Patterico's Pontifications


MI State-Run Re-Vote a No-Go

Filed under: 2008 Election — DRJ @ 4:48 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

ABC reports that the Michigan Legislature has adjourned without approving a state-run, privately-funded Democratic re-vote:

“What I can tell you is that the idea of a state-run, privately funded primary is dead,” said Liz Boyd, a spokeswoman for Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm who is supporting Clinton.”

This is viewed as a blow for Senator Hillary Clinton’s campaign.

A Democratic spokesperson indicated that a party-run mail-in vote was still possible, but the logistics involved coupled with the Obama campaign’s reluctance makes that unlikely.


7 Responses to “MI State-Run Re-Vote a No-Go”

  1. You know, if I didn’t know better, I’d swear that this is a script for a new comedy show about the race to the Presidency.

    steve miller (0574db)

  2. I predict shortages of popcorn.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  3. Can Dem controlled legislatures accomplish anything positive?

    Another Drew (8018ee)

  4. I don’t have any sympathy for either Florida or Michigan Democrats in this case. The national party spelled out the rules, and the state Democrats pushed through laws concerning the timing of elections to violate the party rules. The local Democrats screwed up. No further tax money should be spent to fix it, and no real claim about unfairness or disenfranchisement should be heard because the people in charge of the party elections in those two states willingly violated party rules.

    Party nomination processes historically have not (until quite recently in most states), and I think should not, be subject to the strict standards of democracy (it used to be smoke filled rooms, the delegates elected by precinct vote of the true party faithful, and not direct election). The party in question should be free to structure the nomination process to come up with the best and most electable party candidate, through a process that is democratic or not, at their choice.

    Parties would be certainly wise to come up with the most broadly popular choice, and democratic election is probably the best way to do that, but that is not necessarily true in all cases. As we have seen in this cycle, we have Kos urging Michigan liberals to cross over to the GOP primary to vote for Romney, and Limbaugh urging conservatives in Texas and Ohio to cross over to vote for Clinton, to derail the perceived leading candidate of the opposing party.

    State funded and run primaries are thus vulnerable to gaming from the other side, or gaming from within. The parties should come up with their candidates whatever way they wish. Let the real democracy come in during the actual general election process, where the parties face one another in the final vote that counts. If people tend to favor a candidate that was nominated in an open and democratic primary, both parties will adopt that system. If people tend to favor a candidate selected by party elders in the smoke filled rooms as their best and most viable candidate, that model will prevail.

    I find it weird in the first place that it is generally accepted that states and local governments should use taxes to fund the bill for party primaries. The Democrats, Republicans, and whatever other serious parties that might emerge should foot the bill for determining their candidates themselves, in whatever process they choose and fund themselves, to field candidates in general elections. It’s only in the general election itself that we should really care about one person one vote, disenfranchisement, and all that other basic democracy stuff.

    Aplomb (770d80)

  5. Well said, Aplomb.

    DRJ (a431ca)

  6. I don’t think it matters. The Obama campaign will tout their delegate lead, and Hillary’s people will spin it that she would have won both Michigan and Florida, had it been allowed. (which is quite possible)

    Depending on how well Obama does after this Church scandal, and whether or not Clinton gets her own scandal, I think the Democratic party wishes their nominee to be the one who can win in November. Period. The winner of the nomination will be retroactively rationalized into first position.

    Apogee (366e8b)

  7. Aplomb, that was the main argument used in Washington via a voter initiative that changed primaries to “all-in, top 2 move on”

    seaPea (75b9b4)

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