March 20th, 2008
03:30 PM ET
12 years ago

Blitzer: Would a re-vote be that difficult?

 Re-votes in Michigan and Florida appear increasingly unlikely.

Re-votes in Michigan and Florida appear increasingly unlikely.

(CNN) - It’s too bad that Michigan and Florida don’t seem to be able to get their acts together to have Democratic presidential primary re-votes in early June.

For those of us who cover politics, it would have been very exciting to see two more fiercely fought primaries in two critically important states.

But more importantly, it will be a pity for all those millions of Democratic voters in those states if their delegates wind up having no say in the selection of their party’s presidential nominee at the party convention in Denver at the end of the summer. And the ramifications for the party from that could be very significant in November.

The Democrats in Michigan and Florida lost their delegates because they moved up their primaries to January against Democratic Party rules.

Some of those frustrated Democratic voters will walk away from this process with an awful taste in their mouths. And it’s possible that could convince some of them to actually vote for John McCain or Ralph Nader in the fall or simply stay home and not vote at all. At least, that’s what some of those voters are telling reporters and pollsters now.

There is still time for the Democratic National Committee and the presidential campaigns to work out some other compromise that allows the delegates to be seated without having make-over primaries. Indeed, I still suspect something along these lines will occur.

But I still don’t understand why it became so complicated to organize these make-over primaries. The actual ballot would have been rather simple – you could vote for Clinton or Obama. Put an X in front of your candidate. How difficult is that?

- Wolf Blitzer

Filed under: Wolf Blitzer
soundoff (228 Responses)
  1. Nick

    Wolf, you're holding your cards backward and anybody who has been paying attention can see them. I'm sorry Hillary wasn't able to steal the nomination this way too but you're a journalist! Aren't you?

    March 20, 2008 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  2. Norm

    Thats the problem Wolf, it's to simple. A new leader might emerge. WE CAN'T HAVE THAT!

    March 20, 2008 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  3. Steve Thomson

    If bringing democracy to Iraq is anything like selecting a presidential candidate for the United States, you guys should be there for the next hundred years.......Steve Coldwater,Canada

    March 20, 2008 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  4. Ash

    Totally agree .. why is re-doing the primaries in Michigan and Florida so difficult ?

    March 20, 2008 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  5. 2008

    stick by the rules people

    March 20, 2008 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  6. Bob

    Once again, a refreshing voice of reason, Wolf.

    Unfortunately one of the two Democratic campaigns is more concerned with achieving short-term victories in a primary than they are with fundamental rights like "one person, one vote". How the Obama campaign's stonewalling plays out for Barack in the general election is something totally irrelevant to them, I suspect.

    March 20, 2008 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  7. Mac in FL

    So true Wolf, so true.

    The DNC will reap what it has sewn.

    March 20, 2008 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  8. Stan

    No, not for the voters. Just organizing the polling places. DNC should use the Florida result and have a revote in Michigan. Don't understand the confusions.

    March 20, 2008 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  9. Adam FL

    I agree Wolf! How hard would it be to pick one of the 2 from a list of just the 2.

    I think Obama is scared.

    March 20, 2008 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  10. Nicki, MI

    No, it wouldn't be difficult if they both agreed to it. Clinton won both states the first time and is favored to win them again. Obama knows he’ll lose a revote, so he won't permit it. Michigan may have broken DNC rules in its first primary, but attempts to change legislation that would allow a revote within DNC rules are being blocked by Obama supporters in the Michigan legislature. The DNC will have to be the arbiter or it will go to the convention.

    March 20, 2008 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  11. Terry Wood

    Wolf, answer this question. Why is it that when Hillary tries to sway the superdelegates, she is merely playing by the rules of superdelegates but when the rules come into play on the votes in Michigan and Florida....they no longer matter.......something very wrong with your thinking. I guess you never said you were smart.. It shows.

    March 20, 2008 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  12. LatinoNation

    JUST DO IT !! I Say or we will lose for sure the white house I believe!! 😦

    March 20, 2008 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  13. C5

    Would not be complicated as long as all republicans, independents, and democrats registered voters can vote as it occured the first time.

    March 20, 2008 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  14. The Austrian

    The difficulty, Wolf, is relative. The problem here is that it would allow dishonest and rule-breaking politicians to get away with their actions. And this CANNOT be allowed to happen.

    March 20, 2008 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  15. Ross

    Because the rules were clear from the begining and the only reasons the states are "frustrated" is because the Clinton campaign has told them that they should be. This is like the Patriots asking to replay the first quarter of the Super Bowl because they did not like the way the game played out in the end.

    March 20, 2008 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  16. Wole

    Blitzer, maybe you should think a little hard and might be able to see the difficulties.
    I am sick and tired of CNN subjective commentaries, ranging from Dobbs to the rude Campbell Brown.

    March 20, 2008 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  17. Robert Scofield Columbus, Ohio

    I don't get it Wolf, would they like me to construct a plan for them?

    March 20, 2008 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  18. Realistic

    Very shallow analysis.

    Do you exclude the Dems and Indys who voted in the Republican Primary because they thought that the Dem primary didn't count?

    How would a new election deal with the statutory time limits for overseas voters and those serving in Iraq?

    The only smart thing to do is to simply divide all the delegates (both elected and superdelegates) from both Michigan and Florida evenly between Clinton and Obama and go on down the road.

    March 20, 2008 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  19. GMS

    Please remember before criticizing these two states, that it was not the choice of the Democrats but instead of the Republican majority. Look into Florida specifically, where they do not hold the majority and they voted against the measure. Why then "is it fair" that their vote should not be counted for breaking DNC's rules especially when they did not have any control over it.

    Both Dem candidates should work together to resolve the issue and they should unite in calling for a re-vote.

    March 20, 2008 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  20. Chris Banner, Montreal

    Get over it.... It ain't gonna happen, The Dems initially said the Michigan and Florida wouldn't count... And now that we're getting to close to the end, you want it to count. Why didn't you say so in January when the campaign was about to kick off
    Where were you Wolf?

    March 20, 2008 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  21. Richard

    Those voters in MI and FL should take this up with their elected officials at election time. In Florida it is sad, the State Government is controlled by the Republican right in all areas. They moved it up knowing that it would hurt their democratic constituents. It is very unfortante. MI needs to layout the DETAILS and not be vague about who will get to vote and who will not. It also hurt Sen. Clinton that she ran to Michigan to plead her lost cause as well as the Clinton fat cats reporting that they were willing to pay the $12 Million.

    March 20, 2008 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  22. Obama 08

    Wolf, It is a shame to not be able to count voters. I would feel cheated as well, but it is the fault of their own states that created the mess they are in and instead of blaming the DNC or the candidates they should blame their locally elected officials. I know I would remember what they had done come election time for local elections and penalize them for thier arrogance. Seat them 50/50 and call it a day so we can move on the November already!

    March 20, 2008 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  23. jujub

    Both candidates agreed in writing that the delegates should not be seated for violating the rules of the DNC with respect to their primaries.

    If Clinton took her existing popular vote in both FLA and MI, she'd still be behind Barack Obama by 350,000 in popular votes. Give it up Hillary and stick by the DNC terms and conditions that you agreed to and stop blaming others for your failures.

    March 20, 2008 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  24. Midwest Chuck


    It's the same legislatures that decided to move their primaries ti January in defiance of the Democratic National Party rules. They were dysfunctional when they moved their primaries. Why are you surprised the legislatures are still dysfunctional?

    March 20, 2008 05:03 pm at 5:03 pm |
  25. Michael Leman

    What is complicated, Wolf, is that you can't unring a bell to have a true do-over in the primaries. Crossover voters in MI and FL wouldn't get to revote. Oh, and MI and FL have a whole lot of people in case you haven't noticed.

    Then there's the fact that actually redoing the primary doesn't change the delegate math significantly, but wastes precious months of the calendar and money that could be better spent on other attacking McCain.

    March 20, 2008 05:04 pm at 5:04 pm |
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