Thursday, February 07, 2008

Could this possibly be true?

That Michigan, land that I live in, may have another primary? How can this be? It would cost the financially-strapped state a million dollars. And this Super-Delegate thing is bugging me too.
Forty percent of the delegates to the Dem. convention are Super-Delegates, most of them pledged before Obama was a viable candidate. When did elections in the US start resembling those in Soviet Russia? Oh, I guess about 2000. Or was it always like this?

12 comments:

Christa M. Miller said...

But don't forget, super-delegates can switch. The regular kind can't. Just keep hoping!

pattinase (abbott) said...

Except that since supers are usually party regulars, they may be afraid to risk ire from a future Prez or the Party itself. I just want to see an election where the people's vote determines the winner.
Somehow we're drifting from that. Either the Supreme Court picks them or super delegates or the Electoral College.

Graham Powell said...

Each party can set whatever rules they want for delegate selection. I understand the Republicans used more "winner take all" states to avoid a brokered convention.

(Incidentally, I almost wrote a "borked" convention, which seems appropriate.)

Christa M. Miller said...

Not so sure. Read this op-ed by Peggy Noonan:

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB120241915915951669.html?mod=opinion_main_commentaries

Apparently the Obama campaign is putting pressure on the super-ds from the states he won...

As for the democratic process, though, I do agree. I read a little history at Poynter.org about delegates. I didn't realize they only started after the popular vote let Jimmy Carter into office. After all, that may be the worst travesty of No Child Left Behind: forcing teachers to teach to "standards" that are really rote memory in disguise, rather than the living history that teaches students to think critically and care about what happens in their country.

Chuck said...

What I am hearing is that there will not be another primary election in Michigan. There will either be a caucus or the delegates will be decided at the Michigan Democratic Convention. I also hear that Granholm supports Clinton while Mark Brewer, chair of the Michigan Democratic Party supports Obama. Granholm wants delegates selected at the convention which favors Clinton. Brewer wants to have caucuses which favors Obama. I was a Edwards supporter. Now I'm for Obama. Inspiration trumps experience in behind the scenes arm twisting.

pattinase (abbott) said...

The super delegate responsibility has apparently never been tested in court. So they can vote the way they want in actuality. Whether they'll risk crossing Hillary, who may well be the eventual candidate, is a big if. Especially since they're party regulars and state office holders largely and not the man on the street.

Todd Mason said...

We're not drifting from "the People's Vote determines the winner"...we've never had that. The closest we've gotten to that, not too close, were the 1972 and 1976 primaries and caucuses in the Democratic Party and arguably the 1976 primaries in the GOP.

"Super" delegates were invented to keep another McGovern or Carter win from happening, where someone insurgent manages to make his (or, gasp, her) way past the bosses. Even if, like Carter, they are as blandly conservative as one can possibly want (and notwithstanding Carter's good works since; like Goldwater, not being an actual politician any longer seems to have freed him to do and think aloud sensibly).

pattinase (abbott) said...

Although Carter sure is self-righteous about it. Still he's the best former President ever. The rest have seemed intent mostly on getting richer. I wonder if there ever was a day in the last eight years that George Walker Bush has been proud of his son.

Todd Mason said...

You should hear the recurring "41-43" sketches of Harry Shearer on his commentary, music and comedy show LE SHOW (the numbers refer to their presidential numbering).

www.harryshearer.com

We have had other presidents who've continued to serve in various, usually governmental, capacities...or, as with Theodore Roosevelt and Martin Van Buren, ran again as third party candidates somewhat to the left of their previous administrations (and, of course, dim bulb Millard Fillmore ran to the right of his, but we all know about Him).

Steve Allan said...

The modern usage of primaries, etc. is only about 30 years old. Before that it was the smoke filled rooms. I think the Superdelegates were a compromise so the powers that be wouldn't see all of their power go. But it looks like we'll be back in that room come August - there is going to be a lot of back and forth before a nominee is announced. Even though Hillary has slipped, the superdelegates are keeping her afloat. Unless Obama just dominates with incredible numbers over the next few weeks, we're going to end primary season wth a virtual tie. There will be increased attention on caucus states as they go through their next rounds of caucuses, but this thing isn't going to be settled until the end of the summer. Meanwhile, McCain can rest up for the summer, not worry about spending any campaign money and come out running as November comes. Obama or Hillary (or a combination of) will have to come straight out of the convention and into full press presidential campaign mode without any rest. They'll only have about 9 or 10 weeks to establish themselves as the nominee, while McCain will have established himself as the Republican Nominee by the end of February - about 8 months before the election, about 35 weeks compared to the 9 Hillary/Obama will have.

pattinase (abbott) said...

The good thing could be that it keeps interest on the Dems. And Obama already seems to be speaking to McCain.

pattinase (abbott) said...

The good thing could be that it keeps interest on the Dems. And Obama already seems to be speaking to McCain.