WASHINGTON (CNN) – Democratic leaders hopeful that a deal to seat delegates from Florida and Michigan would mark an end to the deep division the controversy has brought to the party got some instant – and less than encouraging – feedback as they finalized the measure Saturday evening.
As members of the Democratic National Committee's Rules and Bylaws panel voted in favor of the measures, some supporters of Hillary Clinton's White House bid rose from their seats and began to shout “Don’t steal my vote!” and “Let’s go, McCain!”
Several paced the back of the ballroom, yelling at the committee members and chanting “Denver! Denver!” – the site of this summer's Democratic presidential nominating convention.
When Barack Obama’s name was mentioned, boos filled the room.
"This motion will hijack, hijack, remove four delegates won by Hillary Clinton and most importantly reflect the preferences of 600,000 Michigan voters,” said Clinton senior adviser and RBC member Harold Ickes, who added that the White House hopeful reserved her right to bring an appeal before the DNC's Credentials Committee later this summer.
The delegate allocations were a blow to Clinton, who comes away with an advantage of just 24 delegates.
She is favored in Sunday’s Puerto Rico primary. But Obama is thought to hold an edge going into next Tuesday’s contests in Montana and South Dakota – meaning Clinton’s chances of pushing Obama’s delegate lead down into the double digits before the Democratic convention have virtually disappeared.
After the vote, as knots of Clinton and Obama supporters circled each other and faced off in the lobby outside the ballroom, uncommitted Florida superdelegate Mitch Caesar – who said he would weigh in soon after the last primary Tuesday - praised the party for “taking the first step toward unity.”
Nearby, Obama supporter Laura Mitchell wasn’t so sure the party had started down the path to comity. “I think it’s going to be a disaster if this goes past Tuesday,” said the Maryland resident. “Every day it gets a little harder to imagine we will be able to come together.”
Boston native and Clinton backer Jenny Doggett, an organizer of grassroots group Count the Votes Cast, called the DNC “spineless.”
“I think what they’ve done is divisive, destroying the party. I’m disgusted,” said Doggett, who expressed hope that the popular vote in Puerto Rico and a shift in superdelegates might still be able to deliver the nomination to Hillary Clinton. “I’m done with the Democratic Party,” she added. “I’m an independent voter now.”
The Rules committee ultimately adopted modified versions of a Florida delegate proposal presented by Jon Ausman, and the Michigan Leadership Plan developed by Democratic officials in that state.
All delegates from both states, both pledged and superdelegates, will be seated – but each will only be able to cast half a vote. Florida’s delegates were split The decision adds 313 new delegates, but only 156.5 votes, to the summer convention, and raises the number of delegates required to win the nomination to 2,118.
The Florida proposal was passed unanimously by the panel – but faced a rockier reception on the Michigan plan, which employed a complicated and controversial delegate allocation formula that awarded a 10 delegate, 5 vote edge to Clinton.
The Clinton campaign later released a statement from Ickes and fellow Clinton adviser and RBC member Tina Flournoy that said the Michigan decision “violates the bedrock principles of our democracy and our Party,” and repeated their willingness to challenge the decision before the delegation is seated at the Democratic National Convention.
The Obama campaign released a statement from campaign manager David Plouffe praising the RBC decision. “We're extremely gratified that the commission agreed on a fair solution that will allow Michigan and Florida to participate in the Convention,” said Plouffe.
At a press conference at the hotel following the final vote, a skeptical reporter pressed Alexis Herman on her claim that the panel’s decision would unite the party. As Herman responded, chants of “Denver! Denver!” could be heard from the lobby outside.
Even if Hillary had been given everything she wanted down to the letter (which would be impossible without causing chaos in 2012 when all states choose to move up their primaries), they would still be chanting "Let's go McCain" when Obama won the nomination.
The truth is simply that her supporters are sore losers, and are voting with pure emotion and not based off of reason. They are attempting to use their vote as extortion to get their way even when they have lost. It is pathetic.
This should do wonders to further the "emotional female" stereotype. Keep at it. It will be fun to see your "emotion" in a few years when Hillary is an afterthought and McCain appoints two conservative supreme court justices, making the balance 6-3 conservative and leading to the overturn of Roe v. Wade.
Her supporters want everything. For crying out loud they gave her more in both states. I mean comeon they could have just not awarded nobody any like they both agreed to in the first place.
That's because Hillary Clinton is an angry women.
The Republican Party must be rejoicing. I have had this confirmed by so many devout Republicans in Tennessee – I have heard many times over "Obama will never defeat McCain", The Republicans want a McCain Obama contest. . They fear a McCain Clinton contest I seriously question the Obama ability to win the large diverse states they must have to defeat McCain in november
This is a joke! Hillary has won most of the popular vote! Obama should not have been awarded any delegates in Michigan. Dems, you're done in November. McCain will be the next president of the USA. All because of Pelosi and Dean...
I wish the Clinton supporters would get over this and move on and unite with the Obama supporters. She has basically lost the game. The number do not lie. She is really proving that she is a divisive person and not a very nice person. I have lost all respect for she and her husband. The feel that they have an entitlement to this.
Let the handful of Clinton supporters who are too selfish and egotistical to accept the fair compromise put forth by the committee vote for McCain then. There aren't enough of them to make a difference, and we don't need their type of voter anyways.
Also, the amount of noise being made about the "hijacking" of 4 delegates from Hillary is just silly. They each only get half a vote, so Hillary lost just 2 votes as a result of the compromise solution. I'm sure she's going to whine and complain as if those two votes are the reason why she lost the nomination, though.
A lot of people are enraged by how the DNC is handling the Michigan and Florida votes but they forget that all candidates agreed to the rules. Shouldn't all candidates honor them? If this was not the right way to handle this, the opposition to it should have been expressed during deliberations of the rules and not when it fails to favor one candidate's goals.
Team players abide by the rules agreed to by the team. Team players support the team and not their individual objectives.
I will support whoever gets the nomination. It is time for change. Enough of Bush/McBush. It is time to unite.
Both candidates have expressed that they will support whoever gets the nomination. Why can't the rest of us follow?
I think we all Hillary supporter going to vote for McCain if their give Obama
a nominee because he is racist campaign in the first beginning until now.
I don't think that's Obama is United American he will be a big divide this
country if he get elect.
punish the democratic leaders, not the people!!!
Whatever. Hillary is going to cry foul unless everything goes her way. She is like the little kid on the playground that gets picked last and then takes the ball and goes home. NOONE WANTS YOU HILLARY. Quit your gripping and go hang out at the local bar and dream of sniper fire at 3 am. Your a joke and only care about yourself.
Wow, and these are the people who criticize Obama for his comment calling people "bitter". These extremist Clinton supporters are the most bitter people I have seen, ever.
If they would seriously vote McCain because Clinton lost, then they don't even believe in Clinton's message. People shouldn't be voting for candidates purely out of spite or because of their sex or race. Pay attention to the platforms of these candidates. If you can vote for McCain, you could not possibly believe in everything Clinton stands for.
Pay attention to what will be best for your country. Does any Clinton supporter truly believe McCain will do better things for this country than Obama? And if you think he will be worse and still vote for him, you are an idiot to be voting at all.
The Democratic National Committee's Rules and Bylaws panel favored the anointed far left fringe candidate and many Dems, including me, will now vote McCain. It is all about who will be the best president and that is not Obama! :(
Are we now 5 year olds? C'mon people. Grow up. Clinton gained 24 delegates between two primaries that were supposed to count for zero. Plus 24 is more than she got out of OH, PA, and TX combined. FL & MI broke the rules and had to be punished.
And she is still trailing.........I am so over this whole ordeal. Superdelegates get on your job and do what you should have done some time ago and take a stand on who you are supporting so that we can move forward already. I just think the way that the Democrats hold their primaries is stupid in the first place. Why can't all of the states vote at one time or better yet in a 2 month span or something rather than dragging it out for 5 or 6 months? What is the reason behind it? This needs to be dealt with and we need to move on. All of Hillary's supporters that want to vote for McCain, let them go ahead and do it. They will just suffer for another 4 years because they cant get past someone's skin color, how silly is that? Go on and vote McCain who cares, it will be all on you. You wont be hurting anyone but yourselves and your future generation.
No more shall I be a yellow dog democrat. DNC is not fair.
I don't understand this love for Clinton/hate for Obama, they have very similar policies. I am not a big fan of either but both would be an improvement. As for Michigan, technically Obama should get zero delegates but considering the demographics of the state, there's a good chance he would win let alone get 40% of the vote, and I don't think you can punish a candidate just for being gutless and refusing a revote. In the end all you can really say is they both worked hard at it and Obama came out with the lead.
I guess thats it, plz be rational and vote dem. this fall Hillary supporters.
It is not Sen.Obama fault. It is the DNC rule and even RNC awarded on;y 1/2 delegates - so we are consistent.
Anyway, Where was this escalations and anger before super Tuesday when Sen.Clinton was expected to be the nominee??
where was this anger when DNC and all campaigns agreed to the rule???
where was this anger when Sen. Clinton did not have a strategy for all states?
Sen. Obama played by the rule and campaigned in all states and won more pledged delegates . if super delegates do not like it, then they can select Sen.clinton - it is allowed by rule as well.
why the anger at Sen.Obama ??/ I do not understand.
So if we go and vore for Republican party then we will get a continuation of current policies .
if you are happy with it then go for it - we are democracy and we get what we elect
It is going to be up to Hillary to help bring the party together. Her not stopping this type of division is the same as condoning it. She needs to convince people to support Obama by the end of next week.
It sounds like the type of crowd you would expect at a high school football game rather than a committee meeting. Is she determined to ruin the Democratic Party? How can any rational person think it's fair that Obama receive no votes from Michigan when he pulled his name from the ballot under the Party's rules. If I also might add, Clinton, and Ickes, both supported these rules before they started to hurt Clinton. Maybe it is time to change, and the change has to be for this nagging irrational bread of Clintonites to grow up.
The angry reactions of the Clinton supporters really saddens me. Michigan and Florida violated rules which had been well known for 2 years. Her supporters' and campaigns' sense of entitlement and willingness to break rules, and create such a divisive atmosphere should scare anyone and makes me even more sure that I support Obama.
What a pathetic Democratic Party, I have never seen so much backstabbing and dishonesty in my life.
I guess they're right: "Hell hath no fury like" etc. etc....
Thanks, ladies! 1000 years of war, and repeal of roe v wade. That'll teach us men! Brilliant.
Most of these people were not from FL or MI - they are outraged because they won't see a woman as President this time around. They won't find McCain has too much of a femiine side...