Reince Priebus, RNC Strike Challenger Mark Willis With Ron Paul Write-in Candidacy

The battle within the Republican Party continues as Maine National Committeeman Mark Willis has officially entered the race for Republican National Committee chair. Since the announcement, as reported by Undercover Porcupine in “Maine National Committeeman Willis Running For RNC Chair“, the race has heated up.

Willis, a veteran of the United States Army who was endorsed by the Ron Paul campaign, successfully defeated Hayes Gahagan at the Maine State Republican Convention last May to become National Committeeman.

Now the race heats up as Reince Priebus and his supporters aim to maintain control, as the race begins to look more and more like the tumultuous 2012 Republican presidential primary. Like former Congressman Ron Paul, National Committeeman Mark Willis is considered a longshot with little chance defeating Priebus. It would appear, that like former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney, the current Chair will win re-election.

So why the battle?

In an article from the DailyCaller titled “Drama in RNC election as Ron Paul supporter makes run for chairman“, various members of the Republican National Committee have questioned Mark Willis on an issue from the general election. As Republicans cry about rehashing the past, California National Committeeman Shawn Steel does just that in pointing out Willis was a write-in candidate for Vice President in Maine, on a ticket with former Congressman Paul.

Evidently, National Committeeman Steel and others at the RNC have not done their research into Maine law. This comes as little surprise as the RNC was incapable of even doing research into their own bylaws under Reince Priebus.

In a letter to members of the RNC, National Committeeman Steel said this:

I learned that Mark Willis was listed as an official and “declared” write-in candidate on the state of Maine’s 2012 general [September] election ballot – serving as Ron Paul’s Vice Presidential running mate – and standing against the Republican Presidential nominee and Vice-Presidential running mate. The following link will take you the State of Maine Secretary of State’s Office listing of declared write-in candidates for the November 2012 ballot. Mark Willis is the second name on the list, listed as Ron Paul’s running mate. In the “Date Filed” column it shows that the required forms were filed with the Maine Secretary of State on September 24, 2012 – almost a full month after the Republican National Convention where we officially nominated Gov. Romney and Rep. Ryan.

Now we know National Committeeman Steel and the Republican National Committee can read. But can they research? Here is some simple detective work.

In the State of Maine, the law states that four presidential electors must nominate a ticket for it to become official. This means that four presidential electors must file paperwork with the State, confirming their consent to the ticket, in order for it to become valid for the general election. The filing paperwork, found here, does not, however, require candidate consent. This means that while the Ron Paul/Mark Willis write-in ticket was valid in Maine, it was entered in by four presidential electors without consent from former Congressman Paul or National Committeeman Willis.

This is exactly what the Maine National Committeeman told the DailyCaller, when he stated he had “nothing to do with it.”

While Mark Willis continues to tell the truth, his colleagues on the Republican National Committee continue to resort to the dishonest tactics that led them down a dark road in 2012. It was the smearing and dirty tactics against even their own that turned off so many Americans in the November elections, when many rejected the Republican Party.

In response to the criticism that he did not disavow it, Willis told the DailyCaller that he made a “judgment call.” When faced with how to respond to it, he decided that the right thing to do would be to ignore it. “I made the judgment call to just not do anything, keep it quiet, don’t talk about it, don’t draw attention to it.” Drawing attention to it, of course, would result in increased attention and likely see more Ron Paul supporters, libertarians, and disaffected Republicans shifting away from the Romney/Paul Ryan ticket.

Mark Willis is a former counterintelligence agent in the Army who worked with the United States Army Intelligence And Security Division (INSCOM). Ideally, working in intelligence, he is an intelligent thinker. He knows how to get things done and be smart about his tasks at hand. Becoming a write-in candidate, a ticket with zero chance of winning Maine, would be political suicide with no gain, all loss. It makes no sense. So why would Willis do this? Perhaps some believe the U.S. Army is full of incompetent individuals, but hopefully this is not the case.

Bottom line is, you’re welcome, Priebus and Co. For doing the right thing and helping protect the Republican ticket, the Republican National Committee Chairman and his supporters are attacking National Committeeman Mark Willis. Should Willis had drawn attention to the write-in ticket, further resulting in a damaged Republican ticket? This seems to be what Priebus, Steel, and others endorse.

There’s your next headline everyone: “Priebus, RNC criticize Willis for Protecting Romney/Ryan; Sought Publicity for Paul write-in Candidacy.”

Chris Dixon

About Chris Dixon

Chris Dixon is a libertarian-leaning writer and managing editor for The Liberty Conservative. In addition to his political writing, he also covers baseball for Cleat Geeks and enjoys writing on a number of other topics ranging on Medium.