May 6th, 2008
03:31 PM ET
13 years ago

Blitzer: Hold new Florida, Michigan primaries in August?

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.l.cnn.net/cnn/2008/POLITICS/05/06/primaries.change/art.voting.flag.in.ap.jpg caption="Some have raised the possibility of adding the Clinton-Obama race to Florida and Michigan's local elections this August."](CNN) - If neither Hillary Clinton nor Barack Obama emerges after the final June 3 primaries with the magic number of 2,025 delegates – a very real possibility if the remaining contests are close – then this presidential nominating battle could indeed continue until the party convention in Denver that begins on Monday, August 25 and continues until Thursday night, August 28.

That would mean potentially a huge credentials fight on the convention floor involving the seating of those disputed delegates from Michigan and Florida, the two states that moved up their primaries against Democratic National Committee rules and were stripped of those delegates as a result.

Party leaders are clearly very worried about alienating Michigan and Florida voters. Both of those states are critical in the November general election against John McCain.

So how do the Democrats a) avoid a convention floor fight, and b) make sure Florida and Michigan voters are not disenfranchised?

Earlier, there had been an effort to get the two states to hold a second round of primaries but that collapsed for a variety of reasons. As a result, the widely-held assumption has been in recent weeks that it is now too late for such a second round of primaries to take place. But is it?

Here's one idea that is now being floated and that potentially could gain some traction though it would require the DNC changing its current rules which state that the primaries and caucuses must be concluded by early June.

Michigan already has a state-wide primary scheduled for August 5 for local and state elections. Florida has a similar state-wide primary scheduled for August 26, the second day of the Democratic convention in Denver. Why not let the two states add a Hillary Clinton-Barack Obama election to the ballots for those two primaries?

Adding that election to the already scheduled primaries for those two dates wouldn't add any additional cost to the states.

They would simply have to print a new ballot.

Is this a good idea? Would it reassure voters in Michigan and Florida that they would have a say in determining the Democratic presidential nominee? Should the DNC allow this to occur? What do you think?

Here's one thing to ponder – think how exciting that Democratic convention in Denver would be if on the second day it all came down to the Florida primary.


Filed under: Wolf Blitzer
soundoff (288 Responses)
  1. Sheanne

    IF MI & FL VOTERS DON'T GET A CHANCE TO VOTE BECAUSE OF THE POLITICIANS CAN YOU CAN BET THAT THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY WILL LOSE THE GENERAL ELECTION.

    OBAMA HAD TV ADS RUNNING IN FL SO THEIR ORIGINAL VOTE SHOULD COUNT.

    May 6, 2008 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  2. Brian

    Blitzer is desperate to keep this thing going. Ratings > Journalism.

    May 6, 2008 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  3. Superdelegate

    Sounds like job security for media "pundits"

    May 6, 2008 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  4. ShoNeel

    Two words "dangling chad."

    May 6, 2008 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  5. TIM

    I KNEW THAT THE CLINTON NEWS [CNN] WOULD BE FOR THIS. THE RULES WERE THE RULES. GET OVER IT. ONE LITTLE QUESTION ? WHY IS CNN IN THE TANK FOR HILLARY?

    May 6, 2008 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  6. Marc

    They broke the rules. Lets see if CNN will post this.

    May 6, 2008 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  7. Vincent

    August? Are you nuts?! Where is the time for general campaign for the democrats?

    May 6, 2008 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  8. Jeanie

    Come on. The DNC can't flip-flop on their own decisions just because
    they don't like the resulting outcome.

    We need new blood in the DNC and Washington. No more Bush's or Clinton's.

    Let the people talk and support who they want. Keep Obama going in spite of the press's change of mind.

    May 6, 2008 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  9. KM

    I thought that we beat this dead horse to death a few months ago.

    May 6, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  10. Ulysse

    Stupid idea. They would cut down the necessary time to heal the wounds of that race and lose the general election for sure.

    May 6, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  11. Jared

    Mr. Blitzer's idea sounds like a perfect way for the media to continue to run sound bytes that have little to do with our candidates' presidential abilities for the entire summer. I get exhausted just thinking about it.

    May 6, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  12. Leo from NV

    Thanks for bringing this up Wolfe, I love you for it!
    Counting the votes of those two BIG states is a legitimate question to raise for the party if they want any chance to win the Presidency. The people who do not want to discuss this issue are the Obama supporters who have their heads in the sand.

    May 6, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  13. tom

    these two state need to just not reelect the repswho let them down so there vote counts next time. thou at our current pace there may be no next time

    May 6, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  14. proud army and navy mom

    WOLFE,
    you are desparate for rating, aren't you. you call yourself a journalist. you sound like you are being bought and paid for by rush himself. try reporting the news and not being a part of it. journalism 101. pathetic

    May 6, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  15. Ms. GA

    That would be a total disaster! This has gone on long enough!

    May 6, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  16. Nelson - Knoxville

    What is the ennsence of having rules and making the candidates sign in the first place when leaders of the party knew that they would not be man enough to stay with the rule should they have to. I am smelling fraud here and it all because Hillary is in the sencond place and no one can stand with fairness and truth in the party. Why will the USA preach democracy in other countries when they cannot stay with the with which a game was started – Democracy is all about rule of law.

    Nigeria where I came from seam to better than what am witnessing here.

    May 6, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  17. 58 white old ladies for OBAMA

    WE ARE IN NO MOOD TO HAVE THE REPUBLICANS &

    LOBBYISTS ELECT WARHILLIE. THAT WOULD FRACTURE

    THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY IRREPARABLY. THE FRAUD

    OF THE BUSH ELECTION WAS ENOUGH.

    May 6, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  18. GB

    Definitely NOT a good idea. To REWARD for breaking the rules??? They blew it. If they had kept their original dates or moved them up to Super Tuesday, along with many others, then they COULD have had a major impact. As it is, they should not have any impact at all. They'll have to wait for the general election. Otherwise, that will encourage other states in the future to break the rules, and then there will be REAL anarchy!

    May 6, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  19. nina

    What? Change the rules? These 2 states should have their votes counted and delegates sat, but in NO WAY should they determine the outcome of this democratic race.

    These 2 states broke the rules, therefore they should not be rewarded.
    Remember people, this only became an issue for Hillary, once she was losing.
    She didn't say anything until AFTER super tuesday. And then she really has laid it on thick since Obama's 11 straight wins.

    The DNC should adhere to their own rules. Otherwise, what's the point of having them?

    May 6, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  20. Kim, PA

    Florida should stand as is!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Michigan should redo!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    and why wait until August.

    add them now and do Mich now....

    and clearly the better choice will stand!
    Hillary 08'

    if obama wins, i will NOT VOTE FOR HIM. he is a fraud!!!!!

    May 6, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  21. Sean

    They can hold a new primary in MI they feel the need, but in FL on Jan 29th the people of Florida already voted and Obama did run ads well before that point there and he was on the ballot on FL as well. Dean had not right to stip us of our votes as punishment for the actions of our party leaders so if our January 29th votes are not counted and Obama should win I will join my family, friends and most everybody I know in FL whose vote was stolen from them in voting for McCain in November!

    May 6, 2008 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  22. Joe

    makes perfect sense to me. michigan and florida voters should have their votes counted like everyone else. i thought this was a constitutional right.

    May 6, 2008 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  23. Steve

    So to everyone who must not have more then a third grade education. Its not changing the rules. Its well within the rules of the DNC to hold another primary.

    May 6, 2008 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  24. Ohiobo, J From Canada

    Obama will never let it happen because he is fraud. He wants to be the nominee and he does not care about counting every vote

    May 6, 2008 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  25. JohnnyRico

    The problem is that the race won't be concluded in June...or July unless Clinton bows out. Neither candidate has enough delegates to win outright so this is headed for a floor fight at the convention in late August unless all the superdelegates decide to get behind one candidate, which I doubt.

    The DNC isn't so much worried about the nominating fight as they are about the general election. If MI and FL feel disenfranchised, they may end up in McCain's column. Also, it wasn't the voters of MI and FL that broke the rules, it was the state party officials. How does it make sense to deny the residents of two entire states a say in picking the nominee? Even Guam and Puerto Rico's votes matter this year but somehow MI and FLs don't?

    May 6, 2008 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
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