Thursday, February 28, 2008

Updated - Maine superdelegate confusion

WE'VE MOVED! Democratic Convention Watch is now at

A small paper in Maine thinks its discovered a scandal in the DNC superdelegate lists:

Two of the eight prominent Democrats appointed by the Democratic National Committee (DNC) to represent Maine as super delegates at the Democratic National Convention aren’t eligible to do so under the DNC’s own residency requirements. Neither former U.S. Sen. George J. Mitchell nor former Maine Governor Kenneth Curtis is a legal resident of Maine, as required by DNC rules stipulating that super delegates must “legally reside in their respective state.”

The DNC defines legal residency through voter registration. Neither Mitchell nor Curtis is registered to vote in Maine. Voter registration records for the Manhattan borough of the city of New York show Mitchell registered to vote there as a Democrat on April 22, 2004. Voter registration records in Sarasota County show Curtis registered to vote in Florida as a Democrat on Feb. 7, 2005.

Under the DNC’s residency requirements, Mitchell could be a member of the New York delegation and Curtis a member of the Florida delegation, but not Maine’s delegation.
Well, lets dispose of Mitchell first. The DNC moved Mitchell to the NY delegation in their latest list, so there is no issue there.
“I’m a registered voter in Florida,” Curtis told The Ellsworth American in a telephone interview, adding that he’s lived year-round in Sarasota for more than two years. “I gave up on winters in Maine. “It really doesn’t matter what state I’m from,” he said. “I am a delegate because of my term as the chairman of the Democratic National Committee. I could just as well attend the convention with the Florida delegation, and, at this point, I’m not 100 percent sure that I will go. I’ll go only if my vote is meaningful.”
Curtis is much more interesting. If he is truly a resident of Florida, then he needs to be moved to the Florida delegation. And if that happens, poof, he vanishes from the superdelegate list, as Florida and Michigan are not currently assigned any delegates, either pledged or unpledged. We will follow up on this.

Update: Curtis has endorsed Clinton, while Mitchell remains uncommitted.

Update II: The DNC has confirmed to us that Curtis has been moved to Florida which means Clinton loses his vote as a superdelegate.


Unknown said...

Can a former DNC chair move to Bermuda and get seated as a Dems Abroad superdelegate? Would her vote then count as only one-half of a superdelegate vote?

IF so, that would mean she'd get half a vote more just for leaving the country entirely rather than staying in Florida.

Oreo said...

Great question Owen.
We'll try to find out for you.
I would think he'd get 1/2 a vote.