Here's what would have to happen to replace Trump on GOP ticket

Preibus voices concern about Trump's campaign direction
Preibus voices concern about Trump's campaign direction


    Preibus voices concern about Trump's campaign direction


Preibus voices concern about Trump's campaign direction 02:28

Story highlights

  • Trump has secured the Republican nomination
  • But some Republicans are looking for ways to remove him

Washington (CNN)Donald Trump's continued stumbles led The Wall Street Journal Monday to suggest that if he couldn't shape up by Labor Day, it might be time to "turn the nomination over to Mike Pence."

Replacing candidates on the ticket is fairly unprecedented, though Democrats replaced then-Sen. Thomas Eagleton on the 1972 ticket, following the revelation he used electroshock therapy.
    Any effort to remove Trump as the Republican presidential nominee would be far-fetched. But here are the two ways that Trump could be replaced at the top of the ticket.

    Trump removes himself

    If Trump wanted out, he would have to alert the Republican National Committee, which would then have to convene and decide who to replace him with. The 168 members of the RNC would then vote to approve a new nominee.
    But that's only the start. The new nominee would have to be certified for the ballot in each state, and each state has separate deadlines, most of which are before or around Labor Day.

    GOP removes Trump

    A small group of anti-Trump Republicans are mounting a long-shot bid to remove Trump, arguing that the party rules allow the RNC to take him from the ballot.
    "We are supporting any and all efforts to look at the options of ensuring that a nominee is there who can beat Hillary Clinton in November," said Dane Waters, a veteran GOP operative who is supporting this most recent effort to oust Trump.
    Free the Delegates, which Waters is a part of, failed in its bid to block Trump in Cleveland. It has also launched the GOP Accountability Project and a "Recall Trump" effort -- all focused on this long-shot effort.
    Under their proposal, anti-Trump Republicans would use the party's "Rule 8" and "Rule 9" to call a special meeting of the RNC and then vote to fill the vacancy at the top of the ticket.
    Rule 8 allows for a minimum of 16 RNC members from 16 separate states to petition for a special meeting of the RNC. And Rule 9 allows for the party fill a vacancy at the top of the ticket.
    But there's no rule that says the party can simply take its nomination away from Trump.


    He's not the only option -- it could be anyone -- but that's who the Journal suggested. He's received plum marks from conservatives and party officials. But as a reminder, this is never going to happen.