Credential Fight

I’m currently reading the “2008 Call for the Democratic National Convention” (PDF), after reading two posts by Marc Ambinder about it. The important sections appear to be

VII(J)(1), VII(J)(2), VII(J)(3), and VII(J)(4):

J. Credentials Committee and Procedures for Challenging Delegates or State Delegations:
1. The Credentials Committee shall determine and resolve questions concerning the seating of delegates and alternates to the Convention pursuant to the resolution entitled the “Relationship Between the 2008 Rules of Procedure of the Credentials Committee and the 2008 Delegate Selection Rules,” which includes the “Rules of Procedure of the Credentials Committee of the 2008 Democratic National Convention” hereby approved and adopted by the Democratic National Committee, and set forth in full in the Appendix to this Call. The committee shall report to the Convention for final determination and resolution of all such questions. This committee does not have authority over the allocation and distribution of convention credentials, including passes for delegates, alternates, guests or press.
2. Challenges to the seating of any delegate or alternate shall be in accordance with the Rules of Procedure of the Credentials Committee. Any challenge to the seating of a delegate or alternate that is not made in conformity with these rules shall be deemed waived.
3. Upon the request of members representing twenty percent (20%) of the total votes of the Credentials Committee, a minority report shall be prepared for distribution to the Convention delegates and alternates as part of the committee’s report; provided, however, that no member elected to the committee by a state delegation may join in such request as to a proposed minority report relating to a credentials challenge to any delegate or alternate from his or her state. The committee staff shall assist in the preparation of such report.
4. The report of the Credentials Committee and any minority reports shall be distributed to all delegates, alternates, and the public as soon as practicable after their adoption.

and VIII(B)(1) and VIII(B)(2):

B. Temporary Roll:
1. The Secretary of the Democratic National Committee shall determine a Temporary Roll of delegates to the Convention which shall consist only of those persons selected and certified as delegates in accordance with the Rules and pursuant to this Call, unless a credentials contest shall have arisen with respect to any such person(s), in which case the Secretary shall include on the Temporary Roll the name of the credentials contestant recommended for inclusion by the Credentials Committee in its report.
2. Persons whose names are included on the Temporary Roll of delegates shall be permitted to vote on all matters before the Convention until after the adoption of the report of the Credentials Committee; provided that no person shall be permitted to vote on his or her credentials contest.

What this boils down to:

There are two sets of “superdelegates.” There are automatic delegates to the Credentials Committee described in VII(J) and largely appointed by Howard Dean. There are a different set of automatic delegates to the Democratic convention described in VIII(B) that everyone has been talking to. Both might be able to use the VII(J) vote to constrain the VIII(B) vote. For instance, consider if Obama’s lead is small enough, or his credibility is shot enough, that he fears superdelegates who would ultimately vote for him wished to see Michigan and Florida seated. In which case, he could use his VII(J) delegates and Democratic Chairman Howard Dean’s superdelegaets to sit phony Michigan and Florida delegations. When Clinton’s delegates’ minority report is challenged on the floor, his phony Michigan delegation could vote in favor of this phony Florida delegation, and then his phony Florida delegation could vote in favor of his phony Michigan delegation.

Assuming the votes and caucuses end without a clear winner, then nothing new will be really known until after the Olympics in August. Nothing firm will happen between the June Puerto Rico vote and the August convention. It could be an interesting summer.

Jesse Jackson and the Typical White Person

I give Barack Obama credit for knowing that he’s being outcompeted by Hillary, and that he needs to run out the clock. After Obama’s disaster of a speech, he defends his comparison between his anti-American pastor and his grandmother:

“The point I was making is not that my grandmother harbors any racial animosity. She doesn’t. But she is a typical white person who, if she sees somebody on the street that she doesn’t know, there’s a reaction that’s been bred into our experiences that don’t go away and that sometimes come out in the wrong way and that’s just the nature of race in our society.

What’s weird, of course, is that his grandmother appears to be parroting one of Jesse Jackson’s line:

Jesse Jackson is traveling the country with a tough anti-crime message that he is delivering to inner-city youngsters. In Chicago he said, “There is nothing more painful to me at this stage in my life than to walk down the street and hear footsteps and start thinking about robbery — then look around and see somebody white and feel relieved.

If I wanted to be snarky, I would write “Does Barack Obama think that Jesse Jackson is a ‘typical black person.'” But of course, the problem with Obama’s actions over the past few weeks is he’s barely thinking at all. Clinton has him frozen in strategic paralysis: Unable to advance or retreat, Obama now hopes that outside forces make Clinton go away.

Too bad.

I don’t want my country damaged like the Democratic Party has been damaged

I want Clinton to lose the Democratic nomination because I know she will do to the country what she is already doing to her party: cause it great harm. This video of Keith Olberman, courtesy of MyDD, is an example of the intra-party feud going on among the Democrats. I have no doubt the fight will become just as vicious among Americans if Hillary wins the Democratic nomination.

And then there’s this:

Rasmussen Reportsâ„¢: The most comprehensive public opinion coverage ever provided for a presidential election.
Obama, on the other hand, earns solid support from African-American voters but attracts only 36% of white voters in a match-up with McCain.

Hillary’s doing her best to set the stage for the most racially polarized election in American history, a “blacks v. everyone else” affair where Hillary’s zombie coalition of uneducated whites, latinos, and asians leads to Democratic defeat. As with her recent campaigning in Michigan (softly encouraging Floridians and Michiganers to stay home if their delegates are not seated), Hillary’s laying landmines to convince the Democratic Party they cannot possible win without her as the nominee.

Hillary would probably be a good commander and chief — better than Obama, if they are both to be trusted. Likewise, she’s useful for the harm she’s causing to the Democratic Party. But as a general election candidate she would be awful, and for her the general election would never end.

Vote Democratic Progressive Party

Until the Taiwan Crisis I was hoping that the Chinese National Party (KMT) prevailed in the Taiwanese elections. Eight years of the Taiwanese Nationalist “Democratic Progressive Party” (DPP) had helped China “grow up” as it came to Taiwanese-Chinese relations. It appeared that Beijing knew the best approach to take if she wanted her one-country-two-systems policy to come to pass. Plus, DPP was increasingly desperate, and bringing up non-issues (the KMT candidate has a US green card) in its attempt to shore up votes.

seal_of_democratic_progressive_party_taiwan.jpg

However, the Tibet Riots have thrown light on how China’s actual “One Country Two Systems” policy with certain provinces actually work. The Tibetan Protesters are helping the world embarrass China for actions that are not appropriate for a Great Power. A DPP victory, or at least a crippled KMT win, would further embarrass the Communist party.

China Tensions Sway Taiwan Election – New York Times
China’s suppression of protests in Tibet and missteps by the opposition Nationalist Party have made the Taiwanese presidential election on Saturday an unexpectedly close race. What once seemed to be an insuperable lead for the Nationalist candidate, Ma Ying-jeou, has narrowed considerably, politicians and political analysts said.

A narrow victory for Mr. Ma would give him a weaker mandate for his goal of closer economic relations with mainland China. An actual defeat for Mr. Ma, now a possibility although not yet the most likely outcome, would be a serious setback for Beijing officials, who have cultivated relations with the Nationalist Party, or Kuomintang, over the past four years.

Mainland Chinese officials loathe Taiwan’s current president, Chen Shui-bian, and his party, the Democratic Progressive Party, for pursuing greater political separation from the mainland. Beijing has been wary of the party’s candidate, Frank Hsieh, even though Mr. Hsieh has repeatedly voiced much more willingness than Mr. Chen to allow increased Taiwanese investment on the mainland and more cross-straits transportation links.

If Mr. Hsieh were to win, it could be perceived in Beijing as a high price to have paid for forcefully putting down demonstrations in Tibet.

For Taiwan, for Tibet, for China, and for the future: Vote DPP.