Opinion: Why Michigan Democrats must be seated

The discussion over seating the delegates for Michigan and Florida at the DNC Rules Committee meeting is raging on today.


Carl Levin (above), Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick, Ron Gettelfinger and Debbie Dingell weigh in on “why Michigan Democrats must be seated” in an OP/ED in the Detroit News today:

Our reasoning is as follows: The Jan. 15 primary result was flawed because Sen. Barack Obama took his name off the ballot based on his interpretation of the DNC injunction and his pledge to New Hampshire that he would not campaign in Michigan. The Obama campaign has argued that the primary results should be ignored and the pledged delegates should be apportioned 64/64. The Hillary Rodham Clinton campaign, on the other hand, argues that the votes of 600,000 Democrats in the primary should be honored. Their position is that the pledged delegates should be apportioned 73/55 (Clinton/Obama) in strict accordance with the outcome of the primary.

Both campaigns have some basis for their arguments. At the request of the governor of Michigan, the four of us have worked to find a solution for many months. After determining that no “redo” options were feasible, we recommended that Michigan’s 128 pledged delegates be apportioned 69 to Clinton and 59 to Obama, which splits the difference between the positions of the two campaigns. Our proposal was overwhelmingly adopted by the Executive Committee of the Michigan Democratic Party. This is what we will present the rules committee this morning.

Both Clinton and Obama understand that penalizing Michigan would needlessly and pointlessly wound their candidacy. If the DNC penalizes Michigan, it would just keep this delegate sideshow alive, distracting from the real issues in the campaign. It would legitimize the selective enforcement of our party rules, fly in the face of the statements of both candidates that Michigan’s delegates should be seated with full voting rights, and penalize our candidates and our party, and ultimately our nation, by weakening our nominee’s chances of winning Michigan, a state crucial to winning the White House in November.

Michigan’s full delegation must be seated at the Democratic National Convention with full voting rights.

Read Politico’s brief on Howard Dean’s remarks this morning and stay tuned for the outcome of the meeting.  

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About Pamela Leavey

Pamela Leavey is the Editor in Chief, Owner/Publisher of The Democratic Daily as well as a freelance writer and photographer. Pamela holds a certificate in Contemporary Communications from UMass Lowell, a Journalism Certificate from UMass Amherst and a B.A. in Creative Writing and Digital Age Communications from UMass Amherst UWW.

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One Response to Opinion: Why Michigan Democrats must be seated

  1. Kim says:

    The DNC’s ruling to seat Florida and Michigan with 1/2 of a vote, and arbitrarily hand out delegates is a poor excuse for democracy. I have decided, and I am encouraging others to do the same, to stand by my fellow democrats in Florida and Michigan. Come general election time, I will give 1/2 of my vote to Obama, and the other half to someone else. I know my ballot will be discounted, but that’s nothing new for democrats. Besides, that’s the DNC’s idea of fair. Vote Half and Half!!!!!