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stupid stupid

A more quantitative example of dirty tricks

*sigh*

Obama wins just 7 of 127 at caucus

According to the general rules for the democratic caucuses, you're supposed to get a mostly proportional make-up of delegates at each level of the process, with some adjustments possible to allow for situations where there just aren't enough members of the opposition, or you're dealing with fractions etc...

The credentials committee certified that the make-up of delegates at the convention was 70%-30% in favor of Clinton. Realistically you might expect a shift of somewhere between 60-40 to 80-20 depending on who showed up and what happened with alternates being promoted etc... Well you'd think that assuming the people running the show could read English (yes that was a gratuitous insult, but I'm pissed).

The only way you can get a shift to 95%-5% is to create a situation where basically the only delegates that would ever go to Obama were in precincts like the one they highlighted in the article where he had the overwhelming majority. They (the local powers that be) weren't interested in following the rules so that you had a representative distribution of state delegates. They just wanted to win as many as they possibly could regardless of who showed up. Since Clinton had a significant majority, they completely ran over the Obama camp and ruled the way they wanted to.

For instance, they made a questionable ruling about how people were allowed to vote which affected my precinct (and I'm not sure how others fared, I wasn't able to see how the caucussing went). Originally, as we understood the rules (and as they were written[1]) you could vote for one person, period. After the votes were tallied you end up picking delegates and alternates based on who got the most votes and working your way down. This is why you have to caucus and negotiate so you work out who is voting for who and you make sure you don't split your votes so much that a better organized but smaller group takes a delegate or alternate. In our precinct, we negotiated with the Clinton folks and since they couldn't out vote us for the fourth spot (i.e. 2nd alternate), they agreed to give it to us. Not great, but with an 80-20 split in our district moving to 75-25 based on the fact that you can't divide a person ;) isn't terrible. In theory, they could have blocked us out once we lost our fifth person but they couldn't unless they were at full strength. Once they saw we were going to be stuck upstairs for a while and before it was known that we lost our fifth delegate, they went ahead and voted so that they could take all the delegates and all the alternates. They didn't even wait for all of their own delegates to get back down there so they couldn't have blocked us out. Effectively that means that if we had been down there with our 4 we could have held on to our alternate until they had their full 20... come to think of it, I'm not even sure how many of their 20 delegates they still had by that point in the day.

Later, based on Mr Anchondo's interpretations and the support from Mr. Scherr (both of whom were very vocal Clinton supporters) there was no way to get any "at large" delegates because instead of balancing the 48 at large delegates to meet the 70-30 split(something else mentioned and explained in the convention program[2]), they engineered the vote so that it went to all Clinton supporters.

And this is why I'm rather disgusted to be an El Paso Democrat today. I think it's time to rethink my affiliations. See, this is why I prefer being independent. I don't see a point in playing a game with people who would resort to these methods to cheat.




Edit: To clarify, the problem in my precinct is also that they were supposedly told (as everyone else was) that they could vote more than once for delegates and alternates. Because of that they decided we "couldn't win" and went ahead and voted. They aren't total asshats, I was just making the point that it was also in their interest to vote while we were gone since that would negate the whole negotiation and caucusing thing so they had no reason to want to wait.




[1] - 10. Election Procedure in Presidential and in Non-Presidential Years. (c) ... (2) Each Delegate present shall vote for one nominee. Those nominees equal to the number of Delegates alloted to that precinct or group of precincts who receive the highest number of votes shall be the precinct recommendations for Delegates to the State Convention. The same number of nominees next highest in the voting shall be the recommendations for Alternates to the State Convention.

[2] - 9. Balancing Delegations. (a) In selecting Delegates and Alternates at all levels, the Nominations Committee and the Convention itself shall make every effort to select persons so that the delegation as a whole shall reasonably reflect the political preferences (in non-presidential years) or the presidential preference (in presidential years) and the proportion of women, young people, and minorities present in the district or state.

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