- The Washington Times - Tuesday, September 13, 2016

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

There’s no doubt about it, Hillary Clinton had a rough weekend. Between calling half of Mr. Trump’s supporters “deplorable,” and then being caught on video stumbling into her van in the middle of a 9/11 memorial ceremony, Mrs. Clinton has Democrats worried.

Veteran journalist Cokie Roberts said on NPR’s “Morning Edition,” that Democrat insiders are “nervously beginning to whisper” about the possibility of Mrs. Clinton having to step aside. Journalist David Shuster tweeted Sunday, “Clarification from dem operatives @Hillary Clinton pneumonia: Expect emergency DNC meeting to consider replacement.”

So can Mrs. Clinton be replaced with all but 56 days to go to the general election?

Yup. And the first step is pretty easy. All that needs to happen is for officials within the Democratic National Committee to gather together and decide unilaterally on a replacement.

As Time pointed out, this has been done before, within the party.



“A few months before the 1972 presidential election, Democratic nominee George McGovern discovered that his vice presidential nominee had had multiple bouts of depression and related hospitalization,” Time wrote. “Fearing McGovern’s running unlucky mate, Thomas Eagleton, would hurt the ticket’s chance in November, The Democratic Party replaced him with a former ambassador, Sargent Shriver.”

Next question is usually about the ballot. This is where things get a bit more tricky.

Since the Democratic Party has already submitted the names Clinton-Kaine to all 50 states, each state would have to approve the change individually. For some, it may not be that big of a deal, because the ballots haven’t been printed yet, but for others — where early voting is already occurring — it may be more of an issue. It’s unclear whether a replacement on the ticket would invalidate those early votes.

However, as Time points out, in some states the electoral college is pledged to a party, not a candidate. So, if Clinton were on the ticket in one of these states, and an early vote was cast in her name, that vote would apply to whomever was her party replacement. Other states, like Michigan, however, is where electors have to support the candidate. In this case, Michigan would have to bend its rules to support the party.

Would it be tricky? Yes. Impossible, No.

But it’s all built on the assumption that Mrs. Clinton would resign from her post. Given the presidency has been a lifelong goal for her, it seems hard to imagine she’d give it up even if she were on her deathbed.

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