By MAX FILBY
CLEVELAND — Delegate Heather Pendleton said she heard “talk” Monday morning that turned into chaos on the floor of the Republican National Convention hours later.
“You just sit there in suspense, on the edge, waiting for that to happen,” said Pendleton, a Findlay Republican serving as an alternate delegate for the convention.
There is just one political party picking its presidential nominee this week, but it sounded like two were when some delegates revolted in a last-ditch effort to try to deny Donald Trump the Republican nomination on Monday.
Some delegates attempted to force a state-by-state vote to change the convention rules and allow delegates to vote for any presidential candidate, even if Trump won the primary in their state.
When the question of whether to approve the rules change came to a voice vote on the convention floor in Quicken Loans Arena, some delegates started yelling “Count our vote!” while others shouted “We want Trump!”
Eventually, delegates on each side settled for chanting “USA.”
There was so much shouting that the fate of the rules change was not determined until several minutes later, when a second voice vote had to be cast.
Alternate delegates from Texas “were yelling, people on the floor were yelling, and I was just taking pictures,” Pendleton joked.
Pendleton first heard about a proposed state-by-state vote to change the rules during an Ohio Republican Party breakfast Monday morning.
Chatter about the rules change died down during midday, but then revived at the convention later Monday, Pendleton said.
When she got to the convention and saw the rules committee report and the vote on the agenda, she thought, “This could get interesting.”
“It’s a different level of excitement,” Pendleton said.
Pendleton, who helped chair one of Gov. John Kasich’s campaigns for the governorship, also supported his presidential bid. Despite backing Kasich in the primary elections, Pendleton said she was indifferent toward the Republican revolt on the floor Monday.
“I love the gov … however, the American voters, at large, have spoken,” Pendleton said. Trump and Kasich are “both Republicans and I think either one is going to serve us better than Hillary Clinton.”
After Monday’s uprising, Pendleton said she wouldn’t be surprised if some delegates try to cause an uproar during today’s vote to nominate Trump and his vice presidential pick, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence.
Pendleton said she still thinks the party will come together during the convention and for the general election in November.
“My hope is we’ll settle our party differences (today) on the floor, and then Wednesday and Thursday we will work on rebuilding our support for our presidential and vice presidential candidate and get behind them 100 percent,” Pendleton said.