I was fortunate enough to catch some of CNN's coverage of the DNC's rules committee meeting yesterday concerning what to do with Florida and Michigan's delegates, or as I call it "The Best Campaign Commerical for John McCain Ever Broadcast." Boy, what a mess that whole situation turned out to be. I won't go into the details again of just how badly the Democrats have screwed up what should have been a slam dunk for Democrats this November.
However, I did want to revisit one point as it pertains to the half-measure Howard Dean got passed, which was to give Michigan and Florida delegations a half vote at the national convention. This isn't quite what I had in mind from the side that loves to toss out how "Republicans want African-Americans to count as 3/5 of a person again." Let's not forget that the original set-up was that Michigan and Florida would not be allowed to seat any delegates if they moved up their primary dates, which the state party leaders did. To even allow them to dispute the ruling now is silly, but it's how the game played out, so we have to address it as is.
And let me tell ya, it doesn't look good for Democrats.
Not only will the Democrats have to deal with the comparsion I made earlier concerning the 3/5 of a person, but they will have to deal with the aftermath of a solution that doesn't get at the heart of the issue: the Democrats don't know how to lead with integrity. If Howard Dean had the leadership skills or at the very least the stones to stand behind his decision, he would have rejected the appeal citing the ruling made. If Michigan and Florida's Democratic Party leaders objected to it, they should have done it at that time and gotten this whole mess behind them before now.
On a larger scale, this delegate situation reflects badly on the Democratic Party as a whole because it shows how divided the party is and how ill-prepared they are to deal with it. This has been brewing since the Clinton years and they've just let it go, thinking that the various factions will unite behind the Democratic candidate as they did in the past. But this year's election cycle is different in that instead of having one candidate that blew out the others, there were two. That created friction, which has turned into the kind of partisan rancor we haven't seen from the Left since Election 2000. And when you consider the ego it takes to even consider running for President, the friction between the two campaigns blazed into a wildfire.
The half-vote measure won't do enough to patch the party back together again, nor will making Clinton the VP choice with Obama at the head of the ticket. The divisions are still there and they are bound to flare up again if the two candidates join forces (or farces as the case may be). But on a deeper level, the half-vote idea will only serve to reinforce the idea that the Democratic leadership doesn't trust the rank and file to decide what's best for the party.
And somewhere in Washington, DC, the RNC is running to church this morning to praise God for the gift He gave them yesterday.