LULAC v. TEXAS DEMOCRATIC PARTY

So I totally agree with LULAC on this one. By the way if you dont know what LULAC stands for...

League of United Latin American Citizens

it all stems from the March 4 Texas Primary.

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All right so because the delegate allotment in Texas discriminates against heavily populated Hispanic districts, LULAC and Mexican American Bar Association of Houston are suing the Texas Democratic Party.

They claim:

the TDP failed to seek clearance required by the U.S. Justice Department for the so-called "Texas Two Step." The groups also argue the system effectively discriminates against Latino voters by giving them fewer delegates.

ALSO

Hispanic districts, where turnout was low in 2004 and 2006, got fewer delegates than others, particularly urban, predominantly black districts.

They are not seeking that the delegates already elected in the presidential primary be removed from the convention. They contend it has nothing to do with Hilary and Barack, but all they want is for

the delegates reallocated to give Latino-majority areas a stronger voice,

a resolution to change the presidential election system ie. the two step will be made at the State Convention on June 6-7 in Austin.

take a look at the delegate distribution in Texas:

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Obviously Hispanics represent a bigger majority of the population in Texas but it does not correspond to the power they have in the election process. I applaud LULAC and hope that Hispanics will have a bigger voice in determining elected officials.

http://www.elpasotimes.com/ci_9208303?so urce=most_viewed

Tags: 2008, Democratic Party, LULAC (all tags)

Comments

22 Comments

Re: LULAC v. TEXAS DEMOCRATIC PARTY

Houston has more delegates than ALL of South Texas!! no fair.

by amde 2008-05-09 10:55PM | 0 recs
Re: LULAC v. TEXAS DEMOCRATIC PARTY

I imagine Houston has a greater population than all of South Texas.

by The Distillery 2008-05-09 11:25PM | 0 recs
Re: LULAC v. TEXAS DEMOCRATIC PARTY

And almost certainly a bigger number of Democrats.

I think LULAC is onto something here.  They should also sue the states of New York and California because they have more delegates per person than Texas does.

by Mostly 2008-05-10 03:51AM | 0 recs
Re: LULAC v. TEXAS DEMOCRATIC PARTY

Probably a big waste of money. Party nominating contests have zero protection under federal law. The party could pick a nominee based on the number of each candidate's nose hairs if they wanted and it's perfectly legal.

by Obama Independent 2008-05-09 10:59PM | 0 recs
Re: LULAC v. TEXAS DEMOCRATIC PARTY

This is good to see.

"State Democratic Party spokesman Hector Nieto the primary election system was not submitted to the DOJ for clearance but that the party was only required to get approval from its state convention attendees and the Democratic National Committee."

Why is the DNC even involved in this matter?  We elected Dean to decentralize the power of the DNC, not increase it's bureaucracy.

by Jerome Armstrong 2008-05-09 11:00PM | 0 recs
Really? You can't think of one reason that...

the DNC would be involved.  Perhaps b/c its a presidential nominating process.  The only national election.  Every state has to submit their nominating plan to the DNC to be approved.  This is a national election.

by nklein 2008-05-10 01:50AM | 0 recs
But...

Given the huge turn out this time around, won't they get proportional representation next time around? Basically, getting rewarded for getting out the vote? Which seems to be the point of this system.

by lizardbox 2008-05-09 11:11PM | 0 recs
Re: But...

Some suggest that minorities generally have lower turnout, even if they did make more of an effort, I would like to see the Dem. delegate allotment determined by Dem. Party loyalty, which reward loyal constituents (Hispanic districts like mine have gone dem no matter what even with Kerry but we only have 3 delegates so woop dee do) like hispanics and AAs.

Hisapnics are practically the majority in Texas but they are still treated as a minority with respect to delegates and representation. Its wrong.

by amde 2008-05-09 11:18PM | 0 recs
Re: But...

Well, I don't really like the system by which delegates are allocated. And it is unfortunate that Hispanics in Texas weren't properly represented, but I honestly don't think a lawsuit is the way to go. The Dem representatives from that state have a lot of work to do, and I'm sure they can garner enough support for their cause given the way this race turned out

by lizardbox 2008-05-09 11:24PM | 0 recs
Re: But...

Please see my comment below explaining the delegation process.  The diarist doesn't really understand how it works in Texas.

And Latinos actually receive their own Add-on at the State Convention.  Blacks do not.  It is customary for the Latino caucus to nominate a person for Vice Chair and that person is generally voted to be an add-on.  It's not an official rule, but it's the custom in Texas that gives Latinos special representation.

by The Distillery 2008-05-09 11:28PM | 0 recs
Re: But...

Please see my comment below.  You are mistaken.  The delegate process in Texas IS by Democratic loyalty.

by The Distillery 2008-05-09 11:29PM | 0 recs
Re: But...

"I would like to see the Dem. delegate allotment determined by Dem. Party loyalty."

It is.  That's the complete and total reason that Houston is weighted so heavily.

If LULAC is successful, Democratic Party loyalty will no longer be rewarded.

by Mostly 2008-05-10 03:54AM | 0 recs
Re: But...

No, it is based on the race for Governor.  The next governor election is 2010.  If they want greater representation at the Texas Democratic Party, then they need to turn out their districts for the Democratic candidate in that election.  Then in 2012, they will have more delegates.

by The Distillery 2008-05-09 11:24PM | 0 recs
Caucus delegates are determined by

how many people voted for the Democratic nominee for Governor, Chris Bell, in 2004.  Delegates are determined at the precinct level.  There are approximately 87,000 precinct level delegates.  For every 180 votes for Chris Bell, your precinct gets 1 delegate.  And the process works its way up from there.  Those delegates attend the state and county conventions where they caucus again.  For every 12 precinct delegates, you get 1 Senate District delegate who attends the State convention.  

I know all this because I am the SD delegate for my precinct.  I don't know yet what the vote threshold is for determining how many state delegates each SD gets to send to nationals is, but I imagine it's based on vote thresholds for Chris Bell as well.

It's not that Blacks have more representation because they're black or because they live in the city.  They have more representation because they have voted in the past for Democrats.  The process favors areas that are more consistently Democratic.  If it didn't, Democrats in more Republican communities would have greater representation than Democrats in heavily Democratic areas.  The idea of the process is to put Democrats on an equal playing field.

by The Distillery 2008-05-09 11:21PM | 0 recs
Re: Caucus delegates are determined by

Sorry, the race in 2006.

by The Distillery 2008-05-09 11:32PM | 0 recs
Re: Caucus delegates are determined by

South Texas has gone consistently for Democrats, especially EL PASO county. We are one of the few counties in TX that went dem in 2004.

How about El Paso?

The city had a population of 609,415.[3] It is the sixth-largest city in Texas and the 21st-largest city in the United States, as well as the 7th fastest growing large city in the nation from 2000-2006.

how is it possible we only have 3 delegates? its not equal representation. We hold no power in the election process.

by amde 2008-05-09 11:37PM | 0 recs
Re: Caucus delegates are determined by

Look it up on your county Democratic website.  In Tarrant county, we can access the election results from this year's election and the 2006 gubernatorial race.  Contact your county chair to see if your precincts were robbed of delegates.  I doubt it.  If they were, there would have been a brouhaha about it long before these elections.

by The Distillery 2008-05-09 11:42PM | 0 recs
Re: Caucus delegates are determined by

yeah we went dem for Bell. Well there was no stealing just the fact that our county is under-represented in the TX demo party. I would like to see that change for the better because our current delegate allotment means that each delegate to the state convention represents 203,138 El Pasoans (thats just city, I didnt add county pop.)

lookie lookie

El Paso County was one of the very few counties in Texas to vote for the Democratic candidate for President of the United States. Voters in the county chose Senator John Kerry over George W. Bush, 94,879 to 73,046.

the election itself recieved low turnout due to no  direct appeal to the constituents.

Lets hope this lawsuit brings attention and change to our failed system.

by amde 2008-05-10 12:01AM | 0 recs
Re: Caucus delegates are determined by

While it's great you guys went for Kerry, It doesn't matter what the margin was for Kerry.  It's in the TDP rules that it's the number of people voting in the gubernatorial race.  So you're in El Paso county?  I'm assuming SD 29 where you get 3?  And keep in mind this is the number of state delegates your SD sends to the NATIONAL Convention, not the state convention.  I believe El Paso has about 130 or so SD delegates going to state, which is pretty on par with all the other more heavily populated districts.  But here's the listing of how many each district sends to nationals:

SENATORIAL DISTRICT DELEGATES AND ALTERNATES
DISTRICT DELEGATES ALTERNATES
1 4 1
2 4 1
3 4 1
4 4 1
5 4 1
6 3 0
7 3 0
8 4 1
9 3 0
10 5 1
11 4 1
12 4 1
13 7 1
14 8 1
15 4 1
16 4 1
17 5 1
18 4 1
19 4 1
20 4 1
21 4 1
22 3 0
23 6 1
24 3 0
25 6 1
26 4 1
27 3 0
28 3 0
29 3 0
30 3 0
31 2 0
TOTALS: 126 21

The majority of the districts are around 3 and 4.  23 that has 6 is in Dallas county.  SD 25 has 6 and is San Antonio.  SD 14 has 8 and is Austin.  While Austin is not the largest city, it's about 80% Democratic, so that is why they have more representation.

Yes, it sucks that they didn't turn out to vote in 2006, but I'm not really seeing your argument as to why they should have equal representation as Democrats who did turn for the gubernatorial election.  This is not the general election.  This is the party election.  Why would we count general population numbers as representative of the number of Democrats in that area?

by The Distillery 2008-05-10 01:02AM | 0 recs
If it Worked This WAy Federally

That is if states that voted Democratic got a disproportionate number of delegates and states that never vote Democratic in federal elections got very few delegates just who would be the presumptive nominee?

by hypopg 2008-05-10 03:40AM | 0 recs
Re: If it Worked This WAy Federally

It does work that way federally.

For example, New York has far more delegates than Texas does, even though Texas has more people.

So, who the nominee would be is who the nominee is.

by Mostly 2008-05-10 03:58AM | 0 recs
Re: LULAC v. TEXAS DEMOCRATIC PARTY

With all due respect, I don't think the diarist understands how delegates are rewarded.  Both state and district delegates are awarded on the basis of Democratic voting in previous elections.  This is true in Texas, New York, California, as well as between the states themselves.

The diarist believes this to be a good thing, and says, basically, that "instead of the current system, delegates should be awarded by party loyalty."

But they are.  That is what LULAC is complaining about - if they have their way, that will no longer be true.  (They won't - party rules aren't subject to DOJ election guidelines, or any other laws.)

by Mostly 2008-05-10 04:02AM | 0 recs

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