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Dumping anti-Trump Arizona delegate may have broken GOP rules

Lori Hack tries to pick up her delegate credential for the Republican National Convention on Monday, July 18, 2016, in Cleveland. Hack, an Arizona delegate, was replaced by state party chairman Robert Graham because she's refusing to vote for Trump on the first ballot. The Republican National Convention starts today. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

CLEVELAND — An Arizona delegate who was planning to abstain from voting for presumptive nominee Donald Trump may have been removed from the Republican National Convention against party rules, a letter released to a website shows.

Delegate Lori Hack was told she had been dismissed from the convention after news broke last week that she planned to vote against Trump. Though she later clarified she planned to abstain from voting — at least on the first ballot — she arrived in Cleveland on Monday and was told her credentials had been revoked.

According to Arizona Politics, Hack then took her case to Baker & Hostetler, a Cleveland-based law firm.

In a letter to Hack — that she shared with the website — the law firm states that Hack may have been removed from the Arizona delegation in violation of GOP rules by Arizona Republican Party Chairman Robert Graham, who had said Hack was wasting her time by making the trip.

Graham had told Hack that, by refusing to vote for Trump, she was essentially resigning from the delegation. As the winner of the Arizona presidential preference election, Trump was awarded the votes of all 58 delegates by state law, at least on the first round of voting.

In the letter, the law firm states that to remove Hack from the delegation, Graham would have had to file a contest through the party’s committee on contests. No such contest was made.

Instead, state party officials contacted the national body and attempted to file a complaint with the committee of credentials. However, because no claim was filed with the former committee, the latter could do nothing.

The law firm then goes on to say that Hack may have been removed because of the unilateral action of Graham, which would be a violation of party rules.

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