Give me a break. The freaking DNC had said the Florida primary was a beauty contest. That's the organization that runs the primary process. It really doesn't matter what Nelson, Martinez, or Mickey Mouse might have said - this was established well ahead of the election. Florida (and Michigan) were told ahead of time this would happen if they went ahead with their primaries, and they chose to go ahead with them anyway.
And there was more than the primary on the ballot anyway. There were important property tax relief ballot initiatives that lots of people down the state were voting for. But why do you think Florida was the only state so far this primary season where Republican turnout exceeded Democratic turnout?
If Obama and Edwards had been allowed to campaign there, his terrific campaign organizers would have had a chance to put their efforts into the state. Candidates would have come down to take about local issues that mattered to Floridians. Obama would have held some of those rallies that overflow stadiums and get tons of local press. But instead, Clinton got to win on name recognition. Anyone who says this was fair to all candidates is on another planet.
That's Jan, then on Feb 5th, Clinton is going to win a lot more states and their delegates. So will Edwards. They will both ensure that Obama does not have enough delegates to win the nomination on his own.
This is the major flaw in your reasoning. What makes you think that Clinton (or Edwards, for that matter) are "going to win a lot more states and their delegates" with no real wins pre-2/5? How many states? How many delegates?
Right now, we don't have any post-Iowa polls that I know of for the big 2/5 states, such as NY, CA, TX, NJ, etc. So we can only assume that all of these states are experiencing the same Obama bounce in SC (22 point swing) and the bounce we're seeing in national polls (13-17 points). That bounce will likely also increase after a NH win (and a Nevada win, SC win, etc.) Yes, fladem says bounces can reverse, but they also can stay constant. Without any real indicators that the bounce is actually reversing, you'd have to assume the dynamics of the race stay the same as they are now.
I'll go on a limb and say, unless something seismic happens between now and 2/5, Clinton will eke out wins in NY and AR (where Obama will still get a sizable share of delegates), Edwards will win nowhere, and Obama will hold at least a 2:1 delegate lead over Clinton after 2/5. At that point, if Clinton is still in the race, it will be largely symbolic.
I think people are a little paranoid about the next president being as irresponsible as Bush. Not every president will take us to war on a whim. It's just common sense for the commander-in-chief to not commit to anything prematurely, whether it's war or a promise not to go to war.
I would imagine that, if a brokered solution were necessary, it would be brokered well in advance of the convention. I can't imagine that either party would want to go the six months from February to August with that kind of uncertainty.
How about we do something similar to what we did a couple of years ago, and take up a collection to pay for our own poll?
An inexpensive poll of Iowa or New Hampshire, with all announced candidates listed, and no pushing of undecideds, would be something I would contribute to. And any whistles and bells we can add on would just be gravy.