A Republican is busting his own party for what he believes is a violation of its own rules.
Mike Ridgway will be in court today asking a judge for a temporary restraining order to stop the state and Salt Lake County Republican Party from appointing so-called "automatic delegates" to vote at the county and state conventions.
Delegates ultimately decide what names you will see on the ballot in November.
In a filing with the 3rd District Court on Friday, Ridgway wrote, "The Salt Lake County Republican Party consistently violated the prohibitions against appointed delegates from at least as early as 1983."
Ridgway has repeatedly challenged the practice at both state and party conventions.
"It's anti-Democratic," Ridgway said. "It's against everything America stands for. The system is as corrupt as it can be, and absent of action by the court, it will continue to be that way."
County GOP leaders insist they are doing nothing wrong.
State party rules leave delegate allocation up to the county parties.
"Any time he doesn't get his way, he tries to disrupt our party process," Salt Lake County Republican Party Chairman James Evans said about Ridgway. "This time he's filed a frivolous lawsuit."
The county has more than 30 appointed delegates, all of which are elected in some form or another. Most are the Republican elected officials, like the county surveyor and GOP legislators. Other appointed delegates include the county party officers and executive committee members.
For that, Evans said that none of these so-called "automatic delegates" are given a free ticket to vote as a delegate.
"You run in different ways, but you have to go through some kind of contest," Evans said. "So we're all elected."
Ridgway said just because elected officials get a government paycheck "do not give people automatic delegate status under state party rules."
He will meet with Judge Glenn Iwasaki in his chambers at 3 p.m. today, just four hours before Republicans will gather in caucus meetings to select delegates.
If the judge rules in his favor, 60 precincts will get to vote for one more county and state delegate, Ridgway said.Judge Tyrone Medley declined to hear the case on Friday.
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