Earlier this week, the New Hampshire Secretary of State released a list of delegates the Trump campaign selected to support Donald Trump at the Republican National Convention. Among the alternate delegates is Gerald DeLemus of Rochester, New Hampshire. DeLemus is currently under indictment on nine federal charges for his role in the 2014 armed resistance at Cliven Bundy’s ranch in Nevada.
As the Union Leader has reported, among the charges against DeLemus: conspiracy to commit an offense against the United States, threatening a federal law enforcement officer, assault on a federal officer, obstruction of justice, attempting to impede or injure a federal law enforcement officer, interference with interstate commerce by extortion, and several firearms charges.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Mark Zuckerman has asked that DeLemus remain in jail while awaiting trial because of a “desire and willingness” to kill police officers.
But DeLemus also has many defenders, who say he is a “peacemaker.” The Associated Press reported on his appearance in court:
Public defender Jonathan Saxe argued that DeLemus had nothing to do with the April confrontation and didn’t know it had happened until he arrived later that night. He questioned why authorities have let DeLemus remain free for two years if they consider him dangerous. The courtroom and an overflow room were packed with DeLemus’s supporters, including a neighbor and three lawmakers who testified on his behalf. DeLemus’ wife, Susan, is a state representative.
Rep. John Burt, a Republican from Goffstown, called DeLemus “one of the most law-abiding Americans I’ve ever met.” And his neighbor, a Democrat, said he personifies the notion of “random acts of kindness.”
It is unclear when the judge will rule on DeLemus’ release pending trial. It is possible DeLemus will be unable to attend the convention in Cleveland, Ohio this July.
Earlier this year, DeLemus traveled to Oregon in support of an armed standoff spearheaded by Bundy’s sons. DeLemus, a co-chairman for Veterans for Donald Trump in New Hampshire, had hoped Trump would back the Oregon standoff, which led to the death of one protestor, but Trump has stated to the media: “You cannot let people take over federal property.”
The Trump campaign did not respond to a request for comment. The list of delegates was turned over to the secretary of state on February 26, less than a week before DeLemus was arrested.
As has already been reported, Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski will serve as one of the primary delegates from New Hampshire.
Alternate delegates rarely have any impact at the Republican National Convention. They are required to sit separately from primary delegates. The process for replacing delegates can be determined first by the Republican National Committee, and absent RNC rules, the state parties would have the authority to make decisions. Rules remain in flux, so the impact of having an alternate delegate under indictment is largely unknown.