Monday, March 10, 2008

Political update

A little while back I did a straight political post expressing my hope that both parties' primary races would result in brokered conventions. I stated that the likelihood of it happening for the Reps was pretty high, and less so for the Dems. Boy was I wrong.

McCain has wrapped it up for the Reps, and even a couple of weeks back it became pretty clear that he had it. Huckabee held on for a little while, past the point where he could have possibly expected to win, and it's over now. The Dems have settled into a two person battle that looks like it will go the distance, more out of ego and stubbornness than anything else, with the media egging it on.

Why do I say that? Well, the results of the March 4 primaries were almost perfectly split, with neither candidate gaining any ground. I think the final tally was a net gain by Clinton of 7 pledged delegates. And yet, the same outlets who were saying her campaign was dead and that she needed to get out, for the good of the Party, are now saying that she's regained command of the race.

With 7 delegates?

The big issue the Dems have to deal with now is how to treat Michigan and Florida fairly. The states moved their primaries/caucuses to a point on the calendar that had been tagged off-limits by the DNC, and so they were stripped of their delegates to the convention. Clinton was the only major candidate on the ballot in MI (both Obama and Edwards removed themselves) so she took a good chunk of the votes, and nobody "actively" campaigned in FL, with Clinton again winning the state. Obviously, the Clinton camp has a lot to gain by seating the delegates as pledged, and the Obama camp has incentive to block that. The trick for Obama is going to be arguing to redistribute those delegates in a fair (to his mind) way while not seeming to go counter to the "wishes" of the voters.

Glad I'm not the one having to set it up.

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