Friday, April 04, 2008

Opportunity Lost

Die already. Tired of playing from behind. Figure it out, divide 'em up, just get it over with.

Michigan Democrats are expected to decide Friday against holding a do-over presidential primary election, The Associated Press has learned.

The state party's executive committee is expected to hold a meeting by phone to vote on a statement saying any kind of election to replace the results of the January 15 primary no longer is possible, according to Democratic leaders who spoke on condition of anonymity because the discussions so far have been private.

This isn't about rehashing what went before, or to assign blame, or to announce yet another nasty but now somehow boring knife-fight between Clinton and Obama supporters - this one is about opportunity lost.

Because, God forbid, we wouldn't want this to happen-

Democratic voter registration in Pennsylvania has hit a record of more than 4 million voters.

“It’s kind of incredible,” Harry A. VanSickle, the state’s elections commissioner, tells The Caucus as his office prepares to post the new numbers. “It’s the first time we know of that a party in Pennsylvania has gone over 4 million.”

But what of those meddlesome Republicans?

Oh, I don't know, maybe campaign for their vote?

Obama is running radio ads in Pittsburgh and Philadelphia to urge students, independents and Republicans -- three key constituencies to keep the race close -- to register as Democrats before the deadline.

"She does have a lot of advantages and we recognize that," said Axelrod." "We know we have an uphill fight there. But we're going to fight for every vote and every delegate."

Seems to work, too.

Mr. VanSickle said he has told elections officials in the state’s 67 counties to prepare for a massive turnout on primary day. “We’ve told them, whatever you’re expecting, increase it by 30 or 40 percent,” he said.

More than 120,000 new voters joined the rolls since Jan. 1. In addition, more than 86,000 others switched from other parties to register as Democrats, while only 12,000 switched registration to become Republicans.

Some of the biggest numbers of those who switched to become Democrats were recorded in the Republican suburbs of Philadelphia, which are likely to be an important battleground in the primary. Analysts say suburbanites who registered Democratic are probably either opponents of the war in Iraq who want to vote for Senator Barack Obama or professional women who want to support Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton.

While all these party committee people are busy trying to untangle this mess, they might want to make some plans about how they are going to approach voters such as those above. Counting on the Michigan Republican Party to alienate them won't be enough.

Still believe the Democrats are pretty much a lock, but sure would like to see some movement towards apology for this mess and attention for those voters that might be on the fence.