Thursday, December 6, 2007

Why Michigan and Florida don't care about DNC threats

Vote Here. Image originally uploaded by cursedthing.

So the DNC attempted to halt the competition over who gets to vote first and ended up potentially alienating the voters in two must-win states in the process.
In August, the Democratic National Committee responded by stripping Florida of its convention delegates after the state scheduled its primary for Jan. 29. Yesterday in Vienna, the DNC's rules and bylaws committee issued the same penalty to Michigan for its Jan. 15 primary date.
If you're wondering why the DNC didn't short-circuit the problem by cracking down on Iowa and New Hampshire (whose insistence on being first is driving the race to the bottom), it's because Iowa and New Hampshire don't care about losing their delegates, they want to be kingmakers. These states not only demand that they go first, they demand that everyone else wait a week before voting. This way they are able to dictate the debate and compel the candidates to focus on local issues (like farm subsidies and small town "values") instead of federal ones.

Of course, every state thinks its own interests are the most important and the larger, more urban ones have been chafing at the idea that the list of candidates available to them has been culled by voters who have very different priorities.

So Michigan and Florida have taken the gamble. And does anyone believe that if Hillary Clinton wins those primaries by a 20-30 point margin the rest of us will even have Obama or Edwards to vote for come February 5th?

If they can decide the victor, they don't need any delegates.

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