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Reinstating the Delegates

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This is pretty appalling:

This is the sort of decision that has the potential to tear the party apart. In an attempt to retain some control over the process and keep the various states from accelerating their primaries into last summer, the Democratic National Committee warned Michigan and Florida that if they insisted on advancing their primary debates, their delegates wouldn’t be seated and the campaigns would be asked not to participate in their primaries. This was agreed to by all parties (save, of course, the states themselves).

With no one campaigning, Clinton, of course, won Michigan — she was the only Democrat to only both to get on the ballot, as I understand it — and will likely win Florida. And because the race for delegates is likely to be close, she wants those wins to count. So she’s fighting the DNC’s decision, and asking her delegates — those she’s akready won — to overturn it at the convention. And since this is a complicated, internal-party matter that sounds weird to those not versed in it (of course Michigan and Florida should count!), she’s adding a public challenge that, if the other Democrats deny, will make them seem anti-Michigan and Florida.

It’s dirty business on the part of the Clinton campaign, no question. And cloaking the nasty little power grab with the language of democratic inclusion irritates me even more. I can’t say that I’m completely surprised, but I would have preferred if Hillary had demonstrated more appreciation for party unity than this; it amounts to an effort to steal delegates.

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  • It’s just politics. Fuck the DNC.

  • Mark S.

    I’ve heard a number of times about how Clinton was the only major candidate to appear on Michigan’s ballot but I’ve never seen any explanation as to how she came to be the only one. Anyone familiar with this?
    I wondered about this too, and it’s because most of the other candidates withdrew their names from the ballot.
    As for the matter at hand, no, Clinton shouldn’t get to change the rules now, but c’mon, on the Sleaze-o-Meter this is like a 3.

  • Adam

    Can someone explain to me how it’s logically consistent to whine about an Obama national ad buy running in Florida while at the same time arguing that Florida should be included in the primary process?
    The Clinton campaign hasn’t campaigned in Michigan or Florida more than the others, as far as I’m aware, so it seems to me that the call for including those states rings pretty hollow. It’s also pretty disingenuous to say that Michigan’s delegates should be included when they would have been allocated proportionally had there been a real campaign there — including the delegates at this point would nullify the votes of the other candidates’ supporters who didn’t get to make their voices heard.
    The bottom line is that, if you object to the DNC’s decision about the primaries, protesting that decision is one thing; flouting it by actively campaigning in those states anyway would be another; but not campaigning in those states and then asking for the delegates is the worst of all possible worlds: FL and MI’s objection to the early primaries was that it distorts the nomination process; throwing a monkey-wrench into the system like this is exacerbating the very problem they were objecting to, and the fact that it’s being done for transparently manipulative purposes doesn’t help those states’ cause at all.

  • About all I can say is “good for Ms. Clinton!” — the idiotic disbarring of the Florida delegates because, omg!, they had a primary at the wrong time was a disaster waiting from the get-go.
    Yup.

  • Dan

    Someone one in politics is playing politics? OMG! WTF? These are bad people. I don’t want Hilary to win but come on. I read that people want the democrats to grow a pair and stand up for themselves and then when they play rough, everyone gets all upset. I don’t get it. It might put the candidates in a bad light if they try to contest this but hey, it is politics.
    Which brings me to my next point, this friggin’ system that makes me, in California, not have any say in the nominee at all.

  • This is one brouhaha that I saw coming from the get go. I doubt that the Clinton crew think that they will get the delegates reestablished for the first ballot but if they can broker a deal to get them counted for a second or third ballot then things get interesting.
    And no matter what anyone says, keeping her name on the ballot was a shrewd move even if the delegates never get reinstated. She didn’t campaign, she didn’t “participate”, she just didn’t void an entry form. When November rolls around and if she is the candidate, some voters may think that she cares about Michigan.

  • Oh and now I’ve tracked down her statement and not the drivel that the commentators have been spewing.
    According to this line in the statement- “so I will ask my Democratic convention delegates to support seating the delegations from Florida and Michigan”- she is going to ask her delegates from other states to let some of the Michigan and Florida delegates to take their places for the vote. This isn’t adding new delegates to her side, this isn’t even changing the rules of the game- this is just changing some people for other people in the chairs already designated for Clinton supporters. Oh, and on an entirely voluntary basis. The EVIL, the EVIL… good Lord folks, the woman can’t even do something relatively nice without people going apeshit.
    (this section also up at Ezra.)

  • Matt Weiner

    According to this line in the statement- “so I will ask my Democratic convention delegates to support seating the delegations from Florida and Michigan”- she is going to ask her delegates from other states to let some of the Michigan and Florida delegates to take their places for the vote.
    The part in quotes doesn’t mean that MI and FL delegates will be replacing delegates from other states, and nothing in the full statement does either. She’s going to ask her delegates from other states to vote to seat the MI and FL delegates as additional delegates.
    I read that people want the democrats to grow a pair and stand up for themselves and then when they play rough, everyone gets all upset.
    I want them to stand up for themselves AGAINST REPUBLICANS. This is different from stabbing other Democrats in the back. Jeebus, by your lights we should be happy that Harry Reid is trying to screw Dodd on FISA because hey, he’s standing up for himself.

  • jdkbrown

    It certainly feels like more than 3 on the sleeze-o-meter when it’s your vote being fucked with.

  • Silver Owl

    Last I read, Edwards, Obama and Clinton were on Florida’s ballots. If Florida’s delegates are reinstated there is still a decent representation of the voters. I do not have a problem with this.
    The issue I have with Michigan, being a Michigan resident, delegates being reinstated is not that Clinton “won” all the delegate votes but that the delegates can choose the candidate without full input from Michigan voters.
    Voting uncommitted meant that the voter was telling the delegates to make the choice because “we don’t know.” Which in reality was not true. Clinton or uncommitted was no choice at all. Not all voters were represented in Michigan yet the delegates will be able to choose who they want. That I’m not cool with.

  • lemuel pitkin

    While I share the sentiments of Mike, Mark S., Adam, Diane and Dan, I must say I’m rather suspicious when a bunch of new commenters with generic names all suddenly show up to take the same side in a debate.
    I want them to stand up for themselves AGAINST REPUBLICANS.
    The problem is, this stuff is largely a matter of style, temperament, background and personal history. You can’t necessarily turn it on and off.

  • Mark S.

    It certainly feels like more than 3 on the sleeze-o-meter when it’s your vote being fucked with.
    How is Hillary fucking with anyone’s vote? If anyone fucked with the voters of Michigan, it was the DNC (mostly) and the candidates who took their names off the ballot.
    Actually, the GOP handled this situation better. They only stripped the states that held early primaries of half of their delegates.

  • I made this point elsewhere–asking or petitioning for a change of rules is *not against the rules* and its not even *not cricket.* Its just a petition or an appeal. Its not breaking the rules, and its not particularly underhanded. I don’t support Clinton’s move here because I support clinton, I support her move because its polite, farsighted, and agressive and I think those are good qualities in a candidate. I’m sorry that edwards and obama can’t think a little faster on their feet. I think that’s important in a candidate.
    aimai

  • Adam

    I must say I’m rather suspicious when a bunch of new commenters with generic names all suddenly show up to take the same side in a debate.
    Been here for some time, thanks — ever since Publius linked an old Roe post from Legal Fiction, as I recall. (Hey! It’s like anniversary week!) Feel free to go read some of the old Nader posts if you’re keen to verify — those comments probably stand out, though don’t expect them to have been very pleasant :) (I try to keep with the blog’s general Nader theme when I can.)
    Anyway, I sincerely apologize for the genericness of my name.
    …Personally, I want to know who these “Rob” and “D” characters are. Pretty fishy — I demand you prove you’re not Scott’s sockpuppets!

  • Adam

    I don’t support Clinton’s move here because I support clinton, I support her move because its polite, farsighted, and agressive and I think those are good qualities in a candidate.
    Yes, your Clinton support is clearly a big coincidence. I often find myself thinking, “aimai sure is harsh on Clinton — why not criticize Obama once in a while instead?” It almost makes me wonder whether it’s really coincidental at all.

  • Adam

    How is Hillary fucking with anyone’s vote? If anyone fucked with the voters of Michigan, it was the DNC (mostly) and the candidates who took their names off the ballot.
    Yes, obviously the way to address Michigan and Florida’s concerns that some states’ votes count more than others is to just fuck with things more, until no one has any idea which delegates will be counted and which won’t. If no one’s votes count, then it’s a level playing field! Then we’ll complain about who’s allowed to advertise where, just to make it interesting.
    You guys cannot seriously be this dense. “Hey, Florida’s electoral process is all fucked up! Let’s wait until after they’ve voted and then argue over the delegates!” That worked out really well for us last time.

  • I keep wondering why Edwards and Obama removed their names from the ballot if all they really had to do to comply with the bullshit disenfranchisement agreement was not campaign. Seems like Clinton won that particular round of campaign chicken, more or less by doing nothing.
    And now she’s engaging in another round of campaign chicken. Because Edwards and Obama can’t exactly say that they don’t want MI and FL delegates to be shut out. That would kill them in the general.

  • Er, that they *want* them to be shut out.

  • Vincent

    It always astounds me how many people are willing to rationalize unethical behavior in the realm of politics that they would never condone in oh, say, the War on Terror.
    Obviously taking away someone’s life or freedom is much worse than trying to lie and cheat your way into political office but isn’t fighting for a fair election just as important as fighting for someone’s rights? Isn’t democracy supposed to be about both?
    Why is it ‘anything goes’ acceptable when it comes to choosing the leader of the free world?
    Clinton won Michigan by default because the other candidates saw no reason to compete in a state that didn’t count. How is it fair to the other candidates or democracy to allow her to get those delegates? If she wants Michigan then maybe they should do a do-over.

  • lemuel pitkin

    Adam-
    Glad to hear you’re legit. Like I said, I agree with you on this issue. And with Aimai:
    asking or petitioning for a change of rules is *not against the rules* and its not even *not cricket.* Its just a petition or an appeal. Its not breaking the rules, and its not particularly underhanded.
    This is an important point. Clinton has simply made a request. The DNC is free to reject it. Where there is ambiguity in the rules of an adversarial or competitive process, it is not unethical to ask for them to be interpreted in your favor.
    This whole thing reminds me of a previous round of Clinton angst when Bill said that GQ couldn’t put him on its cover if the issue included a planned negative piece on the Clinton campaign. Some people thought that was creepy, but to me, it was perfectly natural and unobjectionable; the breach of ethics, if any, was on the part of the GQ editors who complied.

  • lemuel pitkin

    Actually, I see I was wrong on the substance of what Adam was saying too — he’s one of the purists. Turns out I don’t agree with you on this issue at all. Sorry again.

  • You can’t necessarily turn it on and off.
    As Iraq proves, Clinton is more than capable of “turning it off” when it comes to enabling Republicans.

  • Adam

    Actually, I see I was wrong on the substance of what Adam was saying too — he’s one of the purists. Turns out I don’t agree with you on this issue at all. Sorry again.
    I don’t know what “purist” means. Is that a euphemism for “agrees that this is a bullshit move by the Clinton campaign”?
    Or is that a backhanded way of asserting that someone supports Obama, but that their support is for some reason illegitimate or ill-founded? That’d a pretty bold claim to be making with no basis whatsoever.
    And if that is the subtext there, then in addition to being a pissant argument, it’d also be wrong. I was actually pretty excited that Clinton seemed willing to drop the political facade a bit before and after New Hampshire — my main concern with her is that I simply don’t think she’s a very capable politician. Legislator, yes — but I feel like she’s too reliant on her persona and playbook, much like Gore and Kerry were, and I don’t think she’ll be a viable candidate unless she gets past that.
    At the end of the day, I think she’s a good person and would be a fine President, but doesn’t have Obama’s political finesse. If she manages to find her voice in the course of the primary, then I’ll happily support her, but she’s pretty much reverted to form since New Hampshire, which really disappoints me. I’ve said before on LGM that I’d really like to see a campaign where Clinton engages on a personal level, and I think she’d probably win if she did.
    But the Nevada lawsuit and now this move with the delegates are scummy and ham-handed. I do object to this sort of thing in a primary campaign, but at the end of the day I’m concerned about winning the White House — so my concern with the way the Clinton campaign’s been operating is mainly that (a) they’re screwing with their own party, and (b) these are amateur-hour political mistakes.
    She’s simply not living up to her billing as a capable political operative, and seeing her stumble again and again and get wrong-footed by a supposedly novice first-term Senator, and still get billed as the “electable” candidate strikes me as the same sort of mistake that landed us Kerry in 2004. New Hampshire showed that she’s capable of a lot more, but I’m not willing to wait around for her to figure it out until after the election like Gore did, and pulling stuff like this move with the delegates does not inspire my confidence.

  • I keep wondering why Edwards and Obama removed their names from the ballot if all they really had to do to comply with the bullshit disenfranchisement agreement was not campaign. Seems like Clinton won that particular round of campaign chicken, more or less by doing nothing.
    Much in the same way that drunk drivers on roads they know aren’t policed win, or people who cheat on their trusting spouses win. If you betray people’s trust and violate only semi-formal guarantees of good faith with no significant punitive safeguards, you win!

  • ML

    “I keep wondering why Edwards and Obama removed their names from the ballot if all they really had to do to comply with the bullshit disenfranchisement agreement was not campaign.”
    Because, as Josh Marshall notes, the DNC required that the candidates neither campaign nor *participate* in the Michigan and Florida primaries. By keeping her name on the ballot, Clinton had already broken the rules.
    But of course she did, because she was already planning to pull this bullshit.

  • Adam

    I keep wondering why Edwards and Obama removed their names from the ballot if all they really had to do to comply with the bullshit disenfranchisement agreement was not campaign.
    Josh Marshall actually has it right as far as the Clinton campaign basically pulling a fast one as far as the MI ballot, some specious claims to the contrary notwithstanding.
    D-Day explains it:

    The candidates didn’t take their name off the ballot in Florida because state law would require them to drop out of the race by doing so. Big Tent Democrat trying to use this as a “gotcha” is frankly absurd. There’s a very consistent pattern of Clinton pushing every advantage, regardless of the pre-arranged rules, in order to win what appears to be a protracted delegate fight. She is breaking the rules to change the rules.

    It may be worth noting that D-Day has not been particularly pro-Obama or anti-Clinton by any stretch of the imagination.

  • Adam

    … I swear, I will never understand how blockquotes work around here. I’m having flashbacks of trying to hack HTML to render in the old Apple IE.

  • Incontinentia Buttocks

    The Democratic Party is appalling. And the Clintons are responsible for much of what makes it appalling. In the mid-1990s, I had had enough. Since I saw no signs that the Democratic Party could be reformed, I left it. I’ve never regretted that decision.
    All of you who find this appalling, undemocratic and un-progressive: I totally agree. I also agree with aimai: the problem is not Hillary Clinton. The problem is your rotten and corrupt party, for which Hillary Clinton (like her husband before her) is an unfortunately appropriate leader.
    Ask yourselves whether or not you can honestly imagine this party reforming itself. If you can, though I respectfully disagree, that’s wonderful. Work for reform. I honestly hope you succeed.
    If you can’t imagine this corporate, militarist dinosaur improving itself, by all means leave it behind. You’ll be happy you did!

  • Matt Weiner

    Yes, your Clinton support is clearly a big coincidence.
    I’ve disagreed vehemently with aimai on this thread, but I should point out that elsewhere she’s said that she supports Edwards, and if Edwards drops out before Feb. 5 she’ll vote for Obama.
    (Though it seems to me that she has a pro-Clinton tendency in the same way that I have a pro-Obama tendency even though I was officially supporting Edwards, or Dodd or Richardson when they were in the race. I just respond more to pro-Obama arguments. In Edwards’s case, this is mostly because I don’t want to give Petey the satisfaction.)
    I also suspect that an influx of commenters on a single thread means that some big-time blog linked here. And I’m pretty sure there’s nothing you can do about formatting after a block quote.
    Thus endeth the metacommentary.
    Clinton has simply made a request. The DNC is free to reject it. Where there is ambiguity in the rules of an adversarial or competitive process, it is not unethical to ask for them to be interpreted in your favor.
    Maybe. But in this case there’s no ambiguity whatsoever. And it is unethical to publicly request someone to go back on an agreement you’ve made when it would be embarrassing for them to refuse your request, because low-information people will not understand why they’re refusing. (Embarrassing for the reasons that zuzu and others are pointing out.)
    It’s roughly the equivalent of that legislative stunt where the GOP inserted some goofy provision about fighting Al Qaeda into a bill they didn’t like that, if it was approved, would kill the bill for obscure procedural reasons. The point was to either kill the bill or be able say that the Democrats voted against fighting Al Qaeda; it was blackmail, not a request. Except here Clinton is blackmailing her own side, and if they don’t knuckle under it’ll hurt the Democrats in the general.
    Or, to put it in everyday terms: Suppose we agree that you’re going to give me a ride to the mall, and I’m going to walk back to my house a mile away, even though we know it’s going to rain, because you want to watch a movie and I want to go home. Just before the movie starts, I start whining in public: “Can you give me a ride home? It’s raining! I can’t believe you’re going to make me walk a mile in the rain!” Everyone around starts to tut-tut at what a cold-hearted bastard you are, for making me walk back in the rain. Am I not being an asshole, even though all I’m doing is making a request that we change our previous agreement?
    All this is aside from the question of whether we want a nominee who will be an asshole sometimes.

  • majkia

    yeah, let’s tear the bloody party apart. If good Democrats who had no bloody say in when their primary was are disenfranchised by antiquated primary rules then maybe we should throw the whole baby out with the bathwater.
    Thanks for telling me I don’t count, and I’m a scumbag cuz I live in Florida and I should have no say at all.

  • Hillary’s trick is almost as dirty as Obama’s with the difference that Obama purposefully made it impossible for people to vote.
    “Democratic Party” my butt

  • Pug

    Setting aside the ethics of her actions…
    Right, Lemuel, let’s just set ethics aside. After all, this is the Clintons we’re talking about here.

  • Steve H.

    Clinton did not just “make a request” that the rules be changed. She issued a public statement, a few days before the Florida primary, suggesting that it’s about whether people in Florida and Michigan will “have their voices heard,” and asking her “fellow potential nominees” to join her.
    Clinton is cheating. She acted dishonestly when she agreed not to “participate” in the Michigan primary.
    If someone wants to say that they still support her despite her cheating and dishonesty, fine, but there can be no doubt that she is acting very dishonorably and disrespectfully.
    I wasn’t going to donate to any candidates in the primary, but this has prompted me to send a few bucks Obama’s way.

  • Screwy Canuck

    I approved of Howard Dean’s tough stand against the states who wanted to move up their primary dates. He clearly wanted to avoid a ‘front loaded’ system where the majority of delegates would be won in the first month of the campaign. This would obviously favor those with large national profiles and Establishment credentials (think of Lieberman’s high polling in 2003), and would obviate the need for an actual campaign. So yes, HRC probably expected a coronation, but Dean’s recent work was a clear shot across her bow that things were gonna change.
    The larger issue that bothers me the most is the clear desire on the part of the Clinton camp to get rid of Dean and return the DNC to the old ways of Terry McAuliffe. If Clinton wins the White House, Dean’s ouster (and that of his people) is a foregone conclusion. It’s a way of guaranteeing that in future years, ONLY centrist senators and swing-state governors get a shot at the nomination.
    I just wish Dean had pushed things a little further along the path, perhaps issuing the prestigious early primary dates on a rotating basis to each and every state. Or is that just too radical for American politics? (Asks the foreigner with all due respect…)

  • I guess I’m missing something here. Has no one ever heard of “parliamentary procedure” or of any kind of political, parliamentary or other rules based maneuvering? Steve H is shocked that Clinton announced her intentions? I’ll give you another example of “clinton rules” (the bizarre conviction that things done by clintons have no historical precdent and are of an awfulness unmatched in human history)–what if she’d *done it secretly! without announcing it! on the internet! with vince foster’s body!
    This is too complex a point to be made in someone else’s blog comments, I think, but I would like to point out that one of the things I’m drawn to about HRC and about Obama is that in my experience of outsiders (by gender, religion, or race) they take a more instrumental view of the rules that have been crafted by the majority gender or race. To me that’s a good thing. Despite the acrimonious accusations that people (like lemeul pitkin! hey lemeul!) and me must be karl rove like scum sucking liars and deceivers (that might be from the long ezra thread) I don’t think that this is a make or break moral moment for HRC or for the party. Its just not. There are rules, and equity, and all that shit but there’s also a hierarchy of rules and equity issues. At the top, for me personally, lies the constitution adn the bill of rights. Much, much, much farther down lie things like “the parents association suggests that all children be forbidden from bringing lovies to class.” The laws of campaign finance rank very high, for me–but the administrative rules of the DNC (especially when it can be argued and shown that the major parties, the states themselves and their voters were not consulted) rank quite low. But in any event I continue to point out that every rule system, no matter how draconian or how well or ill thought out, has a gray area next to its bright lines. Petitioning to change a set of rules (even if agreed upon before hand), *announcing a petition* and even making other people *look like jerks* by naming your petition “america first” or “mother’s tears” isn’t actually illegal or immoral. Its called politics.
    aimai

  • However, I’m a huge Howard Dean fan so the assertion that HRC would dump Dean and put in McCauliffe probably puts the kibosh on my supporting her in the primary. since I think edwards is still going to be in the mix I’ll stick with edwards. If he goes I’ll vote for obama.
    aimai

  • Rob

    “Petitioning to change a set of rules (even if agreed upon before hand), *announcing a petition* and even making other people *look like jerks* by naming your petition “america first” or “mother’s tears” isn’t actually illegal or immoral. Its called politics.”
    Yes, but the manner through which an individual engages in politics is a legitimate target for critique, and even scorn. It’s true enough that Clinton is engaging in “politics” by trying to change the rules, even that she’s “trying to win”; it’s the manner of trying to win (by violating an agreement she freely entered into with other Democratic candidates, and by trying to essentially steal delegates that ought not belong to her) that makes me quite irritable.
    As Josh Marshall (among others) has pointed out, Clinton will probably win without needing these delegates, and the seating of the delegates will almost certainly be a moot point by the time the convention comes around. In my view, this makes Clinton’s efforts to claim the Michigan delegates in particular even less defensible.

  • Rob,
    I appreciate your trying to explain it to me, and I really mean that. I guess I still just don’t get it. I read Josh Marshall’s posts, too, and I found the entire argument puzzling. If everyone has always known the delegates would be seated, and its actually important to impress the voters of michigan and florida in order to win their allegiance and also keep their excitement high in the primary and the general, I just don’t see the sin. That’s entirely a different argument from the “it was pointlessly stupid because she won’t need the michigan delegates”… which is a utilitarian argument and not a moral one.
    I don’t, absolutely don’t, see this as a moral failing or even an impermissible twisting of the rules. So I don’t see it as indicative of a moral failing. IT might or might not be stupid politics–that is, itmight orm ight not play badly to the only viewers who matter, the great undecided mass of voters. But that’s far from a foregone conclusion.
    If I’m any indication voters are capable of being extremely disinterested and uninformed and also passionate–and also passionate, informed, and open to change on fairly whimsical notions. In fact, I see huge tracts of both those attitudes in the posts of the extreme clinton and extreme obama supporters each of whom, at times, seems more anti the other candidate for spurious reasons than they are pro their own candidate for real ones.
    Take me, for example, I’ve got nothing against clinton’s tactics and even like them. I’ve got nothing against Obama’s positions and even like them. I actively like edwards and his positions and his tactics. But in the end I’ll cast my vote *for* edwards because I’m casting my vote *against* clinton because someone reminded me on a blog of how much I hate terry macaulliffe. Its not particularly logical. And its sure not related to the morality or otherwise of her “tearing the party apart” which I don’t think this thing does.
    aimai

  • Rob

    aimai,
    You really don’t understand why people think that it was wrong for Clinton to go back on an agreement she freely made, and try to count Michigan’s delegates as her own? An agreement that caused her competitors to withdraw from competition there, and the violation of which would consequently mean that voters who otherwise would have preferred to cast their votes for Edwards or Obama will now be represented by Clinton delegates?
    Seriously, you don’t see what’s wrong with that?

  • jdkbrown

    Amai,
    You see nothing wrong with me having been cheated out of opportunity to have input in the Democratic nomination?
    Do you also see nothing wrong with Republican vote suppression tactics? I really fail to see how this is any different. Please explain it to me.

  • jdkbrown

    Damn. Please overlook that I misspelled your name.

  • Aimai,
    I too am confused by the very intelligent and thoughtful tenor of your comments which nevertheless completely overlook the ethical problem at the heart of all this.
    Neither Ezra or Rob accuse HRC of breaking the law. What she broke was her word. Everyone involved signed off on the agreement that Michigan and Florida would be out of play, for the good of the party. That agreement had serious ramifications on the primary campaigns, since both Michigan and Florida are way more delegate-a-liscious than Iowa or NH.
    Allowing HRC’s name to stay on the ballot was an act of good faith on the part of the DNC, and the Obama and Edwards campaigns. Hillary’s violation of that faith by even suggesting those delegates be seated is deeply dishonorable. It’s also anti-democratic. To dismiss those ethical concerns with a sort of “all’s fair in love in war” approach seems to me to send the message that you are interested in the Democratic party standing for nothing but power.

  • Mike T

    aimai
    I understand your point about the hierarchy of rules and in any other scenario I might agree with you, but this isn’t just any DNC administrative rule we’re talking about. She’s trying to change the way we count the votes after they’ve already been cast, and she’s doing this after she sued the state of Nevada to have caucus sites removed from areas that were likely to vote for Obama. That’s twice now that she has played fast & loose with the rules governing whose vote gets counted.
    The reason I’m so opposed to this is because it smacks of the way the GOP does business, not Democrats. It reminds me of vote caging or voter ID laws or registration drives where only the applications for Republicans get turned in, and it stinks. You’re well within your rights to think this new tactic’s not a big deal, but counting votes in an equitable manner is pretty high up on my hierarchy of rules. I don’t like seeing any Democrat messing around with that.

  • Steve H.

    Steve H is shocked that Clinton announced her intentions?
    Um, aimai, I’d appreciate it if you would refrain from putting words in my mouth or attributing to me a state of mind that I don’t have.
    Because you’re wrong. Sadly, I’m not really shocked that Clinton, after breaching her agreement not to participate in the Michigan primary — an agreement on which both Edwards and Obama relied — is now trying to change the rules to take advantage of that breach. A little disgusted, perhaps, but not shocked.

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