A gaggle of Ron Paul supporters from the Maine delegation led a brief protest in the halls of the GOP convention site, shortly before Paul Ryan was set to take the stage Wednesday night in Tampa.
“As Maine goes, so goes the nation!” they chanted, repeatedly and loudly enough to be heard from inside one of the media booths.
One of the protesters, as they made their way toward the exits, held up a shirt that said: “We are the future.”
Another delegate, Bernie Johnson, said the mini-march was impromptu and indicated he wasn’t expecting theatrics on Thursday for when Mitt Romney delivers his nomination address.
But he said Maine delegates remain disappointed by the process – Maine delegates, of which many were backing Paul, were specifically upset by a party rule change that would bind delegates to the results of primaries and caucuses. Such a change would make it more difficult for a candidate like Paul to rack up delegates in local conventions after the fact.
“There were people who were frustrated with the rule change yesterday, with the way people were treated,” Johnson said.
Johnson said he’s always supported the Republican “establishment,” but that Romney has made that “incredibly difficult.” Johnson, a Ron Paul delegate, said he “never thought” it would be a “hard sell” to push limited government and “peace.”