News / USA

    GOP Organization Leader Sees ‘Little Chance’ of Contested Convention

    Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus speaks during the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) at the D.C. suburb of National Harbor, Maryland, March 4, 2016.
    Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus speaks during the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) at the D.C. suburb of National Harbor, Maryland, March 4, 2016.
    VOA News

    As squabbling Republican presidential candidates prepared Friday for nominating contests this weekend in several states, the leader of the deeply divided party organization told a gathering of conservatives that a contested convention in July likely would be averted.

    "The odds of a contested convention are very small," Reince Priebus, the Republican National Committee's chairman, said in addressing activists at the annual Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in a Maryland suburb of Washington.

    Priebus assured conservative activists that the party would unite behind whoever is chosen as nominee at the July convention. "They're going to get the full backing and the 100 percent support of the Republican Party," he said, emphasizing that the party apparatus is not working for or against any single candidate. "We don't take sides, regardless of what you may think or read."

    Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, second from left, gestures as Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, and Ohio Gov. John Kasich look on at a Republican presidential primary debate in Detroit, March 3, 2016.
    Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, second from left, gestures as Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, and Ohio Gov. John Kasich look on at a Republican presidential primary debate in Detroit, March 3, 2016.

    Some Republicans have been eager to derail New York business mogul Donald Trump, front-runner in the primary race that has been reduced to four competitors. Candidate Ben Carson officially ended his White House bid Friday, telling the CPAC audience that "there are a lot of people who love me, they just won't vote for me."

    Carson had already declined to participate in Thursday's debate with the remaining candidates: Trump, U.S. Senators Ted Cruz of Texas and Marco Rubio of Florida, and Governor John Kasich of Ohio. The four jousted in a debate in the Midwestern city of Detroit remarkable for its crudeness.

    On Thursday, the Republicans' 2012 nominee, Mitt Romney, gave a televised speech attacking Trump as unfit to lead and calling him a "con man" who is "playing the members of the American public for suckers."

    At the conservative convention, mention of Romney's name brought boos, the Associated Press reported.  

    "There are 1,237 delegates needed to be the nominee. There are 1,744 delegates left to be distributed," Priebus said, adding there's "a long way to go."

    Republican U.S. presidential candidate Marco Rubio listens as rival candidate Donald Trump speaks at the U.S. Republican presidential debate in Detroit, Michigan, March 3, 2016.
    Republican U.S. presidential candidate Marco Rubio listens as rival candidate Donald Trump speaks at the U.S. Republican presidential debate in Detroit, Michigan, March 3, 2016.

    Meanwhile, the presidential candidates — including Democratic contenders Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders — were preparing Friday for this weekend's presidential nominating contests. They're scheduled in five states: Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine and Nebraska. 

    Trump walks back on torture

    On Friday, Trump backed away from statements he made at Thursday's debate supporting torture and what he called things that are "a hell of a lot worse."

    Trump said in a statement sent to The Wall Street Journal that he would "use every legal power ... to stop those terrorist enemies." But he told the newspaper, "I do, however, understand that the United States is bound by laws and treaties, and I will not order our military or other officials to violate those laws."

    His moderate tone was a reversal from his tough talk during the debate, when he suggested he would break international laws against torture.

    "Can you imagine ... these animals over in the Middle East that chop off heads, sitting around talking and seeing that we're having a hard problem with waterboarding?" Trump said Thursday. "We should go tougher than waterboarding."

    President Barack Obama banned waterboarding — an interrogation method that simulates drowning — just after he took office in 2009.

    Subsequently last June, Congress reaffirmed the ban on harsh interrogation techniques on a bipartisan 78-21 vote. Using torture would require the law's repeal.

    Raucus debate

    Trump fended off intense attacks from his closest rivals during the debate, dismissing them as "lying Ted" and "little Marco." Cruz and Rubio swiped back at the New York businessman, while Kasich declined to throw punches.

    The debate was filled with the yelling, personal insults and off-color remarks that have lately featured prominently in the 2016 Republican race for president.

    Within five minutes of the debate's opening, Trump had bragged about the size of his genitals. Rubio "said if my hands were small, then something else is small," Trump said, holding up his hands. "I guarantee there's no problem. I guarantee you."

    WATCH: Republican Debate in Detroit Gets Dirty

    Republican Debate in Detroit Gets Dirtyi
    X
    March 04, 2016 10:44 PM
    The Republican candidates met in Detroit for a debate. The evening was filled with the same yelling, personal insults and off-color remarks that have featured prominently in the 2016 Republican race.

    The bitter Trump-Rubio rivalry continued with the ex-reality television star referring to the Florida senator as a "little guy [who] has lied so much about my record."

     Rubio fired back: "You ask him a question about the economy, and the first thing he does is go into the 'little guy' thing."

    Cruz, who had a stronger-than-expected performance during this week's crucial Super Tuesday nominating contests, also slammed Trump's vitriolic style. "Nominating Donald would be a disaster," he said.

    The low-polling Kasich rose above the fray.

    "I have never tried to go and get into these kinds of scrums that we are seeing here," Kasich said. "People say, wherever I go, 'You seem to be the adult on stage.' "

    WATCH: Voter Numbers Reveal Key Insights into 2016 Race

    Voter Numbers Reveal Key Insights into 2016 Racei
    X
    VOA News
    March 05, 2016 12:59 AM
    With Super Tuesday voting complete, we now have a more detailed picture of how voters across the United States feel about the candidates. Here are some of the numbers from key voting states.

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    Comments
         
    by: 1worldnow from: Earth
    March 04, 2016 11:50 AM
    We have three choices this election, Hillary the Hypocrite, Trump the Grump, or Obama gets a third term. In other words, WE ALL LOSE! I would rather Obama, even though he rates the worst leader in any time in human history!

    by: Marcus Aurelius II from: NJ USA
    March 04, 2016 11:14 AM
    To understand Donald Trump you must understand "New York street smart." Those creampuffs from other parts of the country don't stand a chance against him. I grew up in Queens but there are tougher. Brooklyn is tougher than Queens but the toughest by far is the Bronx. That's where I'm from. Compared to the Bronx, EVERYONE else is a creampuff. It's in the blood, comes out of the soil, just like Dracula.

    Born in the Bronx and growing up in Queens I was a child terror. They didn't know how to deal with me. My own parents told me when I was 8 years old they'd send me away to boarding school if they could have afforded it. Nobody, not even Trump can beat the Bronx. By comparison, Mogadishu is a picnic ground. Just be grateful Trump is not from the Bronx or he'd be even far tougher than he already is. Fighting back and fighting dirty are in the blood. We called it "ranking people out."

    by: Godwin from: Nigeria
    March 04, 2016 10:31 AM
    Ordinarily, one’d say, ‘enough of this childishness’ to the unbridled school debating society-type outbursts at the Republican presidential debates, But seeing it goes beyond mere debating to outmaneuver opposition, especially with the Egyptian student seemingly reflecting echoes from the debate, one wonders if the attacks on Donald should be taken more seriously. Never before has a presidential debate taken this shape – rather than face issues in the American society, polity and economy, Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio and John Kasich are decisively determined that Trump must not win.

    The Democrats deviate from facing themselves to make Trump issue in their own debate when they haven’t yet succeeded in their party. To show the hysteric levels to the alarm the American politicians feel over Donald Trump emerging president, Mitt Romney abandoned everything and went on paid unofficial/unwarranted campaign against Trump. Should Trump eventual win the race later in the year, there’s only one thing to expect: a repeat of 1960s orchestrated assassination of J.F.Kennedy. The Americans want Trump, but the politicians’re afraid of him. Investigative journalism, not FBI, should find out that thing in Trump American politicians’re scared of. Kasich/Rubio/Cruz know they’re off-key, and’that refusal to stop attacking Trump makes them immature.

    by: Anonymous
    March 04, 2016 10:24 AM
    Trump's remarks and plans make sense than other candidates, especially in economic. If he changes his tone on bad mouth others, he can win more supports.

    by: Augustus
    March 04, 2016 10:09 AM
    Could you imagine any of these uncouth clowns being president

    by: williweb from: Phoenix Arizona USA
    March 04, 2016 9:21 AM
    From the beginning Trump emphasized that he will not be beholden to donors, and that pledge still stands. The people are choosing Trump. The Washington cartel gets no choice.

    by: Lou from: Atlanta
    March 04, 2016 9:01 AM
    I watched waiting for a fist fight to break out.

    by: Moses608 from: Kenya
    March 04, 2016 8:51 AM
    He looks at what others do not want to look at says what others are ashamed to say and points to things which very many people are not ready to point at.The whole world is no longer decent,forces out there are just dirty.What would a decent man do with jihadists,Putin,china,Teyyip Ordagan of Turkey is not clean,which means a fellow of Trumps type is needed to arrest this trend.Indeed the world should be ready for dramatic events for the next four years.

    by: Mark from: Virginia
    March 04, 2016 7:32 AM
    Woe to this Country, if Trump wins the nomination and the Presidency. If you think the U.S. has lost credibility now, wait until that braggart sits in the Oval Office. My confidence in Clinton is only marginally better, but still lacking anything concrete. The next four years, at least, will be a very rough ride for America.
    In Response

    by: Marcus Aurelius II from: NJ USA
    March 04, 2016 9:08 AM
    Woe to the country if he doesn't win. The Koch brothers and their friends have bought the entire government and run it for their benefit. The problem is they've run it into the ground. Then they stole everyone else's money to make up for it. Why are they really so scared of Trump? Because they can't own him, they can't control him, and he's going to bring their game to an end.

    by: Turkan from: istanbul
    March 04, 2016 7:13 AM
    He can only get along well with Putin.
    In Response

    by: nicker boy from: NEW york
    March 05, 2016 1:07 AM
    are yoou really russian?I just can't believe what you replyed.
    In Response

    by: Ivan Khromov from: Moscow
    March 04, 2016 7:55 PM
    America is more than just a country, or even than a superpower - she is the Apex of the World. When she does well, the world around her also brightens. When she falls ill, the shadows spread elsewhere. How brightly shone she under Ronald Reagan! What miracles she worked, what wonders! If we are now engulfed by darkness, if Freedom ebbs, if progress falters, it's just because she fades away. Not long ago it all seemed finished - my love of yonder lay in ashes, when, on a sudden, there glinted such a tremendous ray of hope! I greet you, Donald Trump, I trust you! You are the Right Man, you will win it! I cannot cast for you my ballot, but I devote to you my heart!

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