Wednesday, May 21, 2008

FL & MI By The Numbers

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There are all sorts of scenarios concerning Florida and Michigan. Some recently discussed scenarios include seating all MI/FL pledged delegates with 1/2 vote, (supers at 1/2 or full vote), and a proposal by Michigan Dems propose 69-59 split. We've taken five of the most likely and interesting ones and run the numbers.

The scenarios are:

  1. Do not seat Florida or Michigan. Current Official DNC rules
  2. Seat FL 1/2 vote, MI 69-59 split and supers full vote.
  3. Seat FL/MI all half votes, pledged and supers
  4. FL/MI, pledged half vote, supers full vote
  5. Seat FL & MI based on the elections that have taken place. This scenario is in the left sidebar.
Note that in scenarios 3-5, we assign 18 of the 55 Uncommitted Michigan delegates to Obama. 36 CD-level Uncommitted delegates have been selected, and we've found sufficient sources to place 18 of them in Obama's column. Some, or all, of the other 18, as well as the 19 state-wide Uncommitted delegates which will be picked on June 14, are said to be supporting Obama, but we have not found sufficient sources to add them to Obama's numbers as of now. We have not found any Uncommitted delegates who have said they are supporting Clinton.

We are not endorsing any of these scenarios. We're just providing information so our readers can judge how each scenario will affect the race.

List of Florida and Michigan superdelegates.

Scenario 1: Do not seat Florida or Michigan. Current Official DNC rules
Delegates Available: 4049.0Nomination: 2025.0PD majority: 1627.0

ObamaClinton EdwardsOthers(1)NYA(2)YTV(3)Total
Pledged Delegates(GP)1660.51499.57----863253
Needed for PD majorityClinched!------------
Superdelegates (DCW)323.5282.5--190----796
Total Delegates1984.01782.07190--864049
Delegates Lead202.0-- ----------
Needed to win Nomination41.0243.0------Left276

Scenario 2: FL 1/2 vote, MI 69-59 split and Super full vote.
Delegates Available: 4324.5Nomination: 2162.5PD majority: 1737.0

ObamaClinton EdwardsOthers(1)NYA(2)YTV(3)Total
Pledged Delegates(GP)1660.51499.570--863253
MI Pledged Delegates5969--------128
FL Pledged Delegates34.552.55.5------92.5
Total Pledged Delegates1754.01621.012.50--863473.5
Needed for PD majorityClinched!------------
Superdelegates (DCW)323.5282.5--190----796
FL & MI Superdelegates1015--30----55
Total Delegates2087.51918.512.5220--864324.5
Delegates Lead169.0-- ----------
Delegates needed to win Nomination75.0244.0------Left306

Scenario 3: FL/MI all half votes, pledged and supers
Delegates Available: 4233.0Nomination: 2117.0PD majority: 1705.0

ObamaClinton EdwardsOthers(1)NYA(2)YTV(3)Total
Pledged Delegates(GP)1660.51499.57----863253
MI Pledged Delegates11.036.5--16.5----64
FL Pledged Delegates34.552.55.5------92.5
Total Pledged Delegates1706.01588.512.516.5--863409.5
Needed for PD majorityClinched!------------
Superdelegates (DCW)323.5282.5--190----796
FL & MI Superdelegates57.5--15----27.5
Total Delegates2034.51878.512.5221.5--864233.0
Delegates Lead156.0-- ----------
Delegates needed to win Nomination82.5238.5------Left307.5

Scenario 4: FL/MI, pledged half vote, supers full vote
Delegates Available: 4260.5Nomination: 2130.5PD majority: 1705.0

ObamaClinton EdwardsOthers(1)NYA(2)YTV(3)Total
Pledged Delegates(GP)1660.51499.57----863253
MI Pledged Delegates11.036.5--16.5----64
FL Pledged Delegates34.552.55.5------92.5
Total Pledged Delegates1706.01588.512.516.5--863409.5
Needed for PD majorityClinched!------------
Superdelegates (DCW)323.5282.5--190----796
FL & MI Superdelegates1015--30----55
Total Delegates2039.51886.012.5236.5--864260.5
Delegates Lead153.5-- ----------
Delegates needed to win Nomination91.0244.5------Left322.5

Scenario 5: Seat FL & MI based on the elections that have taken place.
(Obama gets 22 of 55 MI uncommitted).
Delegates Available: 4417.0Nomination: 2209.0PD majority: 1783.5

ObamaClinton EdwardsOthers(1)NYA(2)YTV(3)Total
Pledged Delegates(GP)1751.51677.51833--863566
Needed for PD majority32.0106.0----------
Superdelegates (DCW)333.5297.5--220----851
Total Delegates2085.01975.018253--864417
Delegates Lead110.0------------
Delegates needed to win Nomination124.0234.0------Left339
Last Updated: 05/31/2008 5:00 PM(EST)

Notes: The scenarios and table are sorted from the highest candidate's lead to the lowest.

Others(1): Include Unknown, Uncommitted & No endorsements yet
NYA(2): Not Yet Assigned.
YTV(3): Not Yet Voted.


kitchin said...

Might be worth considering the particular scenario described in the rules, which admittedly can be changed. I just wrote it up, so I will just link to it.

In particular, round down halves and add 5 superdels only.

Joseph Giannasio said...

One likely option you left out would be Seat FL based on the elections that have taken place, as both were on the ballot, seat MI 69-59 split and Super full vote.

Unknown said...

Does anyone actually have the text of the rumored 3 proposals that are supposed to appear on the RBC's agenda?

From what I understand (which is based upon VERY flimsy information) the RBC isn't going to be putting forth it's own proposals, or the proposals of Hillary or Barack. It is going to rule on the requests that are presented to it by the states.

So far (again, based upon VERY flimsy information) I've only heard of the states asking for 1/2 or 3/4 of their delegates to count. And nothing about how they would be assigned.

Sorry to add FUD. But I'm hoping somebody actually knows how all this will go down.

Yousri said...

I believe that the ideal and just solution is:

“Seat the pledged delegates of MI & FL with 1/2 vote each on a 50-50 split among the 2 candidates, and the superdelegates should have no vote at all.”

You can read the whole explanation here

This is my own personal opinion.

rgzuber said...

I noticed that you removed some pledged delegates from both Obama and Clinton (1 from Obama and 3 from Clinton). Was this to bring the numbers into alignment with Green Papers? Any idea why they removed them?

As always, thanks for the great work.

Yousri said...


You're right. It was updated to reflect that GP did not allocate all the pledged delagtaes yet.

But I think it will be either 30-22 or 31-21.

We will see.

Amot said...

GP has updated their numbers. In order to avoid mistakes this time they decided to agree upon partial results - 29/19 Obama/Clinton for OR. I don't say that is bad policy but IMHO they are too conservative! The results are final and well, they fit my projection, given 1 hour after the polls were closed. What we expected GP to do today is to update to 31/21, resulting in +2 delegates Obama, +2 delegates Clinton!

Anonymous said...

THANK YOU!!!! DCW, you present the data much more clearly than anybody else out there!!!! Didn't realize Obama will end up ahead even if FL gets everything and he gets zero out of MI.

The sad thing about HRC is how she's changed her position based on what was important to her.

Originally, FL and MI were up a creek, and it was all about Iowa.
Then The big states.
Then the SDs.
Then the battle ground states.
Then FL and MI.
Then it was unfair because he outspent her (because he received more money).
Now all that matters is the popular vote. Forget the fact that caucus states by default have fewer votes and Obama won almost every single caucus.
Oh yeah, and the system is sexist against her too!
Aaaaaaaand, Obama was playing the race card by making WJC bring up Jesse Jackson!

I had sympathy for HRC during the hypocritical impeachment hearings, but after seeing the Clintons try to twist this every way they could, how they lied about how much money they brought in after 4/22 (by a factor of 10!), how they disrespected their base who'd been loyal to them for 16+ years, and how they've used people like Ferraro and McAuliffe to spout complete FUD to the press about Obama... The Clintons have finally revealed to the world that they are no Kennedy's, but let's hope that the Obama's are!

Chris said...

Most news outlets show a 13-8 split in favor of Hillary Clinton among declared members of the Rules Committee. But the Obama website indicates that Rules Committee member Jerome Wiley-Segovia has endorsed Obama too. Does anyone know whether this is accurate?

Yousri said...

FL & MI By The Numbers table has been updated with the new GP numbers for OR:
Sen. Obama - 31
Sen. Clinton -21

Sharon said...

Your Oregon numbers are wrong. Obama was given 32 and Clinton 20 per Oregon's official site.
Don't know how to link but here is the address:

Sharon said...

Sorry--didn't get all that address on

Yousri said...

Thank you for the information.
The article was printed/published at 4:00 pm, before all the votes were counted.
We use Green Papers for our source for Pledged delagates, and they have the latest count from the election officials of OR.

bluedogdem said...

Only acceptable rule change "after the game is almost over" is a change which does not harm current standing of either candidate. Obama has won a pledged delegate majority and by latest DCW count needs 61 delegates for nomination hence any RCB solution must keep Obama at 61. Thus YOUSRI proposal is only fair solution. Anything else punishes a candidate and the Clinton protests will pale in comparison to the outrage that will come from the Obama camp if RCB steals the nomination from him.

PS: The Clintons have got to learn (1) not to try to change the rules in the ninth inning and, (2) not to be such poor loosers.

page in Jax said...

I don't understand the concern over "a change which does not harm the current standing of either candidate". In all the scenarios BO stills leads in PDs and overall. So why wouldn't he agree to any of those scenarios?

And does the DNC RBC care what the candidates themselves think? If BO pitches a fit over FL and MI when it does not change his lead, wouldn't that just show poor character on his part?

sdf said...

Of course the final several scenarios leave open the question of the 55 uncommitted delegates in Michigan -- that is, they will in effect become additional superdelegates, although the assumption is that they will lean toward Obama.

It will be interesting to see how the May 31st meeting goes, especially knowing that it will be open to the media. Hopefully it will not prove an additional embarrassment for the Democratic Party.

bluedogdem said...

What is the end product of the May 31st RBC meeting? A recommendation or a decision? If just a recommendation who is it made to? And if a decision, who is an appeal of that decision taken to? And when might any appeal be heard? Thanks

Kennyb said...


I believe it is a decision that can be appealed to the Convention Credentials Committee in Denver. Their decision, in turn, can be appealed to the Convention floor for a vote. Then it's knives, brass knuckles and pepper spray.

Pelaton said...

Just out of curiosity, when, why, and who nixed the option of a re-vote in Florida and Michigan. I missed that chapter. This all seems so simple to resolve: a re-vote and whoever wins, wins. Just pick one!

Kennyb said...


One of the Michigan proposals (the "Gang of Four" Proposal is to give Clinton 69 pledged delegates and Obama 59, allowing all 128 pledged delegates, plus Michigan's 29 (28?) superdelegates, to be seated. HRC opposes this proposal, which would seat all of Michigan's delegation.


The Gang of Four are U.S. Rep. Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick, United Auto Workers President Ron Gettelfinger, U.S. Sen. Carl Levin and Democratic National Committee member Debbie Dingellm appointed by Gov. Granholm to come up with a proposal to present for approval by the MDP, which it has.

The Joel Ferguson proposal, opposed by the Gang of Four, was to seat the delgates in accordance with the primary results (73-55), but give pledged delegates 1/2 vote. Supers get a full vote. I imagine under this scenario the uncommitted delegates would have indeed have been (at least nominally) unpledged. The Michigan Democratic Party website says the Ferguson has agreed to support the MDP's plan, though, and withdraw his appeal (

The Jon Ausman (a former Kucinich supporter) proposal in Florida is the same as Ferguson's: Allocation in accorance with the primaries and the Fla. Dem. Exec. Comm. appointments (129 HRC - 83 OHB), but 1/2 vote for pledged, a full vote for supers.

Stacy said...

I was just wondering:

The Rules Committee seems to favor Clinton. This isn't the Credentials Committee, right?
Does a list exist which contains the members who have been selected for the Credentials Committee by each state? That seems to be the group that will make the final determination...unless the Rules Committee simply lets the elections stand "as is".

If that were to happen, is there any information about who MI's 55 uncommitted pledged delegates are and who they support?

jpsedona said...

State Senate Minority Leader Steve Geller of FL is filing suit to seat FL delegation in full. I don't see how this is different than Bill Nelson's suit related to the FL delegation.

Geller files federal lawsuit in an attempt to get Florida delegates seated

Stacy said...

According to an article on this web site, MDP hasn't released a list of uncommitted delegates. Will they have to release a list on May 31?

Would the 69/59 proposal bind the "59" to vote for Obama, or would they be free to change their pledge at the last minute, a kind of Clinton Trojan horse?

LindaS said...

page in jax said:
"If BO pitches a fit over FL and MI when it does not change his lead, wouldn't that just show poor character on his part?"

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA--I'm having a laughing fit myself over this statement! You clearly haven't been watching the Clintons in this primary, have you? :-)

Bruce Johnson said...

What is Clinton's rationale for rejecting the 69-59 split? That gives her 54% of the delegates -- she won 55% of the popular vote when she was the only major candidate on the ballot.
The other, under reported fact, is that because everyone agreed that the votes wouldn't be counted, slightly less than 600,000 democrats voted in the primary. In a year of record turn outs, that is a very small number.

jpsedona said...

Oreo / Matt,

Do you know if there will be any TV coverage of the RBC meeting??? This seems like something that CSPAN would cover but given the intense interest in the results, are they going to allow the meeting to be televised?

Matt said...

I think I read somewhere that camera would be allowed. If it's a slow news day I would expect some live coverage, especially of any decision.

BobinMichigan said...

A Michigan re-do primary was killed by the Michigan Constitution (which prohibits private funding of elections) and by the County Clerks who effectively said there was no way for them to run a short-notice primary because of the Michigan school elections in May (voting machines and ballot boxes have to be sequestered for a period of time to allow for recounts and challenges).

A Michigan caucus to replace the primary was killed by the Clinton campaign and pro-Clinton superdelegates.

The lower Democratic turnout in Michigan was because a lot of Michigan Dems crossed over to make trouble in the Republican primary, knowing their vote wouldn't count in the Democratic primary. Also, write-in ballots for Obama were all disqualified.

There is a grassroots rule challenge pending from Michigan Democratic voters which would follow the rules, seat Michigan delegates based on county caucuses with 1/2 vote, and disqualify Michigan superdelegates who created this mess.

Yousri said...

FL & MI By The Numbers has been updated with 2 Edwards' NH delegates moving to Obama and today's endorsements.

Kimberly said...

For what it's worth, it wouldn't surprise me if Clintonians pushed for seating pledged delegates in FL and MI in full and offering the compromise of seating half the supers. The advantages are that "every vote counts" in this scenario and the state committees still receive their punishment. I've roughly worked out the math involved, and such a solution would make it possible for Clinton to win enough of the remaining delegates.

Take note, however, of what happened in the 1912 Republican primary election. Go, Bull Moose Party!

Pelaton said...

To BobinMichigan: Thanks for the explanation. No where have I seen any of that. That settles Michigan; now what about Florida? Anyone? I look forward to seeing what the RBC does that will matter....then there are the other 700 something unpledged delegates (AKA Super delegates)...and what THEY do. The plot thickens.

tmess2 said...

Since the two campaigns don't seem to be reaching an agreement, the most likely result of the RBC meeting seems to be a variation on scenario 3.

While not completely fair (given the way that the vote went down in Michigan), it seems to be something that the two states and the Obama campaign should be able to live with if the Obama campaign receives sufficient guarantees about the 19 delegates still to be chosen in Michigan (and is sufficiently confident in the 36 already chosen).

It would be less of a penatly than the one provided for in Rule 20C.

One possible solution to give Obama sufficient guarantee would be to treat the remaining 19 as Obama delegates but the Clinton folks seem likely to object to that solution.

However, given the fact that the Michigan Party told the supporters of Obama, Edwards, Biden, and Richardson that they could express support for their candidate by voting for uncommitted, the Clinton campaign is on shakier ground if the solution is treat these delegates as jointly belonging to the four campaigns. One way of doing that would be to give all four the right of review on the uncommitted delegation and requiring 3 of the 4 or all 4 to object to a person running for one of those slots before that person is excluded. Such a procedure would give sufficient assurances to the Obama campaign to allow an "as-is" delegation to be seated.

Yousri said...

FL & MI By The Numbershas been updated with the new GA and WY Add-ons endorsements.

Yousri said...

"FL & MI By The Numbers" has been updated with AK Add-on.
Also GP has adjusted AK Pledged Delegates numbers:
Sen. Obama 10
Sen. Clinton 3

Wolle said...

i have a question:

Are the former Edwards pledged delegates and the Clinton-to-Obama-Switcher included in this numbers?

I think, that the Edwards delegates should count as additional superdelegates and not as new Obama-pledged-delegates.
And think about the mess if everything goes wrong for Obama (Florida seated with all pledged delegates and his delegates from Michigan run as unpledged delegates) and he looses the pledged delegate race by one delegate...but then he wins it because some Clinton-delegates switch to Obama. (btw i am interested in the Pelosi-club reaction in such a scenario...*g*)

If he ends with the most pledged delegates (very likely to happen) it's no problem to add the other pledged delegates.

Wolle said...

btw: of course the Edwards delegates must be excluded of the pledged delegate numbers too. So the needed number to win the PD majority declines too.

There are still missing 86 pledged delegates from MT, PR and SD. So if Obama comes out with more than a 86 delegate lead after the Florida/Michigan-solution, he will win the pledged delegate race.

If he leads with more than 31 after PR, he will win the delegate race.

And if he still leads after MT and SD, he will be the winner.

page in Jax said...

Since it doesn't seem to bother anyone, when a PD or SD switches from Clinton to Obama, I expect it won't bother you when the reverse happens. Because this race is so close, there is no clear mandate from the voters, so the delegates must decide.

I predict the RBC will decide to seat the FL/MI delegates in proportion to how the votes were cast, either full delegates or half. As a Florida Democrat, I feel this is reasonable.

Then after June 3rd, the SDs and probably some PDs will switch to Clinton, because it's about electability! Take a look at the EV predictions and it's clear that Clinton can beat McCain and Obama cannot.

Unknown said...

Do the Uncommitted delegates (in any state) count as pledged delegates even though they are not committed to a candidate? I know that they essentially act as superdelegates but I am sure that they would not count in that number either. It would be helpful to see the Uncommitted category seperately.

Also, I don't see how Bill Clinton comes to the conclusion that neither candidate will get a majority of pledged delegates if FL and MI are seated. I guess John Edwards' delegates are the spoiler. Considering that more than half of his delegates have pledge to Obama since his endorsement, how much of a spoiler is he really? It would be helpful if your tables painted that scenario as well.


Unknown said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mike said...

Just as the DCW team has put aside bias towards HC or BO, the Rules committee should be able to do so, in the interest of te party. A decision was made that by the DNC that MI/FL will not count, and based on that the nomination battles were fought in the states. None of the candidates made the rules, and one candidate fully complied while the other tried to exploit the punishment for her political gain, after falling way behind in the delegate race.

The goal of the rule committee should not be to pacify and reward noncompliance, but simply not to disenfrancise the MI/FL voters. The fairest deal is to assume that the elections in these states have not taken place, sit all the pledge delegates 50/50 and no super delegates, as proposed by youri. This is a fair deal and both candidates should have no choice but accept, since it maintains their current standings. Definitely, HR will not like it, but the rule change is less of her but more for th FL/MI voters.

sleepy9112 said...

The question that I keep asking over and over to all who will hear is if Senator Clinton can't beat a newbie like Barack Obama within her own party, how in God's name is she to beat John McCain? She will no longer have the hard working class white vote which will tend to lean toward McCain. She will not have the black vote, which believes she has dissed Senator Obama, she has lost part of the female vote who are embarrased with her win at any cost stance and surely the male vote will prefer a man's man over her to a large degree. Where pray tell will she get her base? Oh yeah, from the middle aged feminists led by Geraldine Ferraro. God luck Hillary.

Robert in MN said...

Matt, Here is what I found for the 9th district in MI. Perhaps put a link on you home page article where you want this information posted.

This site gives the names of the 9th district Dems in MI:

Here is how they break down:

Catherine Martin (Uncommitted UAW member)
Doris Toney (Obama)
Aldo Vagnozzi (Obama)

Robert in MN said...

Here is a site that lists the names of all the delegates from MI:

Yousri said...

"FL & MI By The Numbers" has been updated with the new HI endorsements.

tmess2 said...

If you count the Edwards delegates and the uncommitted delegates as still belonging to Edwards and uncommitted (and the Clinton defectors as still belonging to Clinton):

Obama has clinched the pledged delegate majority under the current rules (1646.5 with a majority being 1627.5)

Obama has clinched a plurality of pledged delegates under a rule that seats the Florida and Michigan Delegates at a half-vote (1681.5 to Clinton's 1590.5 with 86 delegates still remaining -- barring further changes in the caucus states)

To clinch a plurality under a circumstance that seats all delegates, Obama would need to pick up 26 of the remaining 86 delegates (a number less than those estimated under most worst-case scenarios -- again barring changes in the remaining caucus states).

I do not know for the Pelosi delegates how defecting delegates or the commitments of delegates formerly pledged to candidates who have dropped out or to uncommitted play into their calculation. (To the best of my knowledge, none of them have spoken on that aspect of the issue).

The problem with excluding changes by Edwards and Clinton delegates is where do you exclude them (as well as Richardson, Biden, Dodd, etc. delegates). In the convention states, particularly Iowa, the final pledged delegate count differes from the initial estimates because of changes at the county or congressional district levels. You could create a very, very complex chart that would have one line item for initial "first-determining step" pledged delegates; a second line for pick-ups between first step and ultimate selection in caucus states, and another line for post selection changes. For purposes of determining the current position of the candidates, those details aren't necessary and matter more to statistical geeks like me than to most people following the election.

Wolle said...

@ tmess2:"The problem with excluding changes by Edwards and Clinton delegates is where do you exclude them."

1)Edwards' pledged delegates are pledged to him and not to Obama. Edwards is out of the race and so they can freely decide whom to give their votes. Even if they endorse a candidate, they are not pledged to him (or her). So they shouldn't count as pledged delegates.

2)I think that defectors are a big problem. They were not elected to have a vote for their own, but to represent the voters of their district or their states. If a pledged delegate switched to another candidate, he betrays his voters who have voted him/her to vote for their candidate at the convention. It doesn't matter if the race is over but in this situation it is a big problem. And i repeat:Imagine the mess, if such defectors decide the pledged delegate race...

Yousri said...

I believe that Edwards' pledged delegates, who switched from Edwards to Obama, have done so by co-ordination between Edwards, Obama and the Pledged Delegates themselves.

Edwards has released them, and I believe he personally talked with many, if not all, especially SC delegates, and asked them to endorse Obama. There was a news article that mentioned a conference call between Edwards and his supporter in SC.


Wolle said...


I didn't say that they shouldn't count; but they are not pledged Obama delegates. They should count like superdelegates.

Yousri said...

I see your point.
But every news organization including AP, CNN, CBS, NBC, ABC, NYT, DNC and all others are counting them as Pledged Delegates, not superdelegates.

Pelaton said...

....and you really believe what those MSM tell you? They have the pulpit, but not all the facts and they are certainly not objective. I quit watching any of them except The News Hour with Jim Lehrer on PBS. The other networks hire "experts" and "strategists" who blab on and on and simply offer advice on how to win along with their opinions ....and we all have one of those. The hosts of the "news" shows are not very objective, either, by the way.
CNN, in particular, just recently was forced to at least acknowledge that the number of delegates needed was potentially 2210 - not the 2026 John King used repeatedly on his magic map; but for months his analyses and projections of a winner were based on his "finish line" of 2026. Just driving his point home day after day. We, out here in the provinces, can tally on a daily basis the pledged, unpledged, the switched, released, add-on, Florida, Michigan, Super and any other delegate and feel good about our abilities to keep up; but the fact remains: Obama has not won the nomination; nor has Clinton; and neither should be acting like it. That is the Audacity of Audacity. We have 3 more primaries, Florida and Michigan to be settled, and over 700 Super delegates yet to weigh in. Oh, and let's not leave out the Convention. That's what a convention is for...its not a coronation, it is a convention. If this was an obvious runaway election for either candidate,it would be different; it isn't.

tmess2 said...

Wolfe, I think you missed part of my point about defecting delegates.

Delegates in caucus states are "pledged" at each stage of the process. Why does it matter if the defection (or failure to attend in some cases) occurred at the County Convention, the District Convention, the State Convention, or National Convention.

Keeping a separate line item for such occurrences would make for a much messier chart when talking about the over-all delegate picture. If you want that information, it is available at the Green Papers in all its messy permutations (but you have to go inside each state's process)

tmess2 said...

Pelaton, the number is 2026 until the DNC changes the number. The rules of the convention and the decision of the RBC are the rules of the convention and the decision of the RBC. If the RBC adjourns without a decision, the number stays at 2026. If they make a decision, the new number will be whatever the RBC decides.

For all the faults of the main stream media, you can't blame them for reporting what the current requirement is as the current requirement. The number needed for nomination hasn't been 2210 since September when Harold Ickes voted to change the number.

Ted P said...

Supplemental to tmess2's point above, the number of delegates required to clinch the nomination has been 2026 or 2025 since 2007, well before the primaries started.

As of this writing, Obama requires just 49 delegates to clinch the nomination unless the RBC decides to change the rules of the game at the eleventh hour. Since Obama has a majority of pledged delegates under the current benchmark whatever the outcome of the last three primaries, then absent any change in the rules Obama is guaranteed the Pelosi Club's 7 delegates. Even if none of the 7 remaining Edwards delegates endorse Obama this week, at his current pace Obama will pick up another 16 or so superdelegates prior to May 31. That will put the magic number at 26, and under any scenario for the last three primaries Obama will pick up more than 26 pledged delegates. That means that Obama will have effectively clinched the nomination by the time the RBC meets, and I believe the RBC will think long and hard about coming to any decision that overturns the result reached after five months of primaries.

Another metric that cannot be ignored in this calculus is the overwhelming preference for Obama amongst superdelegates who have recently endorsed. In May to date, Obama has captured more than 80 per cent of the nearly 100 supers who have endorsed. At this rate, Obama will have accumulated an additional 160 supers by shortly after June 3, rendering even the wildest pro-Clinton result at the RBC redundant.

Still, the prospect that the RBC would overturn the result reached after five months of primaries on Saturday on the basis of a Stalinesque vote that was known not to be an election and, in the case of Michigan, had only one candidate's name on the ballot, is unthinkable and must be discouraged in the strongest of terms.

Although I am a supporter of leaving the initial decisions in place, on the ground that no meaningful outcome can be derived from votes that were known and acknowledged by the Clinton campaign not to count, where no election campaigning was permitted and where in Michigan only one of the candidates' names was on the ballot, the seating of the delegates from those states at the convention in the interests of political expediency can be accomplished by allocating them to the two candidates on a 50/50 basis. This outcome is not included in the scenarios above but appears to me to be the only way that such a fundamentally flawed vote can be allocated in a way that is fair to both candidates and the electorate, many of whom did not vote in reliance on the non-binding nature of the contests.

PastorGene said...

Most of us have been thinking of how many delegates Obama needs to wrap up the nomination. I got to figuring how many Clinton would need, according to the numbers as shown here.

Even with FL and MI, if she gets everything she wants and Obama gets nothing, and her fairy godmother comes, etc., she would still need 237 delegates to reach the required 2209 under that scenario. Using CNN's delegate calculator, even if she wins Puerto Rico by 60% to Obama's 40%, she will still come out with a maximum of about 46 delegates from the remaining contests. That would leave a need for 191 more. In other words, she would have to win at least 191 of the remaining 231 superdelegates, or about 83%. Even if she should somehow pick up some Edwards delegates, that only throws 18 more into the mix. She may think she can snag some of the MI "uncommitted," which would be directly contrary to the will of the voters, who in an election with two choices, Clinton and not-Clinton, chose not-Clinton. Besides, it appears that most of those "uncommitted" delegates being chosen by MI are turning out to be Obama supporters. And given the fact that, in spite of all her arguments and spin, the superdelegates continue streaming toward Obama, her getting 83% of those that remain seems very, very unlikely. Thus far, they are not buying her arguments.

So, given the extremely unlikely nature of this all being accomplished for her, she could only be hoping that Obama can't quite reach the requisite number and in a "brokered" convention, she could bargain, beg, and steal delegates away from Obama. I really don't think the superdelegates would let it come to that.

So all in all, the "logic" of her argument at this point is that the remaining superdelegates will all in one mass decide to disregard the pledged delegate results entirely and coronate her instead, based on her dubious argument of more "electability."

I'm a San Antonio Spurs fan. Imagine if the NBA had decided to disregard the Spurs' 4-3 game win over the New Orleans Hornets and let New Orleans play the Lakers, based on their belief that NO was the stronger team. Imagine how that would go over.

Now sure, that's just sports--not nearly as important as electing a President. But imagine the repercussions among the African American community--a key constituency among the Democratic Party, if they perceive this nomination as stolen from Obama, after he has won the pledged delegate majority by a substantial margin. Does Hillary honestly believe they will turn out and vote for her in November under those circumstances?

PastorGene said...

Hillary Clinton argues that she is winning the "popular vote." That argument is false because it requires including Michigan, where Obama's name was not even on the ballot, while giving him no credit for the "uncommitted" votes, of which a large portion were voting indirectly for him in the only way they could. It also does not count the caucus states at all. So basically, if you invent new math and change the rules for counting enough, you can eventually construct a scenario under which Clinton leads in the popular vote.

She argues that she has won the "electoral votes" and "big states." These arguments are false because they make the assumption that primary votes against an opponent within the party = general election votes against the other party's candidate, which is a false assumption. Many of the states won by Hillary in the primary (CA, MA, NJ, NY, etc.) will still vote for Obama in the general election. Most of these have voted consistently for the Democratic candidate for the last several elections. Some of the states won by Hillary (KY, WV, IN, etc.) would vote for McCain over her. In fact, in some of these states, Republicans crossed over to help her win them (Rush Limbaugh's "Operation Chaos").

Hillary argues she is more “electable,” based on a snapshot of polling results that have fluctuated significantly and cannot reasonably be argued as showing a consistent result that she would win more electoral votes against McCain than Obama. A few weeks ago, the polling results were different. A few weeks from now, they will be different again. In fact, when the intra-party bickering ends and the Democratic Party unites behind a nominee, there will no doubt be a significant boost to Obama’s numbers vs. McCain. This will especially be true once Obama is able to give undivided attention to the general election campaign against McCain as “Bush’s third term.”

The bottom line is that it is more than obvious at this point that Hillary cannot overcome Obama's lead, even with MI and FL included under the exact terms she desires, which is not going to happen anyway. And her arguments directed toward the superdelegates are not working, as the steady stream of these toward Obama continues.

So all she is doing is continuing to stir up discontent and disunity in the party. It is not because she is still running, and hardly anyone is really pressuring her to drop out before the final primaries--certainly not Obama. Most certainly do not want the fight to go on to the convention in August but to be decided in June, to allow sufficient time to be in a general election campaign against McCain, who has been in that mode for months already. And the big thing is that she needs to stop stirring up discontent and hard feelings by claiming to be a victim, claiming that sexism is responsible for her losing, and agitating the people of FL and MI just to try to gain advantage in a losing cause. Those delegates will be seated, though it will not change the outcome of the race. But she is stirring up hard feelings among the voters of those states and among her own supporters with the charges of sexism and victimization. In other words, it is not her staying in the race until the finish (the final primaries) that is dividing the party. It is the inflammatory things she is saying. This whole FL and MI bit is very hypocritical on her part anyway, since she agreed with these delegates not being seated when the action was taken (when she wanted to be on the good side of Iowa and NH voters) and only changed her stance when she saw that it could work to her advantage.

c_b said...

Just when you thought it couldn't get any weirder...

Clinton surrogate Lanny Davis had put out "A proposed solution for Fla. and Mich." in Politico here.

After presenting a series of old and new arguments (which I don't think I can summarize without bias) proposes that in Michigan:

1) Clinton gets the 73 delegates based on her vote.

2) The 57 Uncommitted (presumably including add-ons) delegates be split either:

a) based on statewide polls
b) "more generous to Obama" 50-50 (with tie-breaker to Clinton).

My opinion - a ploy to make Scenario 5 look like a reasonable compromise.

Much more I could say about it, but there's way too much flaming already.

PastorGene said...

You know, I wonder if Pelaton's mention of over 700 superdelegates to weigh in is one of Clinton's talking points. That would mean she is disregarding endorsements and holding out to try to change these votes at the convention. Never mind the fact that to date, not one delegate has switched from Obama to Clinton, though several have switched the other way. So even if Obama picks up enough superdelegate endorsements to seal up the nomination in June, she still may not concede.

It's kind of scary that there seem to be several indications that Clinton wants to carry her fight all the way to the convention. The Republicans' mouths must really be watering over that. If the division of the party continues all the way to the convention, and there are fights at the convention over rules, etc., in August--just a few months before the general election, that's almost handing this election over to the Republicans. There just won't be time to undo the damage--to say nothing of the damage of not having a unified and unifying, positive and upbeat convention itself, which typically provides the nominee a boost in the polls.

I can half-way buy the spin that this closely contested election has energized rather than divided the party, except that over the past month or two there has been a hardening of feelings by Clinton supporters, saying in increasing numbers that they will not support the nominee unless it's Clinton. But I don't see any way at all you can spin a divided convention into something positive and energizing, especially given the racial and gender divides and the strong feelings those evoke.

I hear people like David Gergen and Paul Begala say that Hillary will gracefully support the party's nominee, whether or not she is it. And she sometimes says that herself. I hope that's the case, but so much that she is saying and doing, even when it has become obvious that she will not win the nomination, seems to contradict that sentiment.

At this point, I'm truly wondering if Clinton's strategy is to wreak enough havoc that Obama will lose to McCain due to a divided party, so that she can come back in 2012, claiming, "I told you so, that Obama wouldn't win. Now you need to nominate me." If she does that, then hopefully her future with the Democratic Party will be shattered.

There is also some indication the Clintons are going to try to force Obama to choose Hillary as his running mate. That is regretable not only because of the strained relationship between them, not only because she would mobilize the Republican base to vote against her and contradict Obama's message of change from the old politics, but also because Obama needs someone who brings some real national security credentials to the ticket and who possibly could bring in a swing state. But he may end up having to offer it to her just to keep from alienating her supporters. That's a sad and tragic way to do business.

ahoff48 said...

I can't stand the spin. Lannie Davis is always exceedingly partisan, and his logic leaves a lot to be desired. The most important thing is the delegates. I just hope the delegates keep coming Obama's way.

Pelaton said...

One of Clinton's talking points is precisely the delegates -the ones that come from each state and the ones that come from holding a power position. The first should vote the way the state did and the other does not necessarily have to do that.She is saying at least finish the primary season and let the remaining states vote.I am not speaking of Florida and Michigan, but she does speak to the FL/MI issue being resolved. The 700+ super delegates I mentioned are free to choose whichever candidate they want to. If super delegates were bound to their state vote; then Ted Kennedy should change and so should Bill Richardson - just to name the two with the highest profile. There are others.
Each made his choice and made it public. That is as it should be; but other super delegates have remained silent and that too is as it should be....if that is how they want to handle their charge. They are free to choose either candidate. I am sure they will wait and make an informed decision after the RBC and DNC have made a judgement on the issues before them. To address the point of MSM and the 2026 number...I simply pointed out that they made it "in stone" that 2026 was the final number. The End. Granted, it is what they were and are working with presently; however, in all fairness, they could have said all along that the number had the potential to change, depending on the DNC decision. They didn't; which gave the impression that this was all over before Pennsylvania and certainly before Montana, South Dakota and Puerto Rico voted; therefore, Obama should just go ahead and search for his VP, hold his Iowa delegate majority party; and muscle his way into the controversy between Bush, McCain and others as if he is, indeed, the nominee. He isn't. Again, if Obama was the "runaway, hands down" choice that his fans have purported, we would not be crunching these itty bitty numbers by the minute. As for her popular vote theory. The popular-vote-wins theory did not wash with Bush/Gore; and it won't here, but it does matter when the "popluar" vote is in Ohio, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Kentucky or the so called swing states; I think it will matter to the super delegates.

PastorGene said...

Pelaton, stating that the superdelegates should go the way their state went contradicts Hillary Clinton's many, many statements that the superdelegates should be free agents rendering their own judgment--just one more example of her continuing to try to move the goalpost.

As for Obama supposedly doing something wrong by "acting like the nominee" and starting the VP process and other general election campaigning, unfortunately he does not have the luxury of time to wait until Hillary decides it's over to begin these processes. John McCain has been in a general election mode for months now. The Democratic nominee is already way behind. Some of these things just can't be accomplished in a few weeks. If Hillary Clinton has any concern about that, she would certainly be free to start her own VP selection process and her own general election campaign. But in any case, if the Democratic Party is to have any hope of winning against McCain and the Republicans, the general election campaign, and some of the processes of preparation for it, CANNOT WAIT any longer.

Besides, even many Hillary Clinton supporters have now admitted that she is too far behind to catch up, and Obama will be the nominee. The primaries and the process can continue to play out, but the general election campaign must begin.

And about John King and others using 2026 as the number to nominate, I agree that until the rules are changed, that is still the rule. It's too much for Clinton supporters to expect the news media to run the numbers for every possible scenario. They go with what they have before them. It's not their job to do Clinton campaign spin for her. She has Lanny Davis, Terry McAuliffe, and Harold Wolfson, among others, to do that. She does at least seem to have Wolf Blitzer in her corner--along with Fox News. (Of course, Fox--basically a Republican propaganda machine--just wants to help nominate her so that the Republicans can beat her.)

Anonymous said...

I can't imagine the DNC rules and BYlaws seating the delegates in these two States any other way than a 50-50 split, simply so that they will be represented at the convention.

Everyone was crystal clear on what would happen if they violated the rules. To adher to the rules, Sen. Obama and all other democratic candidates, except Clinton, removed their names from the ballot in Michigan. And no one campaigned in Florida.

It would be an injustice, to conclude any other way.

It's time for REAL change in Washington, it's time for Barack Obama for president !

Pelaton said...

Pastorgene: I think that is what I said: Pledged delegates are bound to the state vote (somewhat); super (or unpledged) delegates are not. I also said that for those who think that super delegates should be tied to their state's wishes should look at Edward Kennedy and Bill Richardson. Their states voted for Clinton, yet, they are endorsing Obama. Nuff said.
VP selection issue: The primary process and length has been in place probably longer than Obama is old; some states have moved around, but that is about it. So, no, he does not need any more time than any other nominee has had in years past to search for a VP. That is assuming he IS the nominee; right now he isn't...and it is his Hope that the Audacity to act like a nominee will somehow make it happen; not to mention, the audacity to exclude Montana, South Dakota, and Puerto Rico ---nevermind the FL/MI issue.
The RBC and DNC will most likely split 50-50 the FL and MI; then we are back where we started: Super delegates - 700+ of them choosing the nominee.
For months now, the question/issue of total number of delegates needed has been circulating -- everyone realizing that "something" would have to be done and most likely, the number would change to include some portion of FL and MI; yet, CNN never mentioned it. They continued to forge ahead with their doomsday-for-Hillary numbers (2026) which possibly influenced some voters. If Wolf is for Hillary, he is alone, I can assure you. Except for the token Lanny Davis or Paul Begala who admit to being Clinton supporters, the whole lot of "strategists" "experts" and guests from The Situation Room to Anderson Cooper 360 spend the entire time giving Obama advice on how to win or on damage control.

ahoff48 said...

I like to argue that at most Michigan was a referendum on Clinton: 55% favorable; 45% unfavorable. So maybe she should get 10% and Obama the rest.

Pelaton said...

ahoff48: Hmmmmm; now, that's a novel approach. Let's see what the RBC says. T minus 3 and counting.....

PastorGene said...


Your proposal is at least as sensible and fair as Lanny Davis'. At least you don't dress it up as "neutral." Of course, while I'm sure you're at least half-way kidding, Lanny was totally serious! That guy really has chutzpah!

CLCDJC said...

Another scenario for FL and MI:
#6 scenario:
Clinton gets Florida at the percentage she won it by which was49.77% and Obama received 32.93% of the votes. For Michigan, since Obama's name was not on the ballot this state should be split 50/50. The delegates would be dispersed accordingly.

Peter said...

Maybe, if it was the MI and FL superdelegates that got the democrats into this mess by moving the dates, then their votes should be the uncounted votes. That holds them responsible for moving the dates. Can it be broken down like that?

Then, seat the pledged delegates in FL based on an average of the FL results and the national results (to account for campaigning).

Then, seat the MI pledged delegates based on an average of the 55 - (45?) results and the national average.

There's a lot of fiction in the averaging and the MI results, but it's an option.

The PD distribution would end up: FL HRC101-BHO84, MI HRC67-BHO61

The "people's voices" are "heard." and the states still receive reprimand for moving their dates.

bluedogdem said...

Since the Clintons are shilling and talking up the most recent results (W. Virginia and Kentucky) is would be hypocritical not to use contemporaneous pledged delegate counts. It certainly does make more sense to use current counts rather than old, stale data in apportioning FL and MI's pledged delegates.

Accordingly, since Obama now has 1979 pledged delegates out of 3,759 and the Clinton's have 1,780, Obama will receive 97 of FL's pledged delegates to Clinton's 88; and in MI, Obama would be alloted 67 pledged delegates to Clinton's 61.

sleepy9112 said...

I think at this point, Obama should give HRC everything she wants out of Florida and Michigan with one exception and that is, he should insist on the 55 unpledged delegates from Michigan. Even with the scenario of her getting 100% of the votes initially cast for her and his getting the 55 uncommitted Michigan votes his lead is insurmountable, unless some catastrophe occurs and suddenly the superdelegates swing wildly in her favor.

PastorGene said...

If the current trend continues, it looks like Obama will win most of Michigan's 55 "uncommitted" anyway. It looks like he has locked up about 31 of the first 36 selected, and possibly a few more of them.

Assuming Obama will win at least 40 of the remaining 86 pledged delegates from the remaining contests, as he certainly should do, even if Hillary wins Puerto Rico by 20 points, then as it stands Obama will need a third or less of the remaining superdelegates to clinch the nomination even on Hillary's terms.

Hillary is running out of cards to play. I wonder, even after Obama clinches the nomination, if she will continue to fight and agitate all the way to the convention and even on the floor of the convention. She may still try to say that even the delegates who are pledged or have endorsed Obama may still change their vote at the convention, even though to date there has not been a single delegate to switch from Obama to Clinton, though several have gone the other direction.

Unknown said...

The Clinton Dictatorship

We were tricked by the Michigan Democratic Committee into not getting out the vote. It’s only in communist parties and third world dictatorships where elections with only one name on the ballot are held or are counted. Yet the Clintons are saying that we must count the Michigan vote. So theirs must be the Clinton Party, not the Democratic Party. The Democratic Party has become a dictatorship not a democratically run organization.

We must not count the Michigan Democratic Primary, or seat the delegates based on that election. When you wake up on Election Day, with only one name on the ballot, knowing your vote won’t count, you do things differently than you would if you knew your vote could count. For instance my 30 year old son did not take the time to vote. I for one, a 60 year old loyal Michigan Democrat, voted in the Republican primary. I was wavering between John Edwards and Barack Obama but I had no way of finding out more about either of them since they agreed not to campaign in Michigan. The snippets you see on the news are not enough. Usually they are skewed to show the opinions of the news organization reporting. I visited all the websites, but then I really had questions and no way of getting answers. I could have voted uncommitted, but what would that mean, uncommitted for Edwards or uncommitted for Obama?

In their haste to deliver the State to the Clintons before Super Tuesday, the Michigan Dems caused the State to lose hundreds of thousands of advertising dollars. The Michigan Dems forced us to vote ignorantly, in January, when so little was known about any of the candidates except the Clintons. The Michigan Dems forced us into voting in an unauthorized election and tricked us into not getting out the vote by saying the election would not count. Now they insist on counting the election and giving the Clintons the advantage. We don’t need this type of manipulation and dishonesty and we don’t need leaders like this in State politics. I will never again mindlessly pull the straight democratic lever and my friends and I pledge to get more involved in party politics so we can get rid of the leadership of the Michigan Dems.

I hope for the sake of the party that the Clinton’s lose the election and thereby their undemocratic grip on the party. Then all the super delegates will be liberated to think freely and there can again be a Democratic Party.

Grandma Linda said...

Regarding Scenario #5 for Florida and Michigan numbers:

Total pledged delegates 3566
50% plus one for majority 1784+1
Total Obama 1757.5
PD needed for majority is 27.5
It looks like Obama has the majority if only 27.5 of the following can be confirmed:

Edwards 18
Others 33

Is this correct?

Yousri said...

Dr. Linda said...
Regarding Scenario #5 for Florida and Michigan numbers:
Dr. Linda,
Total Pleged Delegate for Scebario #5 is: 3566
Majority of Pledged Delegate is: (3566/2)+.5 = 1873.5

Sen. Obama totals is 1751.5
he needs 32 Pledged Delegate to clinch the majority.


Grandma Linda said...


3566/2 really is 1783

Anonymous said...


Clinton 328,000 = 55% X 128 = 70
pledged delegates

Uncommitted @ 238,168 plus Richardson @ 3,845 = 242,113 = 41% = 52 pledged delegates

split the remaining 6 delegates
let the SD's do their vote.

Clinton 870,986 = 49.77% X 185= 93
pledged delegates

Obama 576,214 + 251,562 (Edwards) + 15,704 (Biden) + 14,999 (Richardson) = 40.1% X 185 = 92 pledged delegates
let the SD's do their vote.


Yousri said...

"FL & MI By The Numbers" has been updated with:
4 New Pledged delegates from MI
Today's superdelegates' endorsements.

tmess2 said...

If reading the numbers correctly, it looks like Obama will get the majority of pledged delegates barring a complete disaster in the remaining primaries.?

Figuring that 30% in Puerto Rico gives him 14, current polls show him leading in Montana and South Dakota which gets him 16 or 17, and the Edwards endorsement should get him 1 or 2 delegates at the state Convention in Iowa (and yes I realize you can't include that result until it happens but a 50-50 split of the Edwards state convention delegates gives him 2 more national convention delegates from Iowa).

Chris said...

The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer (the only US news program I am able to watch from here, as I'm in Central Asia) just showed an interview with Rules and By-Laws Committee members Michael Steed (pro-Clinton) and Allan Katz (pro-Obama).

Saturday sounds as though it will be ugly. Katz was basically saying that splitting delegates about 50/50 would be fine with the Obama people, as would giving Clinton an edge. But Steed was calling for all delegates to be seated according to the January votes, period-end-of-story, including keeping the Michigan Uncommitteds uncommitted. The interview must be up on the website, for those who are interested.

It seems to me that as long as the Committee follows the rules and is mindful of the fact that both states must be seated somehow, this will lead them to any solution other than #1 or #5. But given that the Clinton supporters have been making much more noise (because it's all riding on Saturday for them), I wonder what the chances are that the Committee will have to cave in and seat everyone as-is.

As has been noted here, Obama will maintain his lead no matter what. But I have seen Clinton supporters indicate that if his lead is less than, say, 150 delegates total, they are prepared to go all the way to the Convention. The only way to cut that lead sufficiently is to have the Committee go along with seating both states as-is. Because Clinton has everything riding on this outcome while Obama doesn't, I am concerned that the outcome is more likely than it may at first seem.

To be sure, I am concerned because I am an Obama supporter. But I am concerned also because I want a Democratic victory this year, and believe that a fight going into August is the best way to ensure a Republican victory. Many Clinton supporters I know seem similarly concerned.

Oregon Dem said...


The math works - but I do believe Biden has not made an endorsement yet.

Chris said...

Garry Shay, a pro-Clinton RBC member profiled on this DCW thread-- -- said earlier in May that he planned to object to the Clinton proposal at Saturday's RBC meeting. I found that information on a Hillary Clinton site, here -- .

Anonymous said...

Oregon Dem:

You are right, Biden has declared yet (15,704 @ .9%). Sorry. I think what ever math is used, Hillary will just appeal to drag this into August. She really doesn't care about Democrats, just herself, which has been always apparent. Unless the SDs get upset with her and declare shortly after 6/3.... we could be in deep trouble.

David Pearl said...,0,7280225.story
Democratic panel set to resolve Clinton-Obama delegate dispute
. . . One Clinton supporter on the rules panel, who asked not to be named in order to be able to discuss the matter candidly, conceded that there was virtually no outcome in the committee that could lead to a Clinton victory.
"It's not going to make a difference," the Clinton ally said. "At the end of the day, what we do on Saturday is not going to change the fact that Obama is going to win the nomination." . . .

Uncle John said...

Hi All,

An Obama-leaning Republican here, with some observations on the MI and FL problems.

Thanks for your discussion. Much of what I read here helps me decide between McCain and Obama. I like the young guy because he is respectful and hopeful. I like the old guy for the same reasons. Issues: both have positive points with me, for very different reasons.

There are plenty of plus points for Obama discussed here; I needn't repeat them. Generally, I agree.

But I think the DNC and the candidates have not handled the MI and FL situation well. Back in February and March, when the two states were seriously exploring methods for a do-over, I think the DNC should not have tried to satisfy both campaigns. They could have simply said, "Anything you come up with according to party rules is fine with us. Just go do it." Then they would have to make sure to comply with their respective state laws, then go ahead and run an election/caucus/whatever in compliance with Dem party rules and state election laws.

I think it was a mistake to let the campaigns have a virtual veto over the re-do process. If a re-do method follows the rules, it's as fair as you're likely to get. Just go do it. Neither Obama nor Clinton should complain about FL or MI seeking to remedy their election defects by following the rules.

Probably too late for that now. My preferred solution:
69 Clinton - 59 Obama in MI, then cut that in half. Seat everybody with half votes.
105 Clinton - 69 Obama in FL, then full seating with half votes as in MI.

This combines Scenarios 2 and 3 on the MI & FL by the Numbers page.

Garth Sheriff Architect said...

Here's a heads up to the really politically savvy. The most current MI + FL plan being circulated by DRBC staff ( see MSNBC's "First Read") has the Florida delegation halved and the Michigan delegation cut 50/50 on pledged delegates AND all of the Super Delegates halved. But with a new magic number of 2118, Obama supporters should lobby to keep the Super Delegates as WHOLE VOTES since Obama does not care whether or not Hillary "gains on him" in Super Delegates. He/his campaign/his supporters should only care about the absolute number that puts them over the top. Therefore, whole Super Delegate Obama supporters in FL and MI, even if outnumbered by Hillary Super Ds in those 2 state would nonetheless put Obama over the magic number. Remember if he is more or less only penalized 19 pledged delegates out of the above scenario, it is easier to make that up/ go over the top with WHOLE Super Delegates.

Yousri said...

"FL & MI By The Numbers" has been updated Today's superdelegates' endorsements.

madahnuc said...

Great tables! Any chance you can include 2 scenarios:

1. If FL delegates are reduced by 1/2 (and thus the district by district delegates are recalculated)

2. Same thing for MI.

It makes a difference whether each delegate gets 0.5 votes or if the number of delegates is halved and are then assigned to candidates based on the district results. See


Matt said...

I honestly don't think they'll cut the delegates in half. As you said, it changes the numbers in arbitrary ways. Also, it forces Florida and Michigan to tell half its delegates - sorry, you won't be going to Denver. Way to get 'em revved up for the fall election.

I don't see any advantages to anyone for cutting the delegates in half at this point, as opposed to giving each delegate 1/2 vote. We'll try to get something ready, but probably won't include it in the main post unless it looks more likely than I think it does now.

lolilalo said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
bluedogdem said...

Another fair solution at this juncture is for the RBC to simply continue their Saturday hearing to June 4th or some other later date before the Credentials Committee assumes jurisdiction. This allows all states to particiate in the primary process (which has been the Clinton's mantra ad nauseum) before any crucial decisions are made. And the Clinton's could not object, for to do so would be despicably hypocritical. Right?

jpsedona said...

Matt & all,

CQ Politics has an article that indicates that the RBC meeting schedule will be:

= 9:30am Oral Arguments (open to public)
= "The committee then will break for a private lunch"
= "At an open afternoon session..."

I've searched for any TV schedules that would confirm that the afternoon session is being broadcast and open to the public (vs. an open discussion not available to the public).

The usage of "a private lunch" followed by "an open afternoon session" leads me to wonder whether the discussion is open & whether it will be broadcast.

Does anyone know & have a source confirming whether the afternoon session will be open (and broadcast) or closed to public ???

CQ Article

George M said...

In scenario table 5 above, please check Obama pledged delegate total.

Shouldn't it be 1751.5 instead of 1757.5? Otherwise it does not cross foot to 3566.

Thanks for checking and correcting this.

Pelaton said...

jpsedona: yes, the discussions will be open to the public -- according to a conference call between some RBC members and members of the media. I did not hear that any of it will be "broadcast". If you hear anything about that, would you post it?
The schedule for Saturday's meeting as outlined in this call is: Beginning at 9:30 EST, presentations will be in this order:
1st - The Florida State Party Challenge
2nd - Each Campaign presentation
3rd - The Michigan State Party Challenge
4th - Each Campaign presentation
Private Lunch Break
Public discussion on presentations
All Decisions expected Friday

Yousri said...

George M said...
In scenario table 5 above, please check Obama pledged delegate total.

Shouldn't it be 1751.5?
Thanks for checking and correcting this.

You're correct. 1757.5 was a typo.
It is corrected now.
All other numbers are correct.

13ben said...





13ben said...

edit that...

they must suffer some penalty, especially if FL is penalized.

1/2 vote for all.

unionguy said...

Sadly, the Obama endorsers on the RBC and the presenters seem incapable of handling the technicalities of the Rules, unlike the Clintonistas.
On Michigan, for example, where the issue appears to be whether the RBC and the DNC can re-allocate the "uncommitted" to Obama, Ickes and others (all staying on message) say "can't do it under Rule 13A or "fair reflection."
But read on!! Rule 13F says:
“For the purpose of fairly reflecting the division of preferences, the non-binding advisory presidential preference portion of primaries shall not be considered a step in the delegate selection process and is considered detrimental. State parties must take steps to educate the public that a non-binding presidential preference event is meaningless, and state parties and presidential candidates should take all steps possible not to participate.”
Since the Michigan Primary at the time DID NOT COUNT and was declared by all to be "non-binding" or a "beauty contest" it should NOT be a step in the delegate selection process.
Thus, RBC either sticks with the current position -don't count Michigan's primary and don't seat delegates- or compromise with something else.
And this could apply to Florida, too, if there were not an apparent deal.
But no presenter or Obama endorser on the RBC seems either to know this or understand it or care.
Doesn't bode well for an Obama administration to me.

Uncle John said...

Get on CNN.

Here it comes; they're gonna vote.

Uncle John said...

Florida, seat all: motion failed, 12 votes to 15. Chant: "Denver! Denver! Denver!"

Uncle John said...

Florida motion: Clinton – Edwards – Obama 52.5 6.5 33.5. Unpledged, Pledged ½ vote. Some disorder when presenting this motion. Huffman in favor. Ickes in favor.

Vote: 27 in favor, virtually unanimous.

Uncle John said...

Michigan motion: all delegates ½ vote, Clinton 34.5, Obama 29.5.

Debate: Ickes reserves Clinton’s right to take this to the credentials committee. “Denver! Denver! Denver!” Considerable disorder.

Vote: 19 in favor, 8 against.

Chris said...

The impression I got was that Florida was decided on last night down to choreography (Huffman brings motion to seat all, it gets voted down, Huffman is first to speak in favor of motion to seat half).

So the real fun was Michigan. Wow--Harold Ickes really got the crowd worked up, and said some nasty things (mainly untrue or cherry-picked). I do think it wasn't worth those 4 delegates to Senator Obama, my guy--a threat to take it to the Credentials Committee and all thrown in. Everett Ward got everyone quieted down and eye-on-the-ball again with a reminder of what was really important, and a reminder that Ickes was just a grandstander with selective amnesia.

Long and short, admirably played but I hope it doesn't go to the Credentials Committee.

Guess you guys can take those other options down now. Thanks for the hard work.

Unknown said...

Based on the half votes for FL and MI using the vote for the pledged delegates in FL and the 69-59 proportioning in MI, I get a total of 1593 pledged delegates for Hillary rather than 1586.5. Am I missing something?

Unknown said...

Found the error in my spreadsheet. It was related to roughing out an allocation of Edwards' pledged delegates that haven't committed to anyone. Your total is correct, as usual. Thank goodness someone is tracking well.

Mike said...

Just have a feeling that Hillary will drop out tomorrow after winning PR, since the RBC decision did not go her way. Tomorrow & Monday are her last opportunity to drop out as a winner.

sleepy9112 said...

The Obama team understood clearly the intricacies of the rules. However, the campaign requested that their supporters not make a big scene at the hearing because party unity was more important. He also saw to it that his presenters did not cling to technicalities to hold up the process or vote. As you can see, they had nothing to fear and they were able to show that they could be reasonable and highlight the need for party unity. That plays well to your rank and file democrat. The fanatics were not going to be happy no matter what took place.

Harold Ickes is the biggest hypocrit particularly since he was one of the most vocal critics of Florida and Michigan last year and voted to penalize them for their early primary stance. Of course, in his mind at the time, he believed that Hillary had a lock on the nomination.