Vote Counting the DNC Rules & Bylaws Committee

On May 31st, the DNC Rules & Bylaws Committee (RBC) will meet to possibly correct its error in stripping two of the largest states in the union, Florida & Michigan, of their voting rights at the Democratic National Convention.

As we move closer to that "red-letter date", more and more people -- from the media to regular citizens -- will be looking for any kind of sign as an indicator of where the members of the RBC may be leaning in regards to restoring the voting rights of the Sunshine State and the Wolverine State.

At this moment, twenty-one RBC members have endorsed either Clinton or Obama and nine members are still "official undeclared/undecided." Below is a chart of who's supporting whom:

Hillary Clinton (13)Barack Obama (8)Undeclared/Undecided (9)
Harold Ickes (Washington, D.C.)Allan Katz (Florida)Alexis Herman (Washington, D.C.)
Donald Fowler (South Carolina)Carol Khare Fowler (South Carolina)James Roosevelt, Jr. (Massachusetts)
Elizabeth Smith (Washington, D.C.)Janice Griffin (Virginia)Donna Brazille (Washington, D.C.)
Hartina Flournoy (Washington, D.C.)Thomas Hynes (Illinois)Mark Brewer (Michigan)
Alice Huffman (California)Sharon Stroschein (South Dakota)Ralph Dawson (New York)
Ben Johnson (Washington, D.C.)Everett Ward (North Carolina)Alice Germond (Washington, D.C.)
Elaine Kamarck (Massachusetts)Sarah Swisher (Iowa)David McDonald (state of Washington)
Eric Kleinfeld (Washington, D.C.)Martha Fuller Clark (New Hampshire)Jerome Wiley Segovia (Virginia)
Mona Pasquil (California)Yvonne Gates (Nevada)
Mame Reiley (Virginia)
Garry Shay (California)
Michael Steed (Washington, D.C.)
Jaime Gonzalez, Jr. (Texas)

I think it's important to note, however, that while twenty-one RBC members have pledged to vote for Clinton or Obama at the Democratic Convention, those pledges may not necessarily translate into votes in favor of their preferred candidate's position on the question of Florida & Michigan.

The DNC Rules & Bylaws Committee (RBC) is probably the most powerful and the most influential committee within the DNC.  Membership on the committee isn't just handed out to anyone.  Those on the RBC are the DNC members who will put the Democratic Party above all else.  So, in essence, arguments could be made either way that restoring the voting rights of Florida & Michigan or not restoring those states' voting rights helps or hinders the Democratic Party.

The only sure thing about the May 31st RBC meeting is that it'll be most interesting.

Tags: Barack Obama, DNC Rules & Bylaws Committee, Florida, Hillary Clinton, Michigan (all tags)



Tips & Recs for Diaries at 5:07 AM

by Andre Walker 2008-05-03 01:07AM | 0 recs
Re: Tips & Recs for Diaries at 5:07 AM

What happens if RBC votes to count Michigan and Florida?

by Sandeep 2008-05-03 01:19AM | 0 recs
What Happens Is This...

...The slates of delegates from those two states automatically enter the delegate count and drives up the number of votes needed to nominate at the Democratic Convention.

As always, the actions of the RBC can be appealed to the Committee on Credentials for the 2008 Democratic National Convention, but it would look pretty rough if an Obama supporter or the Obama campaign itself took the position of "The RBC acted unfairly by restoring the voting rights of those two states, so we're seeking to have their ruling overturned."

The gist of it is this:

If the RBC votes to restore the rights of Florida and Michigan, then their decision could be appealed but it would be unlikely (who wants to go on record as opposing a move that would count votes).

However, if the RBC sustains its original decision, then it gets appealed and goes to the Convention in August.

by Andre Walker 2008-05-03 01:32AM | 0 recs
Re: What Happens Is This...

I believe if Obama's members object and have more than 20% of the vote that it goes to the general session.

Thats where this ends the general session and Obama delegates can vote to fully count Florida and Michigan and cause him to lose WITHOUT changing their support for him.

I am assuming Hillary will have at least a 50 SD lead + 55 or more delegates gained by Florida and Michigan + 50 or so pledged delegates from here to end or Edwards delegates etc.

She can win it all with a relatively mild SD lead IF Obama has still lost his demographics at that point.

by DTaylor 2008-05-03 02:14AM | 0 recs
It Depends

If it passes by a slim majority with declared Clinton backers switching their votes from a previous "no" vote (if they voted for stripping Michigan and Florida previously), then people being for punishing the two states before being against it might be the big media story that comes out of the vote.

You could, for example, have 13 public Clinton endorsers, Katz and Brewer voting for their states, and one other voting as a majority.  Accurate or not, the comparisons will be to things like the 2000 Supreme Court decision on the presidential election and Henry Clay's "corrupt bargain."

by Anthony de Jesus 2008-05-03 01:37AM | 0 recs
Re: It Depends

Suppressing votes is a lot more scandalous than counting all of the votes.

It looks bad for Obama to win based on successfully silencing two large states.  The perspective would be that:

"Hillary won the national primary election, but Barack Obama's friends didn't want to count two big states he lost so they disqualified millions of votes on a technicality."

by BPK80 2008-05-03 02:10AM | 0 recs
Re: It Depends

Katz and Brewer cannot vote on proposals regarding their own states.  If the proposals are separate, then they can trade votes possibly, but they have to officially recuse themselves from voting on something originating out of their state.

by The Distillery 2008-05-03 02:11AM | 0 recs
Re: It Depends


by BPK80 2008-05-03 04:20AM | 0 recs
Re: It Depends

Oh, I'm sorry.  I thought you knew the Regulations of the Rules and Bylaws Committee.  You can educate yourself here: 6db9de2c969d3fd055_2bm6ib44l.pdf

"Section 3.4.P: Voting: A member of the RBC shall not vote on a challenge arising in his or her own state.  All matters shall be determined by a majority vote of those voting in person or by proxy.  A quorum shall consist of forty percent (40%) of the total number of committee votes entitled to be counted in the matter."

by The Distillery 2008-05-03 10:27AM | 0 recs
Re: It Depends


by BPK80 2008-05-03 01:15PM | 0 recs
40% of 30=12; Hillary voters could quorum!

by itsadryheat 2008-05-03 04:59PM | 0 recs
Re: It Depends

The rules say that a committee person is disqualified from voting on the issue of his home state.

by rrs11215 2008-05-03 08:33AM | 0 recs
Re: Tips & Recs for Diaries at 5:07 AM

Tipped for posting a NON-PARTISAN diary on MI and FL!  Who knew it was possible?

by The Distillery 2008-05-03 02:22AM | 0 recs
Committee Make-Up

How many of them were on the Rules and Bylaws Committee when it voted to strip Michigan and Florida of delegates?  Has the membership changed at all?  (The only dissenting vote last time around was Allan Katz of Florida, who is in the Obama column.) I tend to think that Alexis Herman and James Roosevelt Jr. are not inclined to reverse their votes, especially Roosevelt, who called himself a "rules geek" and signaled that his emphasis is on following the letter of the law.  I tend to think that Howard Dean made them co-chairs of the Credentials Committee at the national convention because they were inclined toward deciding things for legalistic rather than political reasons.  

by Anthony de Jesus 2008-05-03 01:21AM | 0 recs
The membership has not changed...

...However, the political landscape has changed.

I'm inclined to believe that the decision to strip the voting rights of Florida & Michigan was done when most everyone thought this nomination contest would end on February 5th and the presumptive nominee could go on record as vowing to seat those two states at the Convention when it didn't matter.

However, now that this contest has extended into May (and even June) and now that it's quite probable that Florida & Michigan could make or break the legitimacy of the potential Democratic nominee, something has to be done to bring those two states back into the fold.

My solution is to revert back to the original penalty that reduced the states' pledged delegate votes by half and removed the votes of the unpledged delegates entirely.

by Andre Walker 2008-05-03 01:37AM | 0 recs
Re: The membership has not changed...

I think there's no doubt that everyone on the committee believed this would not affect the actual nominee.  What I'm less sure about is the best way to move forward.  While I think it's unfair to change the rules mid-game, the only way we're going to get out of this is a compromise.  While I thought it was stupid when I first heard it, I've come to agree with the Michigan plan, where half the delegates are 50/50 and the other half are from the primaries.  I hope they do that in Florida too.  This way, neither candidate is happy, but both candidates get what they asked for.  My decision really has nothing to do with what's right though in my mind, it's just what's best for the party.

by The Distillery 2008-05-03 02:19AM | 0 recs
Re: Committee Make-Up

Well Harold Ickes, for one, was on the original committee and voted to apply the rules that we now have.  He has flip-flopped on this because he wears two different hats, as he likes to say, as he is also co-chair of the Clinton campaign, and an advocate for changing th rules.  He will not be allowed to bring that hat with him on May 31st.

by haystax calhoun 2008-05-03 06:28AM | 0 recs
Bylaws Committee

Thanks Andre and Anthony. My biased mind is hoping for a 20-10 ruling to count Michigan and Florida:-).

by Sandeep 2008-05-03 01:45AM | 0 recs
So you want to destroy the party with a coup

So you want the DNC to change the rules at the endgame so the candidate who has lost can overturn the will of the people.. er in a new way. By handing Fl and MI to hillary when Obama wasnt on the ballot in one and didnt campaign in the other.

In otherwords you want to stage a coup.

That is the single quickest route to the destruction of the party i know. It is telling that you arent concerned about that but only about getting your way.

AntiDemocratic. Unamerican. And against everything the democratic party stands for.

by cdreid 2008-05-03 02:05AM | 0 recs
Re: So you want to destroy the party with a coup

Stand down, solider, stand down.

This is non-partisan diary.  Please don't bring the primary war in here.  While a rule-changing outcome potentially helps one candidate, the diarist was not expressing that a position either way.  It was simply education.

by The Distillery 2008-05-03 02:13AM | 0 recs
Re: So you want to destroy the party with a coup


No offense to you personally but you know that isnt true. This is about an attempt to overthrow the popular vote just as the attempt to get the supers to overthrow the will of the people was.

This diary is about overthrowing a democratic election.

by cdreid 2008-05-03 02:25AM | 0 recs
Re: So you want to destroy the party with a coup

No offense to you, because I've got your back every other time, but there wasn't talk about what should happen based on the candidates until you started in.  (I'm of course not counting the comment above your original one from sandman or something because that was just a waste of space anyway...)

But now that you started, you had to drag me into replying to their illogical replies as well.

Thanks!  :b

by The Distillery 2008-05-03 03:12AM | 0 recs
Popular vote?

By popular vote, do you mean the votes certified and counted by the Secretaries of State in all the states so certified?  Then you mean to count the popular votes certified by Florida and Michigan elections officials as legally cast.  Regardless of what any committee of the Democratic Party decides to do with delegates according to various versions of rules and committee expectations of how much they would effect the outcome, the votes  were officially cast and certified as counted.

So there are two issues - what to do with seating and counting the delegates is turning out very different from what the committee and the party expected at the last vote about delegates and punishment.  However it turns out it is nothing to do with the certified votes cast in Michigan and Florida.  They have been counted.  If campaign s, supporters or media counters are leaving them out of the popular vote, it has more to do with being convinced to do so to favor Obama than with the reality of the certified vote count.

by itsadryheat 2008-05-03 05:20PM | 0 recs
You want to talk about the Rules...

...Then let's talk.

Let's talk about how Rule 20.C.1.a set the penalty for violating the timing provisions of the Delegate Selection Rules for the 2008 Democratic National Convention as a 50% reduction in the pledged delegate votes and a 100% reduction in the unpledged delegate votes.

Let's talk about how an activist panel decided to take an additional step and strip two important states, Florida & Michigan, of their voting rights at the Democratic National Convention instead of strictly adhering to the penalties enumerated under Rule 20.C.1.a.

You want to talk about rules, then let's talk about the fact that when Barack Obama held a press conference in Florida after a fundraiser [Source:  9/30/2007 Tampa (Florida) Tribune article "Obama Vows To 'Do What's Right'"], he violated Rule 20.C.1.b and as such is not entitled to a single delegate out of the Sunshine State.

No one forced Sen. Obama to yank his name off the ballot in Michigan and there is no rule that requires a candidate for the Democratic presidential nomination to compete in all fifty states.  The fact is that Sen. Obama got a little too cute and now it's biting him in the ass.

You say that I want to "the DNC to change the rules at the endgame so the candidate who has lost can overturn the will of the people" and you also say that I want to hand "hand Fl and MI to Hillary."

I never said that.  My position is publicly documented in my hometown newspaper, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution:

"He [Walker] said he...could support a compromise where the original DNC sanctions are applied: loss of half the delegations."  [Source:  3/23/2008 Atlanta (Georgia) Journal-Constitution article "Choice of Democratic nominee may rest with panel"]

by Andre Walker 2008-05-03 02:23AM | 0 recs
Re: You want to talk about the Rules...

So you're saying that Hillary Clinton violated the rights of the Florida and Michigan voters by agreeing  to the decertification? That Hillary Clinton was part of a conspiracy with Barack Obama to disenfranchise states she may or may not have won in order to keep herself from winning them.

Seriously does your head hurt when you wrap it around that much triplethink? Are you that blinded by authority worship?

by cdreid 2008-05-03 02:28AM | 0 recs
I'm not debating rhetoric...

...I'm taking issue with your non-reality based opinion that restoring the voting rights of Florida and Michigan equates to "changing the rules in the middle of the game."

The fact is that if you read the rules (and I'll be glad to e-mail them to you), you'll see that there are several mechanisms in place to A.) strip a state of its voting rights; or B.) restore a state's voting rights.

This isn't some "coup" or some "triplethink" as you'd like to call it.  These are the rules.  I highly suggest you read them and educate yourself as to how the system works.

by Andre Walker 2008-05-03 02:35AM | 0 recs
Re: I'm not debating rhetoric...

What he's saying equates to changing the rules in the middle of the game is one candidate saying states won't count and then campaigning to high heaven to make them count when it's politically advantageous for her.  It's what I would call DISINGENUOUS.

by The Distillery 2008-05-03 03:20AM | 0 recs
Re: I'm not debating rhetoric...

But you are stating what options were available before the committee voted on applying the rules.  
No one is arguing that there weren't other options available at the time the rules committee voted.  But that was before the primaries.  When the rules committee voted to apply the rules that are in place, they strictly defined the field of play and all candidates knew exacly what that was.  To go back and apply a different set of rules now, after the primaries have run course, is to effectively change the field of play.  On a different field, our candidates would have run a different campaign.  

Bad baseball analogy:  Red Sox beat Yankees 10-9, but Yankees had more triples.  

by haystax calhoun 2008-05-03 06:51AM | 0 recs
Re: You want to talk about the Rules...

Nice post.

Does this language seem odd to you?

"In addition, none of the members of the Democratic National Committee and no other unpledged delegate allocated pursuant to Rule 8.A."

Rule 8.A talks about apportionment.  The superdelegates are nowhere to be found in Rule 8.  It would appear that the rules, as written, have no effect on unpledged delegates (aka superdelegates).  

Why exclude them from FL/MI?

by BPK80 2008-05-03 02:34AM | 0 recs
Re: You want to talk about the Rules...

Or why include them at all!  That's the best idea yet.  It was the legislators who disenfranchised the voters anyway.  Regardless of what happens with those states, the superdelegates from them should not be seated.


by The Distillery 2008-05-03 02:41AM | 0 recs
Re: You want to talk about the Rules...

FYI, the legislators included as superdelegates are Democratic members of U.S. Congress, not the state legislators you mention, most of whom were GOP anyway.  

The Democratic SD's are incorporated into the process by Rule 9.A.  Do you want to rewrite the rules that provide for superdelegate participation in the nomination?

Frankly, I do, but shockingly enough: I know that we can't "change" the rules in mid-season.  When I say I want them removed, I'm looking ahead to 2012.  No excluding states, no caucuses, and no superdelegates.  

by BPK80 2008-05-03 02:46AM | 0 recs
Re: You want to talk about the Rules...

Yes, but Carl Levin has a history of trying to move the Michigan primary up.  Howard Dean isn't the only Chairman who's warned him of the consequences.  Terry McAuliffe did as well.  I don't know the history of the Florida one, except for the YouTube of their ghastly minority leader making a speech about how he officially opposes the new date on record, while he can barely contain his smirk.

Yes, superdelegates should be taken out.  But apparently it's in the charter.  So that kind of shuts that out.

Have you ever been to a caucus?  I know as an HRC supporter you're supposed to officially hate them, but they're actually quite fun.  And they help you meet your fellow Democratic neighbors.  I wish we could make the entire primary caucuses.  But then again, I live in Texas where we get both.

by The Distillery 2008-05-03 03:02AM | 0 recs
Re: You want to talk about the Rules...

Fun isn't anywhere on my list of criteria for what constitutes a fair and representative election.  

We don't caucus in Pennsylvania.  

by BPK80 2008-05-03 04:30AM | 0 recs
Re: You want to talk about the Rules...

But you send out voter registration cards with inaccurate polling locations to new voters?  I wonder who was responsible for that.  The marvels of your state never cease.

by The Distillery 2008-05-03 10:09AM | 0 recs
Re: You want to talk about the Rules...

Why yes and in fact, as you suggest, it was all my fault.  

by BPK80 2008-05-03 01:16PM | 0 recs
Re: You want to talk about the Rules...

They might be fun for the young, healthy, aggressive males with lots of time on their hands that want to duke it out with others and coerce them to vote their way, but probably not for those that are not so young, healthy and aggressive. I have read all kinds of comments from people that didn't find them fun at ALL.

I really like our voting system here in Arkansas. You have about a week, all day long, to vote. No lines, no coercion, privacy and you can pick your day and time that works for you. More people are involved that way, and you get a better turnout. It's' far more democratic.

by splashy 2008-05-22 09:40AM | 0 recs
That's a good question...

...And that is actually part of the argument that Florida and Michigan is making to the RBC.

The argument that's being made is that under Article Two, Section 4, paragraph h of the Charter of the Democratic Party of the United States, "The National Convention shall be composed of delegates equally divided between men and women.  The delegates shall be chosen through processes that:  (h) provide for all members of the Democratic National Committee to serve as unpledged delegates..."

Florida and Michigan are taking the position that since the Charter of the Democratic Party of the United States provides for all members of the Democratic National Committee to serve as unpledged delegates, then the Rules & Bylaws Committee acted improperly by stripping the voting rights of the unpledged delegates and may have violated the Democratic Party's Charter.

I think it's a valid argument, but ultimately it's up to the membership of the RBC to decide.

by Andre Walker 2008-05-03 02:44AM | 0 recs
Re: That's a good question...

It seems there may be two arguments here.

One is that the superdelegates originate from the charter that is intrinsically outside the scope of the RBC's authority.

The second is that the penalty section, as written, either intentionally or unintentionally omits reference to the unpledged delegates whose incorporation is codified at Rule 9, not in Rule 8.A.  

"ZOMG it's teh leeeegal TYPO from HELL!"


I would think the most reasonable result would be to seat both states' superdelegates fully.  Apply the 50% penalty to the pledged from MI/FL.  Michigan's Uncommitted should be treated as exactly that: uncommitted.  Obama may appeal for their endorsement, as may Clinton.  

If Obama disagrees on the Michigan Uncommitted issue, then whack him with the mandatory penalty for campaigning in Florida.  

Funny how with all the rules talk going on, the one rule that is most unambiguous is the one penalizing Obama for campaigning in Florida.  

by BPK80 2008-05-03 02:53AM | 0 recs
Re: You want to talk about the Rules...

I'm not sure how taking a question from a reporter on the street constitutes a news conference, but if you want to make that case, please try to prove it and don't presume that the article you quote did it for you.  Because it didn't.

by The Distillery 2008-05-03 02:51AM | 0 recs
Re: You want to talk about the Rules...
Yeah, I thought was was kind of funny (strange) too.
You quoted a source quoting you.  Funny how the media can be made to validate ones message.
by haystax calhoun 2008-05-03 07:05AM | 0 recs
BPK *rolls eyes*

"So you want the DNC to change the rules at the endgame..."

This is really uninformed.

The power to include Florida and Michigan inheres within the rules!  Excluding them is optional, per the rules.  Check them out yourself; it's a long read but worth your time if you're clouded by all of the falsehoods circulating about these rules.  

Don't argue the rules unless you know what the rules are.  

by BPK80 2008-05-03 02:14AM | 0 recs
Re: BPK *rolls eyes*

Hmmm... lets see. All the candidates agree to abide by the DNC ruling that Florida  and Michigan lose their delegates for not following the rules. Then after Hillary has clearly lost you want to reverse that and count the votes in those states where Barack either wasnt on the ballot or never campaigned and was unknown.. and thats not changing the rules at the end of the game.

I'll bet people just loooove playing games with you. Not.

Seriously how can you people say this stuff with a straight face.

by cdreid 2008-05-03 02:31AM | 0 recs

That is a very primitive understanding of how the rules and procedural process have played out and will continue to unfold.  

I know we Clinton supporters usually don't condescend (cuzz wweeeere NOTT eDJUK8ted), but your crude understanding of the DNC delegation rules would have you laughed off the stage if you ever recited the above to an informed audience.  I'll leave it to you to figure out why.

Good luck and remember:

Knowledge is power!

by BPK80 2008-05-03 02:41AM | 0 recs
Re: Crude

That's just not nice.

You know very well he's not talking about the official rules of the DNC.  He's talking about their agreements that, in HRC's words, Michigan (and Florida) will not count for anything.

You can challenge rulings and delegations to your heart's content.  And then I'll see you in August at the convention when we nominate Barack Obama for President.

by The Distillery 2008-05-03 03:08AM | 0 recs
Re: Crude

Which is why the RBC is meeting. Their rules override any "agreements" or pledges the candidates had. The rules also allow for seating the delegates after the state violates the rules:

Possible sanctions include, but are not limited to:
reduction of the state's delegation; pursuant to Rule 21.C., recommending the
establishment of a committee to propose and implement a process which will
result in the selection of a delegation from the affected state which shall (i) be
broadly representative, (ii) reflect the state's division of presidential preference
and uncommitted status and (iii) involve as broad participation as is practicable
under the circumstances; 3e5b3bfa1c1718d07f_6rm6bhyc4.pdf

by skohayes 2008-05-03 03:38AM | 0 recs
Re: Crude

I don't know whether the contributor is a "he" or a "she" but I'll follow your lead for consistency and ease of reading.  Oh, and of course, sexism.  

Distillery, what he says and what you claim he says don't match.

Check it out.  


"You know very well he's not talking about the official rules of the DNC. He's talking about their agreements that, in HRC's words, Michigan (and Florida) will not count for anything." (emphasis added)


"All the candidates agree to abide by the DNC ruling that Florida and Michigan lose their delegates for not following the rules."

I have no idea why you're claiming he didn't say something he actually said.  

"You can challenge rulings and delegations to your heart's content."

Luckily for Obama and his minions, I won't be the one challenging anything.  If I were in charge, there would be no mass misunderstanding of the MI/FL situation because one of my primary goals would be to publicize this craven attempt at voter suppression.  

"And then I'll see you in August at the convention when we nominate Barack Obama for President."

This is the most dubious claim of all.  

by BPK80 2008-05-03 04:16AM | 0 recs
Re: Crude

Yes, I assume the mentioned commenter is a guy.  This particular commenter tends to write slightly edgy stuff that can border on crass, and as a woman, I tend to assume those ones are guys.  Just like I usually tend to assume know-it-alls are guys as well.  I could be wrong, but I'd rather err on the side of being wrong of accusing him of being a guy than being wrong of insulting girls.

He's pointing out that your candidate signed a pledge to abide by the ruling.  I'm not sure how believe ruling and rules are the same word.  Yes, they have the same root word, and one is the result of the other, but they are not the same thing.  Rules are fixed, written nouns.  A ruling is a judgment determined from the rules, which is pretty much what he said in his comment.  Are we done with our grammar lesson for the day?

You guys never cease to amaze me with the way you try to blame Obama for MI and FL.

You're not a delegate to the convention?  How unfortunate.  I guess I won't see you there.

by The Distillery 2008-05-03 10:06AM | 0 recs
Re: Crude

"This particular commenter tends to write slightly edgy stuff that can border on crass, and as a woman, I tend to assume those ones are guys.  Just like I usually tend to assume know-it-alls are guys as well."

Well, keep swimming in your own stereotypes.  

"Are we done with our grammar lesson for the day?"

I'm not sure why you will go to such lengths to condescend to me but if it helps gets you through the day, then by all means, feel free to continue.

"You're not a delegate to the convention?  How unfortunate.  I guess I won't see you there."

Congratulations to you.  I don't see this having any relevance to our discussion, but if it gives you happiness, then I am happy for you.  

by BPK80 2008-05-03 01:27PM | 0 recs
Re: Crude

Right, somehow, the Rules Committee should base their ruling on what Hillary Clinton once told a caller on some radio show in New Hampshire.  Because that's how it works.  Everyone within the Democratic Party was looking to that radio show to find out the official position of the Clinton campaign on Michigan.  And of course, she didn't even mention Florida, but as long as you're at it, why not slip it in there like she conceded that as well?

Look, this is a simple game of gotcha you're playing.  Pointing to what Hillary said may have some weight as a political argument, but it is meaningless as a legal matter.

I guess we can wait and see how much time the Rules Committee spends discussing that fateful call-in show in New Hampshire.  My guess: not much.

by Steve M 2008-05-03 08:39AM | 0 recs
Re: Crude

I didn't slip it in there.  I put it in parentheses.  Don't imply that I'm being devious.

I don't believe in the game of gotcha.  I cringe when I hear anybody accuse somebody of playing it, especially my candidate Obama.  If someone has a quote of you with a different position, you answer the damn question as to why your position has changed, not pretend it hasn't and they're misrepresenting the quote.

And I never made it as a legal argument.  I said that the HRC campaign has changed its position on the whether the Michigan (and I believe Florida) vote will count.  The committee can use whatever merits it finds to make a decision, which would not be a legal matter either.  You realize the DNC is not governed by government laws but by its own documents, correct?

Thank you for insulting my intelligence by accusing me of baseness not even in my comment.  I'll be sure to return the favor soon.

by The Distillery 2008-05-03 09:55AM | 0 recs
Re: Vote Counting the DNC Rules

Well if we are going to talk about "The Rules" then I suppose we should give some thought to the penalty to be exacted on the other (I think 3) states that also violated the DNC primary timetable.  Do we take all their delegates away?  And if so, how in the world does Obama get to his magic number with no delegates from Iowa, New Hampshire and especially South Carolina?  Just a question for Mr. Roosevelt the "rules geek".

by Demo Dan in Dayton 2008-05-03 04:46AM | 0 recs
Brazile uncommitted? HA, that's a joke.

I hope she gets her ass fired - soon!

She and Dean are totally responsbile for this f*ck-up and they show pay the price.

by CoyoteCreek 2008-05-03 05:47AM | 0 recs
Good Diary

Very good diary, though I think it brushes over an important point. While all those people will eventually declare support for Obama or Clinton (I'm pretty sure they are all (super)delegates), their ultimate loyalty is to the man who put them in their position of power, Gov. Dean.

I think if you want to know how they will vote, just stay tuned into Dean. If his rhetoric starts bending w.r.t. FL and MI, the expect the RBC to bend, if not, don't bet on it. If this goes to the credentials Committee, then I believe the members will more likely have more direct loyalty to the candidates.

by Lost Thought 2008-05-03 06:11AM | 0 recs
Thanks for this informative piece

In my opinion, this is critical to resolve, and no candidate should argue for disenfranchisement of these two states.  

Pretty good for 5 am diary!!!!

by 4justice 2008-05-03 06:32AM | 0 recs
Re: Vote Counting the DNC Rules & Bylaws Commi

I would have expected this body to punt, because it's awfully rare for any committee to reverse its own decision, but the dynamics of this primary make me wonder.  The school of thought which says the extended primary jeopardizes our chances for November has its adherents, and if the Rules Committee punts, that just ensures the process keeps going.  The thing is, as this diary points out, the only way this can be a "final decision" is if they vote to include MI and FL, which won't necessarily be their judgment.

Also, there's a lot to be said for resolving these procedural issues while there's still some uncertainty about the final outcome.  If all the delegates are set and it's crystal-clear what impact this decision would have in terms of determining a winner, that's when it starts to look more like an illegitimate coup.  Frankly, it should have been worked out months ago for this very reason.

If I were king, I would have made it the first order of business after the inconclusive results on Super Tuesday, but that's water under the bridge at this point.

by Steve M 2008-05-03 08:45AM | 0 recs


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