Call the aunt and tell her she can't come. What a headache!
Put your foot down. I'd say you don't need bouncers at your wedding, so don't let her come if she's going to bring people.
if this woman had never been married nor ever been involved with the planning of a wedding, I can sort of, *maybe* see her being clueless about the rsvp card if she delivered the message via phone. if she was an otherwise nice, norma, and accomodating relative, I might just write her a card myself and be done with it. however, this whole "she is also insistent on bringing others with her" thing indicates a level of social misconduct that is completely ridiculous and shouldn't have to be dealt with. lay down the law. politely, of course. :)
That aunt--wow. I can't imaginae being so bullheaded over the concept of "just put it in the mailbox already." Sounds to me like she is planning to bring more people than just herself, and by not commmitting to a number on the card, maybe feels she's leaving herself leeway to bring a bunch.
On the other hand, this--"Those who did send in their cards will be given precedence. She knew this as it was printed on the invite."--really jumps out at me. If the couple invited 125 or fewer, why the need to give anyone "precedence," and for what? Is it possible they invited more than the room holds?
Pretty simple if you ask me. The aunt isn't going to listen, right? So don't let her come. Sounds like she'd bring a group of people no matter what, so tell her she can't come. Better yet, tell her the wedding is in a different town.
By all means, tell her she can't come. She doesn;t want to commit to a certain number of guests by sending in the card. Even if it is just a matter of form, to refuse to send the card in shows a lack of respect for the whole event. Sometimes form IS meaning.
This aunt seems like a pain, but you did invite her knowing that she has a habit of bringing other people to weddings, so you can't say you didn't know. I believe it would be in really bad taste to retract the invitation before she's done anything worse than not return the RSVP card. I say, call her up and tell her that you will turn in a card for her so she doesn't need to return her card. Also tell her that she cannot under any circumstances bring additional people with her to the wedding, and if she intends to, please do not come.
If she says she's going to come alone, it's likely that you won't believe her. Don't be the one worrying about that on your wedding day. Ask the most assertive person in your family (someone that's related to her, too) to handle it if she comes with additional guests.
If she says she is going to come with additional guests and you can't stop her, inform her that the attendance is limited by a fire code. I might also nicely beg that she not interfere with my wedding in a disruptive way. Then ask that assertive family member to talk to her when she shows up.
did this person do a b-list? is that why there is a first come first served thing on the invite?
This is why b-lists are a BAD idea.
I agree with P...that's the best way to go. Very assertive, tactful and fair.