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Barack Obama, other Democrats call for fixes to caucus/primary scheduling

For most folks, the inanity that marked the early part of this campaign's caucus and primary calendar no doubt has been forced from memory -- like a bad dream.

To review:

-- The states that have come to view their sway in the nomination battles as a God-given right played every card at their disposal to hang on to their special places in the process. At one point, the specter loomed of Iowa caucuses that convened before 2008 even arrived! As it was, the caucuses and the New Hampshire primary were crammed into the year's first few days (holiday cheer be damned).

-- Other states, anxious for a greater voice, tried to muscle their way into the action. One result: Rogue primaries in Florida and Michigan that ended being a long-term headache for the Democrats. Another: So many states scheduled their contests for the same day -- the first Tuesday in February -- that several of the candidates simply had to ignore some of them (in the case of Hillary Clinton, a consequence that cost her dearly).

The defects were well-noted by hard-core politicos -- (Democratic activist Elaine Kamarck, for instance, was reflecting on needed fixes back in April, and discussions have been underway within Republican circles on the matter.

Today, Barack Obama's campaign, in conjunction with the Democratic National Committee, announced a step designed to prevent a repeat of what happened this year.

As Democrats start gathering in Denver this weekend for the national convention that starts Monday, the party will be asked to establish a special commission to grapple with the timing of the nomination calendar and other aspects of delegate selection. (Goals will include reducing the number of "superdelegates")

Our colleague Frank James has more on the move at the Swamp.

-- Don Frederick

Comments () | Archives (7)

The comments to this entry are closed.

Yes, by all means, get rid of the superdelegates. Even though they ended up going with the majority of the pledged delegates (to Obama), the prospect that they *might* deliver the nomination to Clinton kept her fighting to the point where it was clear that she was doing more harm than good.

this is a joke right. 5 pts down in the polls, forced upon us by strong armed tactics of nancy pelosi and the anti-war left socialists - we now get that the primary needs to be reformed. you just gave away the white house, a woman's right to choose, checks on corporations, individual rights to privacy (because 2 new justices will be with scalia, roberts, thomas, and alito), by nominating the most liberal individual in the party's history. this party should be renamed the socialist party because the funders of this party are the social elite - ovepaid/underqualified eduators, musicians, and actors - and they are making the agenda. give them this party and we can form the labor party or the pragmatic party or the blue party, and it can be led by hillary and, yes, bill clinton - who gave us 8 great years, and was unjustly thrown under the bus in 2000, 2004, and 2008.

yes james. its true. the socialist agenda is taking over. soon we will be living in the communist states of america. and we will strip away your rights, take all your money, and make you get a bar code on the back of your neck. All hail Obama, the socialist dictator anti-christ come to rid us of freedom and democracy. wahahahahaha.

oh shut your mouth and tune back onto fox news why don't yeah?

Fred wrote:
"you just gave away the white house, a woman's right to choose, checks on corporations, individual rights to privacy (because 2 new justices will be with scalia, roberts, thomas, and alito), by nominating the most liberal individual in the party's history."

Oh, and yes, Fred did also write about the "anti-war left socialists."

Psst Fred. Did you ever attend public school? Do you like being protected by the neighborhood police and know that there are those who will help you put out a house fire?

You're a socialist, pal.

But I actually came on to pose a question to you. You refer to Obama's being the most liberal candidate. Could you please show me some facts to back up your assertion.

There are groups that rate politicians on their liberalism and conservatism, perhaps you can point me to the documentation that shows that Obama is the most liberal candidate in history.

And one more thing. Considering the unmitigated disaster that conservatives have inflicted on this country in the 21st century, you have the audacity to make 'liberal' the ugly word?

I think you have more to fear being branded a conservative.

Please, I beg of you, don't repeat the claptrap that Hillary Clinton didn't try hard enough in the caucuses. Virtually EVERY CAUCUS that had a poll prior to their caucus contest had Hillary Clinton either leading or tied with Barack Obama.

So whether or not Hillary Clinton chose to treat the caucuses as "The Great Race" or "Survivor" becomes a NON-ISSUE if the state does not fairly reflect the popularity of each state.

It's as if the entire news media has been brainwashed into accepting this idiotic premise that if someone gets SIGNIFICANTLY more delegates than the polls were showing, that they "earned it", fair reflection be damned.

let's not change a freedom for a dictatoral order as obama would like to do. our voting rights will be made into voting requirements enforced with a bayonet if obama, opahra & their masters from the middle east have their way!!!

I pray we come to our senses before we loose this election. There is protocol in Government- it was established for a reason. "Play by no rules" Politician- Obama. Is it arrogance or inexperience? The end justifies the means. He got his two running mates disqualified when he was running for Senator- so he ran un-opposed.dirty Chicago Politics! I will vote for HRC for president. OR HRC for VP- Mr. Uniter- it is up to you. Hillary Clinton is the only VP that can pull your poll numbers over the top. Any thing less you will loose to McCain.


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About the Columnist
A veteran foreign and national correspondent, Andrew Malcolm has served on the L.A. Times Editorial Board and was a Pulitzer finalist in 2004. He is the author of 10 nonfiction books and father of four. Read more.
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