TAMPA: Battle Over 2012 GOP Convention
Earlier this year the GOP awarded next year's presidential convention to Tampa. But now GOP state organizations in Iowa and South Carolina say the convention must be relocated if Florida doesn't move its primary to a date after theirs. Currently Florida's primary is scheduled to be the first, an issue the GOP also squabbled over in 2008.
Florida's 2012 GOP presidential primary is scheduled for Jan. 31. Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada and South Carolina are the only states under the RNC rules that are allowed to hold a presidential caucus or primary before March 1. The Republican National Committee is not budging. "The convention will be in Tampa," said RNC spokesman Sean Spicer. "At the same time, we will enforce the rules agreed to by all states with respect to the primary and caucus calendar." In a letter to RNC members today, South Carolina GOP Chairwoman Karen Floyd said Florida's Republican-led Legislature is "thumbing its nose at the RNC" by refusing to change a 2007 law that states Florida must hold their presidential primary on the last Tuesday in January.