There's been discussion, debate and disagreement about the state of the two delegates Jon Huntsman
won in New Hampshire. So DCW contacted the New Hampshire Secretary of State's office to get some answers:
What we already knew:
1) NH had 12 delegates
2) They were divided proportionally based on the statewide vote
3) Huntsman won 2 delegates
4) Each candidate had submitted an alphabetical list of 20 potential delegates
5) Huntsman ended or suspended (this has been one item debated) his campaign soon after the primary.
What we learned:
1) Each candidate to win delegates, including Huntsman, is being so notified. These letters are being mailed by the NH SoS today.
2) The candidates have 10 days to respond, and to designate which names off their submitted list will actually get to be delegates.
3) The list of delegates for each campaign will be posted by the NH SOS.
4) NH doesn't care that Huntsman is no longer running. He won 2 delegates, and he is entitled to pick two delegates off his list.
5) All delegates are legally bound by NH law to vote for their candidate - unless the candidate releases those delegates.
V. After determining the apportionment of delegates according to this section, the secretary of state shall send by mail notice to each candidate the number of delegates to which he is entitled pursuant to this section. The candidate shall within 10 days after notice is sent to him notify the secretary of state of which delegates and alternates on the list filed pursuant to RSA 655:50 that he chooses to be his delegation at the national convention. The secretary of state shall then notify by mail each delegate and alternate chosen by the candidate to support his candidacy at the national convention.
VI. If a presidential candidate has received a share of the delegates as a result of the presidential primary but withdraws as a presidential candidate at any time prior to the convention, his pledged delegates shall be released by the candidate and each delegate is free to support any candidate of his political party who may be his choice as a candidate for president.
What we can infer:.
1) Huntsman will pick 2 delegates who he knows will support Romney
2) Huntsman will notify the delegates he is releasing them from their pledge. This is independent of any federal campaign status, as the pledge is a state law,
3) The delegates then essentially becomde unpledged delegates (just like the superdelegates), and will/should announce their intention to vote for Romney.
Once that's done, all sources should then move the 2 delegates into Romney's count. But for now, we're keeping them in Huntman's column.