Thursday, March 06, 2008

Clinton Can't Be Serious

Good lord.

Hillary Clinton is now calling, rather urgently I might add, for the results of the Florida and Michigan primaries to stand, even though the candidates agreed to not campaign in those states, and even though neither John Edwards nor Barack Obama were on the Michigan ballot.

I used to think Clinton would be a reasonably runner up to Obama. Now, no. Not with her suggesting that the results of those improperly conducted and unfairly contested primaries should have any say in the outcome.

Party and governmental officials in Florida and Michigan are themselves to blame. Surely, the voters are not to blame, as they were not in a position to insist that the two states move their primaries up the calendar, ahead of the open season for primaries, which began February 5th.

Howard Dean is not at fault. He is the good cop, having tried all along to get all 50 states to abide by the rules. Now, he's saddled with a historic mess. It's up to Michigan and Florida to fix it, at their own cost.

All of this shows how urgently we need a more reasonably, less impetuous primary calendar. The current "system" looks like bullies and babies throwing sand in the sandbox. As it is, whatever maturity is shown early on by the campaigns and the electorate is reduced to childish play by the first day of spring.

There is no reason the primaries and caucuses should be going on in January anyway. And early February even seems too early to me. Why not contract the whole thing, starting on Presidents' Day? How about if only four states get to go in February, leaving the rest to March through May? The campaigns would be less costly. The news media would have less dead time to fill with hype and dirt. The weather would be better. And, I believe, the candidates and the voters/caucus goers would be less confused, better prepared -- and better behaved.


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