may decide not to cast her vote for Romney should he carry Iowa in November. “They’ve never given Ron Paul a fair shot, and I’m disgusted with that. I’d like to show them how disgusted I am,” Wadsley was quoted saying.

Thursday evening, the Republican Party of Iowa sent out a press release with an update on the situation.  “I have accepted Melinda Wadlsey’s resignation this afternoon effective immediately,” said Republican Party of Iowa Chairman A.J. Spiker.  “The Republican Party of Iowa State Central Committee will now begin the process of selecting a new Presidential Elector from the Fourth District.”

Wadsley’s statement angered many Republican activists around the state.  Shortly after noon (and before Wadsley’s resignation was announced), I sent the following letter to Iowa GOP Chairman Spiker, National Committeewoman Tamara Scott, and National Committeeman Steve Scheffler.

The Washington Post has published an article that says one of Iowa’s Republican Electors is considering voting for Ron Paul should Romney win this November.  As I’m sure you are all aware, getting to the necessary 270 electoral votes is difficult for any Republican candidate, but is especially so this year with the 12 battleground states.  Can someone explain to me how on earth someone like Melinda Wadsley was elected to be an elector when she refuses to support our nominee?

This behavior is getting really old.  This behavior also puts Iowa’s First-in-the-Nation status at risk because it bolsters the arguments of those who would like to elect presidents by a national popular vote.  The national popular vote proposal is something that you rightfully oppose, yet the actions of a select few in our state may help create the environment where it comes to pass.

This is very similar to the rules fight at the Republican National Convention.  On one hand, Iowa Republicans do everything they can to defend Iowa’s preferred status, but on the other hand, they conduct themselves in a way that allows Iowa’s opponents to make rational arguments for changes to the nominating system.

If you truly care about maintaining Iowa’s First-in-the-Nation status, you will remind Ms. Wadsley that the primary is over.  Like it or not, Mitt Romney is our nominee, and her role as an elector is to represent Iowa Republicans, not her own self-interest.

Wadsley’s quick resignation is a promising sign, but since Ron Paul supporters dominate the Republican Party of Iowa’s State Central Committee, the chance of selecting another anti-Romney elector still exists. will follow the selection process of Iowa’s new presidential elector.

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About the Author

Craig Robinson
Craig Robinson serves as the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Prior to founding Iowa's largest conservative news site, Robinson served as the Political Director of the Republican Party of Iowa during the 2008 Iowa Caucuses. In that capacity, Robinson planned and organized the largest political event in 2007, the Iowa Straw Poll, in Ames, Iowa. Robinson also organized the 2008 Republican caucuses in Iowa, and was later dispatched to Nevada to help with the caucuses there. Robinson cut his teeth in Iowa politics during the 2000 caucus campaign of businessman Steve Forbes and has been involved with most major campaigns in the state since then. His extensive political background and rolodex give him a unique perspective from which to monitor the political pulse of Iowa.

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