CLEARWATER, FLA.—There is a common-sense solution to the potentially ruinous fight over seating of the Florida and Michigan delegations to the Democratic convention. In fact, it is so apparent that it will probably never happen.
To pay for two revotes in the two decisive states, the money should come from the bulging campaign treasuries of Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. The two candidates struggling to gain the nomination without more dissension should pay for the contests.
They agreed early to play by the rules. The Democratic National Committee made it clear that Florida and Michigan would be penalized for scheduling their primaries before an agreed-on plan by the DNC.
The cries of protest from politicians of both parties in both states have a hollow ring. They knew what they were doing when they leapfrogged the DNC plan.
Of course, no one predicted then that the race would extend this far. Super Tuesday on February 5 was supposed to settle the issue.
However, it is possible now that the Democrats could go to their convention in Denver without an obvious nominee. The nation hasn't had a real dispute at the convention since the GOP meeting in 1952, although the Democrats had a last-minute settlement in 1984.
A floor dispute over seating the big delegations from Florida and Michigan is the last thing the Democrats need. The last one was in 1972 between the McGovern and Humphrey forces, over seating the California delegation. It wasn't a pretty sight.
Obama and Clinton should have the courage to face voters in a real contest in the two states. If there are more grandstanding and dilly-dallying and the question goes to Denver, we might as well inaugurate John McCain right now. It is that serious.
Democrats, the warning sign is glowing.