I haven’t had a chance to comment here on the mess with Michigan and Florida and the controversy over whether there should be re-do primaries — or just what the heck to do with the delegates.
My instinct all along is that the DNC never should have said these delegates would not count. The Obama camp of course does not see it that way. And as Jeralyn points out on Talk Left, there seems to be a “fundamental misunderstanding on what the candidates promised and didn’t promise regarding the outcomes of the Florida and Michigan primaries.”
Here is a PDF of the four state pledge, which says “nothing about which delegates will count or not count in Florida and Michigan.”
It says nothing about whether a state’s primary will count or not.
The candidates merely pledged not to campaign in any states holding a primary or caucus before Super Tuesday, other than Iowa, Nevada, New Hampshire and South Carolina.
The four state pledge prohibited “only campaigning” and “fundraising was allowed.”
The exclusion of Michigan and Florida was a penalty imposed by the DNC.
Which brings us to this question posed by Jeralyn today: Why Did Obama Withdraw From the Michigan Primary?
Read Jeralyn’s full post which lays some reasoning on why Obama withdrew from the ballot in Michigan and concludes:
It was Obama’s choice to remove himself from the Michigan ballot. Did he do it for strategic reasons because Hillary was leading by large margins in the polls (Here’s one from October 5 to 7, right before the drop out deadline, showing Hillary 42%, Obama 26%)? If so, why should there be a revote?
I think the DNC should remove the penalty from Michigan and Florida and seat the delegates. In Michigan’s case, Hillary should get the delegates according to her vote total. The other delegates should remain “uncommitted” and vote how they want when they get to the convention.
Obama is making an issue out of this because those delegates from Michigan and Florida help Hillary and hurt him. Maybe he and his campaign should have thought harder about Michigan before withdrawing from the ballot. It’s a mess. Not just for the candidates but for the voters as well. The DNC, Howard Dean and Barack Obama all need to suck it up and seat the damn delegates.