Friday, March 07, 2008

The Democrats' Florida and Michigan question

Democratic Party National Chairman Howard Dean is encouraging officials in Florida and Michigan to consider "do-over" contests for the purposes of delegate selection to the National Convention in Denver, and in what appears to be an about-face, Hillary Clinton's campaign seems prepared to concede that this is a good idea:

"All they have to do is come before us with rules that fit into what they agreed to a year and a half ago, and then they'll be seated," Dean said during a round of interviews Thursday on network and cable TV news programs.

The two state parties will have to find the funds to pay for new contests without help from the national party, Dean said.

The Michigan governor, top officials in Hillary Rodham Clinton's campaign, and Florida's state party chair all are now saying they would consider holding a sort of do-over contest by June. That's a change from the previous insistence from officials in both states that the primaries they held in January should determine how their delegates are allocated.

If there are new contests in Florida and Michigan, it seems that the growing consensus is that they will be caucuses since a caucus is much cheaper to run than a primary from the State's perspective. Both States say they aren't sure they have the funds (between 10 and 25 million dollars for each State, respectively), and the Democratic National Committee says they don't have the funds to pay for a re-vote and help fund their Presidential campaign as well.

Both Clinton and Obama have said they'll abide by whatever solution the DNC comes up with.

But CNN analyst John Dickerson said in the tight nominating race, half the party may be outraged with whatever the outcome.

This could be good news if you are a Republican. It may indeed be too late for new primaries in Michigan and Florida, so if there is another contest in those States it may have to be a caucus. Caucuses have favored Barack Obama throughout the Democratic nominating race (even when he lost one in Nevada), and we know that it is for this reason that Hillary and her supporters do not favor them. If there are caucuses in Florida and Michigan to determine delegate allocation and Obama wins them, expect Clinton supporters to cry foul. If delegates are seated under the present operating scenario in spite of candidates agreeing not to campaign in these two States (and all candidates not appearing on the ballot in one), Democratic Party hacks may join Obama supporters in their opposition. If no delegates are seated at all from either State, the voters of those States will likely feel disenfranchised-a winning argument for Republicans there, who did not disenfranchise their voters in either State (delegates were parsed in half to account for the rules violation of voting too soon).

Get ready for the Democrats' train wreck in Denver.

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At Sunday, March 09, 2008 3:16:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

There should be NO do-over. Michigan and Florida broke the rules. They blew. Moreover, no one was considering a "do-over" or any other so called "remedy" while Clinton was in the lead.

At Sunday, March 09, 2008 5:03:00 PM, Blogger doc said...

The national Democratic Party stripped Florida and Michigan of their delegates to the national convention after the states moved up the dates of their primary elections.

That means votes that were cast in primaries in those states will not translate into delegates awarded to one candidate or the other in the contest for the Democratic nomination for president.

.If you don't count Florida and Michigan, That will be saying America doesn't care about our Millitary Men, and Women fighting in Iraq, and saying to them we are sorry your vote don't count, because the rules are the rules. Is that what Sen. Obama wants?

At Sunday, March 09, 2008 7:18:00 PM, Blogger jwmclean said...

Here's a thought. I keep hearing about record breaking fund-raising. Why can't the candidates foot the bill. These are Clinton favored states. Let Obama prove that he's in the right man for the job by letting all the votes count from everyone.

At Sunday, March 09, 2008 8:29:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Obama cannot support their votes counting as it will help keep him from the presidency. These people are not interested in everyone speaking only those who will help them win. I say count em and send hussein home

At Monday, March 10, 2008 10:21:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think we already voted for who we wanted in Florida. Why should we have to succumb to the belligerency of a caucus where Obamas hired guns take over the process like they did in Texas? Why doesn't anyone talk about how Obama's people hire voters to go into these caucuses and intimidate people? His people hold bbqs to teach them what to do. Look at his record in IL and see where he's taken credit for bills presented by other lawmakers. Hello there is something wrong here!!


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