Monday, March 28, 2011

Florida Primary Madness 2012 Version

In 2008, I ripped the Republican Party, Florida Democratic Party and the legislature were moving up the primary. Not only did it show bad judgement; it reinforced the national impression that Florida could not be trusted with federal elections. There was overwhelming bipartisan support in the Florida House and Senate to move up the primary. Both state parties moved up their primaries.

Former FDP chair Karen Thurman moved up the primary.

MIAMI, Fla.-Florida Democrats have embraced an early primary on Jan. 29 despite the national party's threat to penalize them by taking away half their delegates to the national convention.

Karen Thurman, the party chairwoman, and Sen. Bill Nelson said Monday that the leadership had voted unanimously to accept the date. The state party has to submit a plan to the Democratic National Committee by Friday

Nelson then cowardly blamed it on Republicans.

"It says Florida's earlier primary — set by the Republican Legislature and governor — would affect the sequence of contests in Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada and South Carolina."

Charlie Crist and the Republicans in the legislature certainly deserve their share of blame. My problem is Democrats blaming Republicans for moving up their primaries. The final say on when the party's primary is held is by the state guidelines. Federal election laws make clear state parties must obey the election rules set by the national parties.

Reality is starting to hit Republicans. Republican Party of Florida chairman Dave Bitner is begging the RNC to not strip Florida of half its delegates.

“I’m trying to get them to change the penalties,” Bitner said in a interview last week in Charlotte County.

My guess is the veto proof Republican legislature will blame Democrats.

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