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TahitiNut Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-01-07 12:29 PM
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"Democratic Party excludes Michigan from national convention"
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Democratic Party excludes Michigan from national convention
Gordon Trowbridge / Detroit News Washington Bureau

The Democratic Party on Saturday barred Michigan from next summer's national convention, the expected -- and likely temporary -- punishment for holding a Jan. 15 presidential primary.

The national party's rules committee voted to ban all but a handful of Michigan officials from the Denver convention, at which the party's presidential nominee will formally be chosen. The move was widely expected -- it's the same penalty the committee handed down in August to Florida, which like Michigan is holding a January contest. Just four states -- Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada and South Carolina -- are allowed to do so under the party's calendar rules.

But there is also widespread belief, in Michigan and elsewhere, that both Michigan and Florida will eventually be allowed to attend. It is unlikely that the eventual Democratic nominee, who will have substantial control over the convention, will want to court trouble with two important general-election states.

The motion passed by the Democratic National Committee's rules and bylaws committee also gives Michigan 30 days to come into compliance by moving to Feb. 5 or later -- a path Michigan officials say they will not take.

Before punishing Michigan on Saturday, the committee approved waivers for Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina, allowing those states to move their contests earlier than their assigned dates -- and prompting accusations of inequitable enforcement of the rules from Michigan officials. All three of those states were assigned January dates that they have moved from; New Hampshire, for example, was assigned Jan. 22, but will vote on Jan. 8.

Michigan had sought a similar waiver, with officials saying they were simply fulfilling their pledge to abide by the calendar only if other states did the same. But Democratic officials rejected that plea.
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