‘Chaos’ threatens DNC delegate solution

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Of the panel members, nine are neutral, 13 are Clinton supporters and eight are Obama supporters.

The Clinton camp said it wants a full seating of the delegates from the two rogue states, even though the senator from New York once said the Michigan contest would not “count for anything.”

Clinton senior adviser Harold Ickes, a member of the rules panel, yesterday reserved the right to appeal the decision to the DNC’s more obscure Credentials Committee. “That’s a bridge to cross when we come to that particular stream,” he said.

Mr. Plouffe said Mr. Obama is “open to some compromise that’s fair,” and that it is not fair to fully seat the delegations.

“Any compromise is clearly going to benefit Senator Clinton,” Mr. Plouffe said, calling that position a “major concession” and “not an insignificant gesture” aimed at party unity.

He said the campaigns fought “fiercely” in the Ohio and Pennsylvania contests, which resulted in fewer net delegates than Saturday’s decision could award Mrs. Clinton.

Most Democrats agreed that Saturday’s ruling will end the uncertainty surrounding the two swing states but said is unlikely to deliver the nomination to Mrs. Clinton, since she trails the senator from Illinois in the delegate count.

Team Clinton thinks her expected win in Puerto Rico on Sunday coupled with an electability argument may persuade superdelegates to take her side and make her the nominee. By saying she has won more votes, Mrs. Clinton is dismissing Mr. Obama’s wins in caucus states.

The Obama camp has dismissed the popular vote argument, saying Clinton aides are moving the goal posts in the battle for delegates.

Both campaigns acknowledged the so-called “magic number” of delegates needed to clinch the nomination will change after the Saturday decision. Under current party rules, Mr. Obama is 46 delegates away from earning the Democratic nod.

Mr. Plouffe said the resolution Saturday will help Mr. Obama pivot toward challenging the presumptive Republican nominee, Sen. John McCain of Arizona.

“The general election will be here before we know it,” he said. “The thing you can never have enough of in politics is time. The clock is ticking here.”

About the Author

Christina Bellantoni

Christina Bellantoni is a White House correspondent for The Washington Times in Washington, D.C., a post she took after covering the 2008 Democratic presidential campaigns. She has been with The Times since 2003, covering state and Congressional politics before moving to national political beat for the 2008 campaign. Bellantoni, a San Jose native, graduated from UC Berkeley with ...

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