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RNC Chair: Former GOP Candidates Could Be Penalized For Not Endorsing Trump

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus said Sunday they will "look at" possibly penalizing former primary challengers for not backing nominee Donald Trump.

Speaking to CBS' "Face the Nation," Priebus said the RNC will "evaluate" the nomination process if Trump's former primary opponents want to run again in 2020 or 2024.


"Those people need to get on board," Priebus said, referring to Ohio Gov. John Kasish, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz. "And if they're thinking they're going to run again someday, I think that we're going to evaluate … the nomination process and I don't think it's going to be that easy for them."

When asked if there would be penalties for those primary challengers who have not endorsed Trump, the RNC chairman said it's something they will "look at," but nothing has been decided.

Last summer, the Republican candidates signed a so-called "loyalty pledge" that they would back the eventual nominee, "regardless of who it is."

"People in our party are talking about what we're going to do about this. I mean, there's a ballot access issue in South Carolina. In order to be on the ballot in South Carolina, you actually have to pledge your support to the nominee, no matter who that person is," Priebus explained on "Face the Nation." "So what's the penalty for that? It's not a threat, but that's the just question that we have a process in place."

Priebus continued, "And if a private entity puts forward a process and has agreement with the participants in that process, and those participants don't follow through with the promises that they made in that process, what should a private party do about that if those same people come around in four or eight years?"

A new CBS News poll reveals Trump and Hillary Clinton are tied at 42 percent across battleground states.

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