Donald Trump is signalling that he’s not taking any delegates for granted as he tries to gather the 1,237 required to clinch his party’s presidential nomination.
The billionaire Republican front-runner’s campaign saidit was planning to file a formal complaint with the Republican National Committee contesting how Louisiana will allocate its delegates. In a further sign of the possible battles yet to be fought over delegates, Trump hired veteran strategist Paul Manafort, who helped manage the convention fight for President Gerald Ford during the contested 1976 Republican convention, the New York Times reported.
Barry Bennett, a Trump campaign adviser on delegate strategy, confirmed to Bloomberg Politics that Trump’s legal team would soon file its formal complaint over 10 Louisiana delegates. Trump won the March 5 primary in Louisiana with more than 41 percent of the vote, but state rules could end up giving rival Senator Ted Cruz of Texas more delegates.
“We’re going to be very aggressive protecting the integrity of the vote,” Bennett said. “We are not going to tolerate shenanigans and we’ll fight them with every tool we can come up with.”
Trump and Cruz are locked in a delegate battle that will likely last all the way to the Republican National Convention, with Cruz trailing the front-runner by 274 delegates. Monday’s formal complaint comes as Cruz stands to gain an additional 10 Louisiana delegates despite the fact that Trump bested him there by a margin of 3 percentage points in the state’s March 5 primary.
Both Cruz and Trump came away with 18 pledged delegates from the contes