ST. PAUL -- The latest plan to end Reform Party infighting comes from Chairman Jack Gargan, who is calling an unusual emergency national convention March 18-19 in Chicago.
Gargan will lay it all on the line, from his chairmanship to whether the convention should be here or in Long Beach, Calif.
''This is for all the marbles,'' Gargan said Tuesday.
The Chicago meeting shouldn't be confused with a rival faction's decision to convene a meeting of the 150-member national committee Feb. 12 in Nashville, Tenn. If that event still occurs, it likely will include an attempt to oust Gargan.
Vice Chairman Gerry Moan of Tucson, Ariz., said it's possible the Nashville event could be canceled with a movement to remove Gargan coming in Chicago.
''He's out to destroy the party and he doesn't care how he does it,'' Moan said.
For his part, Gargan said anything done in Nashville could be superseded by the national convention.
''They're wasting their plane fare to go to Nashville,'' he said.
Supporters of Gov. Jesse Ventura and loyalists to party founder Ross Perot have been bickering for months over presidential politics, the site of the convention and Gargan himself.
On those counts, Ventura's faction favors New York tycoon Donald Trump, St. Paul and Gargan. The Perot loyalists prefer Pat Buchanan, Long Beach, and they're cool to Gargan.
Gargan acknowledges his precarious position, but says Perot loyalists may face removal from leadership posts in Chicago, too.
''I expect a movement that would oust the insurgents,'' Gargan said. ''But my head is on the line here, too. It's all for broke now.''
Moan said he doesn't believe the Chicago event will get a quorum required to conduct business.
The convention will include a national committee meeting at 1 p.m. on March 18, followed by the convention beginning at 3 p.m.
A detailed agenda and exact location of the event in Chicago were pending.
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