Thursday, February 07, 2008

Dean Says Convention May Be Brokered

The possibility of a brokered Democrat convention does not please Howard Dean, the Chairman of the Democrat Party. “The idea that we can afford to have a big fight at the convention and then win the race in the next eight weeks, I think, is not a good scenario," Dean said in an interview with NY1 television.”

“I think we will have a nominee sometime in the middle of March or April. But if we don't, then we're going to have to get the candidates together and make some kind of an arrangement,” said Dean, “because I don't think we can afford to have a brokered convention -- that would not be good news for either party."

In a brokered convention, the presidential nominee would be decided on the floor of the national convention, an event that had not occurred in decades. In pre-primary days, such decisions lay in the hand of party power brokers adept at manipulating delegates. But the old boys in the smoke filled rooms have been long gone, and it is not at all certain that the party chairman has enough muscle to “persuade” delegates fiercely committed to their candidates to switch votes, especially since delegates are now committed under a primary system that does not allow for brokering.

Dean may very well say “we’re going to have to get the candidates together and make some kind of arrangement,” but in a primary dominant structure, candidates can always bolt and run on an independent ticket, taking with them their voters if not their pledged delegates.

It’s a problem Huston.

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