The head of the National Republican Senatorial Committee is warning Republican Senators who are in close reelection races this year to stay away from the party’s national convention in Cleveland this summer.
Mississippi Sen. Roger Wicker says a floor fight between Donald Trump and Ted Cruz supporters for the presidential nomination could cast vulnerable Republican Senators in a bad light.
Already GOP Sens. Mark Kirk, Kelly Ayotte and John McCain say they’re planning to skip the convention.
“If there’s going to be a brouhaha, I’m advising candidates to be present for more unifying events,” Wicker told The Hill.
The caution shown by all of the GOP candidates underlines the unusual nature of this year’s Republican convention.
Republicans haven’t held a contested convention since 1976, when President Gerald Ford battled Ronald Reagan for the nomination. Since then, the convention has generally been a piece of theater designed to bolster the party’s nominee.
This year, there are worries of riots or violence if Trump supporters believe the nomination is being unfairly wrested from their favored candidate.