Saturdays DNC meeting deciding the voting fate of millions of Americans amounted to nothing more than a publicity stunt aimed at creating the appearance of open communication and fairness within the Democratic Leadership. Saturday’s decision by the DNC came as no surprise to anyone that has kept up on the process, the decision of the DNC was made more than a week ago and DNC paid lawyers made sure to support that decision through a memo released last Tuesday. However, Saturday did serve an opportunity for DNC leadership to create the impression that they were willing to compromise to support the voters.
The question that was debated on Saturday was that of whether the DNC should uphold their rules or should uphold the wishes of the people of Florida and Michigan. The only question that should have been asked is “why hasn’t the DNC established rules that represent the people?”
The DNC and Democratic leadership used the forum Saturday as a political soundstage; making the case for their states, yet following the DNC directive not to damage the party. Statement after statement made during that meeting put the party first, not the voters; and led to nothing more than leaders pointing out the problem and who is to blame for it.
Senator Levin was the sole voice of honesty and integrity during Saturday’s meeting. He did not sugarcoat or deflect from the fact that Michigan Democrats share responsibility for moving up their primary. He made it clear that Michigan has long been overlooked by both parties, suffering years of economic recession, and receiving no attention at a national level. He did not place the blame for Michigan’s decision on anyone else’s shoulders; he pointed out that the DNC had consistently refused Michigan requests to be at the forefront of the primaries; and he pointed out that there was no precedent for the DNC to fully strip a state’s delegation. I commend Senator Levin, he holds the sole distinction as a voice of honesty, fairness, and integrity in Saturday’s hearing.
On the other hand, the DNC and Democratic Leadership of Florida should be ashamed. Florida’s representatives absolutely refused to accept any responsibility for their part in moving up Florida’s primary. In statement-after-statement emerging from Florida leadership and the members of the Rules committee, Democrats painted a picture that their voters were being disenfranchised as a result the Florida Republicans. It is unbelievable that the DNC would use a forum for addressing their internal problems to blame the Republicans for it. I’m surprised that no one blamed Bush. This attempt to create sympathy for the Florida Democratic Leadership was a shame, meant at creating sympathy among Florida voters and attempting to unite the Democratic Party against the evil disenfranchising Republicans. This distraction was a blatant lie and manipulation of the facts.
Was the legislation that moved up the Florida Primary put forth and supported by the Republican Majority in Florida? Yes
Could Florida Democrats have enough votes to block the legislation? NO
But here’s what they haven’t told you:
- The Bill had 24 co-sponsors including 7 Democrats: Mary Brandenburg, Susan Bucher, Martin Kiar, Ari Porth, Yolly Roberson, Franklin Sands, and James Waldman!
- The bill first passed the Florida House Of Representatives on March 21, 2007; the vote: Yeas: 115 Nays: 1 Total Missed: 3
That’s an odd vote considering there are 42 Democrats in the Florida House
The bill was sent to the Senate and was passed on April 27, 2007; the vote:
Yeas: 37 Nays: 2
Are There Only 2 Democrats In The Senate?
The combined bill was then sent back to the House and passed on May 3, 2007, the vote: Yeas: 118 Nays: 0 Missed: 2
- Ok, so the question exists, if Florida Democrats, knowing that they would face DNC sanctions, voted for the bill; how can they now place the blame at the feet of the Florida Republicans? The final vote was unanymous.
Do they just go along with everything that the Republicans do? The vote was unanimous. Florida Democrats 100% supported this bill by voting for it.
- Newsweek and the Times were certain to point out that the Florida Democrats did not have the votes to block the bill. But, again I can find no record of an attempt to block the bill. How can they blame the Republicans when they never attempted to stop the legislation and then voted for it?
- After the bill was passed, the Florida Democratic Party could have elected to make the January primary non-binding and hold a separate binding primary that they would have to pay for. Again, there was no discussion of this until March of this year.
The bottom line is that I do not agree with either the Republican Party or Democratic Party penalizing either of these states. We are a nation built upon state rights and the belief that the will of the people should override party loyalty. The DNC and Obama campaign has made this an issue of upholding rules, yet the DNC broke their own rules when they stripped these States of their delegations. The previous precedent established by the DNC was that the State would not be penalized, but that any candidate campaigning in the state would lose half of their earned delegation. The DNC precedent was never a 50% penalty.
More important is the complete politicization of this issue. The DNC determined weeks ago how they would handle Florida & Michigan, Saturday’s meeting amounted to nothing but a compilation of lies and manipulation of the facts in an effort to appease the voters (by giving them half), create the appearance of equality and unity within the party, and ironically to bring voters in these state back to the Democratic Party by BLAMING THE REPUBLICANS.
Kudos to Fox News for reporting actual news on Saturday rather than carrying 8 hours of a DNC infomercial. Shame on CNN & ObaMSNBC for not questioning the misleading rhetoric stemming from this event. The DNC and Obama Campaign have made one thing clear this election, they are not interested in fixing their disenfranchising primary system; they are not interesting in upholding the will of the people and adopting policies that uphold that will; and they are certainly not interested in taking action that might result in their anointed candidate losing his privileged status.
BOTTOM LINE: The Democratic Leadership brewed this stew; they accept no responsibility for; they are not interested in fixing it; Republicans are not to blame for it; and now they need to sit in.
June 2nd, 2008
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