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Epic Confusion over Maine GOP caucus (Update)

There are tons of things that I don’t understand about our political process. One of the most confusing is the the caucus. In essence, these caucuses provide an opportunity to waste an enormous amount of time for actually no benefit. Notice that the caucuses in Missouri and Maine are not binding. Therefore, the delegates can go to the convention and vote for anyone they want. What’s the point?

Late Saturday night, we found out that Mitt Romney had a narrow victory over Ron Paul. There was some head scratching. It didn’t seem to make any sense. As a matter of fact, this whole GOP primary doesn’t make any sense, but I’m jumping ahead of myself. Why did Ron Paul do so well in Maine? On the other hand, why did Romney do so poorly? Over the last several days, other questions have arisen. In several cities and towns where Americans went and legally caucused, stood in line and registered their votes, for some reason, votes have not been counted. One county had a large amount of snowfall and was granted permission to hold their election this week. They got an official okay from the state Republican Party. Now, they find out that their votes will not to be counted in the overall tally.

Rachel did a great segment on this last night:

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

With the questions about Maine and the complete three-ring circus that was the Iowa Republican caucus, there is a negative light cast not only on the Republican Party, in specific, but on the American electoral process, in general. It is hard for me to imagine that Republicans are that much worse at counting votes than are Democrats. Why do we have so much variation between how caucuses are run? How does the state choose between a caucus and a primary? It seems to me that the sheer randomness of how any given state chooses to do things is wholly inefficient. I just don’t see how this is good for the American people. Whether you’re Republican, Democrat, Libertarian, environmentalist (Green party), Independent or whatever, I just don’t see how this arbitrary craziness is truly going to represent our votes in the end.

What are your thoughts?

Update: Just to add fuel to the fire, the executive committee of the Maine GOP met on 2/16 and released the following statement – We are morons and we’re sorry that we screwed everything up. Oh, no, I’m sorry. That’s my translation of their statement. Here’s their real statement.

“We have worked diligently to contact town chairmen throughout Maine to reconfirm the results of their individual caucuses. These totals once confirmed will be posted on the Maine Republican Party Web site.

All Republicans are keenly aware of the intense interest in the results of the Maine Republican Party Presidential Preference Poll. In fact, I have had numerous conversations with Senate President Kevin Raye and Washington County Commissioner Chris Gardner regarding their concerns that the Washington County poll results be included in our final tally. As a result of these conversations I called a meeting of the Executive Committee to discuss this matter.

The results of the Washington County caucus will be reviewed at the March 10 Republican State Committee Meeting. The Executive Committee voted unanimously to recommend to the State Committee that they include the results in the final tally for the Presidential Preference Poll as their caucus had been scheduled to occur by the February 11 deadline, however it was postponed due to inclement weather. ”

By |2012-02-16T22:43:46-04:00February 16th, 2012|Domestic Issues, Party Politics|Comments Off on Epic Confusion over Maine GOP caucus (Update)

Maybe Clinton's Victory Isn't as Impressive as First Impression

On the DailyKos, Kubla000 had this take on Senator Hillary Clinton’s victory:

“When you’re down 179 delegates total, there is NO TIME For Momentum or Symbolism. Despite what the media is telling you, Hillary Clinton tonight Failed in West Virginia.”

Why, you may ask, is kubla000 saying Clinton lost West Virginia? Simply, tonight Clinton underperformed Senator Barack Obama’s TEN best Victories

What does tonight’s final tally look like? After reviewing the second Exit Update, tonight is going to be:

65% Clinton
32% Obama

Per the Incredible Poblano

Obama built his 179-delegate lead on much larger victories than Clinton’s 33 percent victory tonight in West Virginia, which is home to only five electoral votes. Let’s re-cap the scoreboard:

Idaho- Four electoral votes (I’m sorry, I have to inject some thing here. 92 percent of Idaho is white while 0.5 percent is black. I thought that Obama had a problem with white folks? It doesn’t look like it in Idaho).
Obama 79%
Clinton 17%
Obama +62%

Hawaii- Four electoral votes
Obama 76%
Clinton 24%
Obama +52%

Alaska- Three electoral votes
Obama 75%
Clinton 25%
Obama +50%

Washington- 11 electoral votes
Obama 68%
Clinton 31%
Obama +37%

Georgia- 15 electoral votes (Competitive with Bob Barr)
Obama 67%
Clinton 31%
Obama +36%

Colorado- Nine electoral votes
Obama 67%
Clinton 32%
Obama +35%

Minnesota- 10 electoral votes
Obama 66%
Clinton 32%
Obama +34%

And, as Poblano pointed out this morning, no Democrat has won the White House while losing Washington, D.C….

Barack Obama won Washington D.C. by 52 percent

52%…

52%…

Despite the pomp and circumstance, Clinton’s victory tonight pales in comparison to Obama’s landslides… and it’s beyond too late anyhow. Enjoy your night Senator Clinton. You did win. But you lost because you didn’t win by 52 percent. This was your ‘Most Lay-Up State’ and your margin didn’t eclipse Obama’s most ‘Favorable.’

PS: Do you recall the Virgin Islands? Clinton didn’t even make threshold there… Obama walked away with all three delegates. That’s over 70 percent.

P.P.S: I forgot Democrats Abroad
Obama: 65.8%
Clinton: 32.5%

Let’s see if Clinton out performs our ex-pats… with 20 percent in, it’s right at 33 percent

UPDATE: Per Mark Halperin, the bar was clearly set at 68 percent.  With 19percent in, it’s at 63 percent– the 33 percent that Poblano predicted.

Percentage of votes that Clinton has to get in West Virginia for the press to take notice and assign it some meaning: 68

By |2008-05-13T23:27:43-04:00May 13th, 2008|Election 2008, Race|Comments Off on Maybe Clinton's Victory Isn't as Impressive as First Impression
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