The Colorado Republican Party appears to be imploding, with plenty of accusations and weirdness to keep conspiracies theories alive and destroying whatever unity we may have had. The following Twitter controversy adds a bizarre twist to the aftermath of a caucus season that saw no statewide voting and controversy over disappearing Trump delegates.
As a local party activist who has caucused regularly and been in regular conversation with delegates and former delegates, including those who were at the meetings where paper ballot elections were conducted, I can confirm that the local trust of the party apparatus here has, indeed, been shattered, even among Cruz supporters, like myself. This is true despite the fact that Trump delegate complaints like this one, reported by Breitbart, are hard to verify.
GOP Lost Life Long Republican Larry Wayne Linsey
Due To CO Delegate Fraud. Larry Was A Trump Delegate ! pic.twitter.com/maRIML5qOr
— Richard Weaving (@RichardWeaving) April 10, 2016
Many Republicans have observed heavy-handed manipulation of the process during caucus and seen delegates elected and pledged to Trump, only to have them absent in the final tallies. But these things are not just a concern among Trump supporters.
The anxiety felt here, by my observation, is that the Party’s use of the process and rule-changes to support Cruz is only temporary. It’s widely believed that they have every intention of seeing these delegates abandon Cruz at the convention in July. They are not blind to reports, like the ones in the NY Times, describing Paul Ryan’s “shadow campaign” for the convention. It’s no secret that the national GOP wants nothing to do with either Trump or Cruz.
So, this victory in Colorado may feel hard-won and satisfying to Ted Cruz now, but it feels nothing like that to some of his supporters who fear that he will eventually fall to the same “Brutus blade” that has dogged Trump in this state.