Balloons descend on delegates following Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney's speech to delegates during the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., on Thursday, Aug. 30, 2012. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)

SOURCES: A Secret Ballot Would Guarantee A Trump Loss at the Convention

I’ve spoken to several delegates on the Rules Committee and they all tell me the same thing. Based on their own conversations with each other, if it were a secret ballot Trump would absolutely not be the GOP nominee. In fact, I can report that several of the delegates tell me that there are now private assurances from 27 members of the Rules Committee that they will publicly support a measure to allow the delegates to vote their conscience. They need one more for a minority report to make it to the floor.

But, the Trump campaign and the RNC are not taking this lightly. Several delegates tell me they are not just getting pressure from the Trump campaign directly, but from the RNC as well. One says he feels bullied by the RNC. One delegate I talked to said she was directly told if she did not support Trump that she would be blackballed from future leadership in the party. The pressure is intense.

There seems to be a real consensus that the delegates understand Trump is going to lose in November, but the only real leadership right now is to pressure the delegates into jumping off the cliff with Trump. An Alabama delegate I talked to said he felt like someone does need to step forward and suggest an alternate ticket. Doing that would solidify opposition to Trump even under such intense pressure.

Unfortunately, no one seems to be forthcoming with such leadership. Again though, the delegates on the Rules Committee opposed to Trump appear to be blowing off the threats and bullying from both Trump and the RNC. They recognize the disaster that would be Trump’s nomination.

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Erick Erickson

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