Posted on | March 17, 2012 | 53 Comments
Libertarians or anarchists? The NY Times reports, you decide:
ST. PETERS, Mo. — Voters here in St. Charles County may not get a say in who will be the next Republican presidential nominee after a disorderly caucus on Saturday caused organizers to adjourn before delegates were selected.
The unrest began as the caucus at Francis Howell North High School was called to order more than a hour late, then delayed again when a member of the crowd refused to put away a video camera, as required by the rules outlined by the local Republican Party.
“People attended the meeting with an agenda,” said Eugene Dokes, chairman of the St. Charles County Republican Central Committee. “When that happens, it’s really hard to accept the authority of the room.”
Members of crowd began shouting, “We make the rules!” among other chants as organizers tried to regain control, which they did briefly. But the shouting quickly escalated when it came time to appoint a chair of the caucus.
The police were called in, and two people were arrested on trespassing charges after being asked to leave when the meeting was then called to an early close.
This is what the Paulbot Blog-Troll Caucus is like in real life.
UPDATE: The Kansas City Star:
Confusion and contention also marred several other crowded Republican gatherings, the Associated Press reported.
In Clay County, arguments between Paul supporters and others became so intense that the caucus chairman threatened to have voters removed by force.
Backers of the Texas congressman said they were upset their views weren’t being heard. “We’re just a little frustrated because caucuses are supposed to be run by a very strict set of rules,” said Paul supporter John Findlay, who lost his bid to become caucus chairman. “We raised a number of points of order, points of information, points of parliamentary inquiry, many of which have been ignored.”
These bogus “parliamentary” tactics are straight out of the radical playbook: Purposeful disruptions, intended to delay the normal procedure of events and provoke confrontations, with the hope of making such a farce of the meeting that regular citizens are discouraged from participating.
Go to a mental ward, give a psychotic a copy of Roberts Rules of Order, and after he’s released, he can begin a promising new career as a Ron Paul activist — as soon as he goes off his meds, that is.
UPDATE II: Shane Vander Hart:
I’m tired of the drama that Paul is causing when he has zero chance of winning anything.
Look, I love it that Paul gets college kids excited about the the concept of liberty. I’ve got a profound libertarian streak myself and, in fact, voted for Bob Barr for president in 2008. But obnoxiousness is practically an ideology to some of these kooks. Disrupting meetings with “point of order” gibberish is akin to those wacko tax protesters who claim they have some sovereign right that recognizes no higher authority than the county sheriff.
They don’t have a political philosophy, they have a personality disorder.
UPDATE III: ABC News on the Charles County debacle:
[Police] arrested two Paul supporters and ended the caucuses early. A joint-jurisdictional police helicopter arrived on the scene. Kipers said about 10 officers arrived in total.
“Two people were arrested for trespassing after receiving numerous warnings to leave the school property,” the St. Peters police said in a press release. “Both subjects were transported to St. Peters Justice Center where they were booked for Trespassing and released on a summons.”
The St. Peters police identified the Paul supporters as Brent Safford, 45, of O’Fallon, Mo., and Kenneth Suitter, 55, of St. Charles.
OK, somebody Google these characters and see what you can find out about them. I’ll guess that if you inquire among local Republicans, you’d find these two are widely regarded as obnoxious fanatics.
UPDATE IV: By the way, hat-tip to Dan Collins. I called him while we were out on our family excursion today and he shared the news.
Bob McCarty blogs about ”The St. Patrick’s Day Massacre” in Charles County, complete with video of Stafford’s arrest.
At this point, the establishment GOP types in the room were aghast. Who were these people? Who do they support? One woman said, “I’ve never seen them before and I’ve lived here for 50 years!” . . .
One of the members of the county GOP committee said to me that some of these people had been working and organizing and planning with the GOP for years and had never seen the people who were dictating the terms of the caucus. They were upset because they saw the fruits of their labor being taken away from them and used for an agenda they didn’t agree with.