State GOP Chairman: 'Once we get past the convention, most of what happened here won't matter'

Posted at 12:22 AM, Jul 22, 2016
and last updated 2016-07-22 02:22:39-04

CLEVELAND -- Colorado delegates, who overwhelmingly supported Sen. Ted Cruz, must come home from the Republican National Convention and convince others to vote Republican.

During the roll call of states, Colorado only cast four votes for Republican nominee Donald Trump. The other 33 were given to Cruz.

Some of the delegates watched Trump's speech from higher in the arena instead of on the floor.

"We had a bunch of alternates in our delegation that were Trump-pledged alternates. We're going to swap them and have them come down, but it's not because the people who weren't Trump delegates don't want to be there, it's because we want to do a favor to the alternates and let them be on the floor during the Trump speech," said Colorado GOP Chairman Steve House.

House was one of the four delegates who cast a vote for Trump. He spoke with Denver7 from the RNC in Cleveland on the convention's final day.

"There's a lot of people of our delegation that are wearing Trump material, Trump hats. (Rep.) Ken Buck gave a tremendous overview this morning on why we need to elect Donald Trump, at our breakfast," said House.

Denver7 asked House if he had managed to convince any of the 33 other delegates to be Trump supporters.

"Almost everybody's on board. There's certainly not everybody, but I'm going to tell you it's at least two-thirds of the delegation," said House. "We're talking 37 people total. Maybe there's 10 holdouts or five holdouts at this point. The delegation is a very small fraction of the issue. The issue is a million Republicans and somewhere between 300,000 and 400,000 unaffiliated voters. Once we get past the convention, most of what happened here won't matter."

He said Colorado is still in play despite being placed in the back of the arena, with many elected representatives avoiding the convention altogether, like Reps. Mike Coffman and Scott Tipton; or those who left early, like Sen. Cory Gardner.

"You really look at (Reps.) Mike (Coffman) and Scott (Tipton) especially, those guys are in very difficult races. If they'd have come here and spent time, I would have probably pushed on them a little and said, the real work for them to do is in Colorado, not in Cleveland. (Senate candidate) Darryl Glenn was here, but I told him, 'Don't be here all week because you've got to go back to Colorado and win a race,'" said House.

As for the state's placement in the back of the hall, he said it was by design and he would probably do the same.

"You saw Colorado and Texas sitting right next to each other, back in the far right hand side of the stage. Texas is a big delegation, and I mean a really big delegation, but because Colorado and Texas were not heavily favoring Donald Trump in the primary and caucus process, we were right where we should have been. I would expect any time we're not with the nominee, we're not going to be up close. I don't think we were treated unfairly or any differently than we would have been in any other convention we were ever in," said House.

Even though Colorado went for Cruz, House believes there will be plenty of attention by the Republican Party and Trump in the state.

"We've already got plans. You know, we're working with how the next three months play out, what we need to do. We got a budget that we're looking at on how to hire staff," said House. "I think that there were no less than seven other delegations, maybe eight, who have come to me and said, we're going to put people on buses to come to Colorado and help win."


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