Category Archives: Cleveland

UPDATED: SCORE: Cleveland 400, Philadelphia 11

Update: A friend from Cleveland has informed me that the arrest number I heard for Cleveland on the radio is incorrect: rather it was 23 arrests. He was kind enough to send the list of those arrested, which you can read here. I regret the error. 

In this case, the lower number wins. There were 400 23 total arrests in Cleveland, and only 11 in Philadelphia for the RNC and DNC, respectively.

I wasn’t in Cleveland, and so can’t speak to it, but here in Philly, the cops, State Troopers, Homeland Security, Secret Service, and TSA people were really great. It was incredibly hot, and the Philadelphia police, as of Tuesday night, had given out 110,000 bottles of water to protesters and marchers. The idea was to keep order while still respecting people’s constitutionally-guaranteed right to protest. I spoke to many officers walking by their areas. No one had an attitude, and all they cared about was safety for all: the attendees, the locals going about their business, the protesters, and their own.

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Convention Committees

While most of the media attention is currently focused on whom might or might not still be in consideration for vice-president, a key activity over the next several weeks will be the work of the convention committees.

Because the Democrats give candidates a key role in selecting their delegates (and here in Missouri we had a bit of an uproar at our state convention due to the Sanders campaign exercising its right to trim the number of candidates for at-large delegates), the Rules Committee and the Credentials Committee tend not to be that important.  The fight this year was in the Platform Committee which wrapped up its work yesterday in Orlando.  There were several changes to the draft platform adopted at the full committee meeting in Orlando, and the revised draft has not yet been posted on the convention’s website (which does have the original version of the draft platform.)  There were some issues on which the committee had significant splits between Clinton and Sanders delegates.  It is unclear if any of these splits will lead to a minority report and debates on the floor.

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Vice-Presidential Selection — Republicans

In the old days, the presidential nomination was often unsettled until balloting began at the convention.  Under those rules, the winning candidate typically announced his preferred running mate on the morning of the last day of the convention.  Since 1984, with each party having a presumptive nominee heading into convention, the norm has been to name the preferred running mate before the convention, most often in the week before the convention.  Based on that history, Trump should name his VP pick sometime next week.

Right now, Trump’s pick may come down to who is willing to accept the nomination that is a viable pick.  Every time the press speculates on a candidate who might actually improve Trump’s chances, that candidate withdraws their name from consideration (most recently Bob Corker and Jodi Ernst).

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GOP finally gets access to Quicken Loans arena for 2016 convention

The Cavs are gone:

“LeBron, good luck in the series,” Mr. Trump said the other day as he noted the predicament with a sense of resignation. “Of course, the longer it goes, the less time we have. But that’s O.K.”

Mr. Trump will have only four weeks to convert the sports arena into a red, white and blue-decked theater for his political ambitions. Usually, the Republican National Committee likes to allow campaigns six weeks to prepare, and at this point in 2012, Mitt Romney’s campaign had been in place in its arena for weeks. Republican officials, though, said they planned to move quickly. Continue Reading...

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GOP convention preparations to finally start tomorrow after 2 week delay

We’ve discussed in the past the issues with holding a convention in an arena with a successful basketball team. Well, with the Cleveland Cavaliers getting the NBA finals to a 6th game, being held tonight in Cleveland, the RNC will not get the keys to the Quicken Loans Arena until tomorrow morning, leaving just 4 weeks to prepare the arena before the GOP convention starts on July 18. Of course, the RNC has known about this possibility ever since Cleveland made the bid, but it wasn’t until Monday night’s upset win by the Cavaliers over the Golden State Warriors in Game 5 that the worst case scenario had come to past. (Actually 2nd worst – if the Cavs had had home-court advantage, the RNC might not have had access until Monday).

Basketball fans, of course, know that the Democrats faced no such concerns in Philadelphia.

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Delegate Math — Week of May 9

With Donald Trump being the last Republican standing, delegate math on the Republican side is almost meaningless.  (Of course with early voting, some segments of votes have already been cast and some segment of voters tend to vote against the presumptive nominee.)  On May 10, the Republicans will have primaries in Nebraska (thirty-six delegates on winner-take-all basis) and West Virginia (thirty-one directly elected delegates — three in each district and twenty-two state-wide.  There are some weird restrictions on the twenty-two state-wide delegates that could distort the results if voters do not understand the rules).  Trump still needs 223 more delegates to clinch the nomination.  As such, he will probably not officially clinch the nomination until June 7, but it would take some very bizarre results between now and June 7 to stop Trump from getting the nomination.  In the upcoming weeks, I am sure there will be several posts on this site on what the nomination of Trump means for this year’s elections and the future of the Republican Party.

On the Democratic side, counting superdelegates, Hillary Clinton is approximately 189 delegates short of clinching the nomination.  The main event this week is the West Virginia Primary on May 10.  The delegate breakdown in West Virginia is seven delegates in both the first and second districts, six delegates for both the third district and the at-large pool, and three pledged party leader delegates.  Given votes in similar states, Bernie Sanders has a shot at getting to five delegates (64.3%) in the first and the second and four delegates in the third and at-large.  With an almost certain 2-1 split for the pledged party leaders, that would give Sanders a 20-9 advantage.

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Trump’s GOP heads to Cleveland

With John Kasich suspending his campaign today, even NBC News will now have to call Donald Trump the presumptive nominee.

We’ll keep the sidebar GOP numbers updated, but will no longer be updating the state-by-state results for the GOP.

Of course, Clinton has been the presumptive nominee for the Democrats for 2 months, but no one is allowed to call her that yet,,,

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Delegate Math: Week of May 2

As a month, May is mostly about delegate selection rather than delegate allocation.  Even on the Democratic side (where some caucus allocations will be finalized), there will be over twenty delegate selection events in various states but fewer than ten delegate allocation events.

On the Republican side, there is just one delegate allocation event — Indiana.  After a good showing this past Tuesday (Trump even apparently got 31 supporters elected as unpledged district delegates in Pennsylvania), Trump looks to have a shot at getting enough delegates to win on the first ballot.  He still needs to win fifty percent of the remaining delegates though (approximately 250).  Indiana is another winner-take-most state  — three delegates to the winner in each of the nine congressional districts and thirty to the state-wide winner.  Indiana is the last best chance for Cruz to prevent Trump from getting the nomination.   After trying to arrange a deal with Kasich and (shades of Ronald Reagan) announcing his VP candidate, Cruz has few angles left to play.  Trump is up by 6% which would likely give him 45+ delegates.  If Cruz can make a comeback (with the help of Kasich supporters), Trump is probably looking at 15 or fewer delegates.  With only around 450 delegates left after Indiana, a thirty delegate swing is a big deal.

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Primary End Game — Republicans

As April begins to turn into May, delegate counts become key.  This site has typically used the count at www.thegreenpapers.com as a good count — mostly because the Green Papers shows its work — exactly how it calculates the delegate counts.  Actually, the Green Papers has four separate counts.  What those different counts mean for the next two months is the main focus of this post.  To explain the terminology that the Green Papers uses, the Green Papers distinguishes between hard counts and soft counts.  The hard count is the actual number of delegates actually won to date.  The soft count has three components — the soft pledged count, the soft unpledged  count, and the soft total.  These components have slightly different meanings for the two parties given the difference in the rules of the two parties.  This post looks in a general sense at what these counts mean — primarily looking at the delegates from the states that have already voted — for the Republicans.

For the Republican Party, because delegates are bound by either the initial presidential preference vote or the delegate’s pledge when they ran for delegate (in certain caucus states, Illinois, and West Virginia), the hard count and the soft pledged count is, for the most part, the same for all of the candidates and differs only for uncommitted.   Soft unpledged (for the most part) represents officially uncommitted delegates who have announced their non-binding support for a candidate.  Additionally, for Colorado and Wyoming, the Green Papers treats the automatic delegates as “available” but for American Samoa, Guam, North Dakota, and the Virgin Islands, the Green Papers treat these delegates as uncommitted.  The actual status appears to be the same for both sets of automatic delegates — because there was no preference vote, these delegates are not bound to support any of the candidates.

For the Republican Party, all that truly matters for now is the hard count.   Including the automatic delegates from Colorado and Wyoming and the 54 district-level delegates from Pennsylvania, there will be 124 unbound delegates available on June 8 (128 if the original delegation from the Virgin Islands is seated by the Convention).  Of those 124 delegates, 18 will be the party leaders (party chair and RNC members) from the three states and three territories that did not hold a preference vote.  The other 106 or 110 will be the individual elected as uncommitted delegates in Colorado (4), American Samoa (6), Guam (6), North Dakota (25), Virgin Islands (2 or 6), Wyoming (1),  Louisiana (5), Oklahoma (3),  and Pennsylvania (54).  In addition to the uncommitted delegates, there are the delegates won by the other candidates.  As discussed last month, as best as can be determined, sixty-nine of these delegates are effectively unbound and another 44 could be released by the candidate to whom they are bound.  Presumably Ben Carson will release his nine delegates, but the other 35 might be kept bound if the remaining candidates are firmly opposed to Trump.  (Given the binding rules, it is hard to see how any candidate other than Trump could win on the first ballot.  If it gets to the second ballot, everything is up in the air.)  The key for unbound delegates is that tentative pledges by these delegates (including guesses as to which way these delegates are believed to be leaning) are not binding or set in stone.  Depending upon how the rest of the campaign goes, they are free to change their mind. Continue Reading...

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Delegate Math: Week of April 25

New York this past week was huge for the front runners in both parties.  For both Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, the results in New York essentially offset everything that has happened over the past several weeks.  On the Republican side, the race stands essentially where it stood on April 1 except for 223 more delegates allocated.  On the Democratic side, the race stands essentially where it stood on March 14 except for 1197 more delegates allocated.  In other words, the New York reset basically gave Trump a glimmer of hope that he can win enough delegates to get the nomination while it put Clinton back in control of the Democratic race.  This week’s primaries feature five states that comprise the rest of the Mid-Atlantic (Maryland, Delaware, and Pennsylvania) and the last two New England states (Connecticut and Rhode Island).  For both Trump and Clinton, the hope is that this week will be mostly a repeat of New York.  For Trump that hope is a necessity because he still is behind where he needs to be on the delegate count and May is a little less friendly than this week.  Clinton also faces a potentially weaker performance in May, but she is fast approaching the point where it is mathematically impossible for Sanders to catchup on the pledged delegate count (much less the popular vote count).

Starting with the Republicans, the simplest state is Delaware — 16 delegates — winner-take-all.  There has not been much (if any polling) In Delaware.  Given the polls in neighboring states, Trump looks like the favorite to win in Delaware unless the supporters of Cruz and Kasich can unite to block him.

Maryland is only a little more complex — a winner-take-most state.  Maryland has eight congressional districts and the winner in each of those districts will take three delegates while the state-wide winner will take fourteen delegates.  Polling puts Trump near 40% with Cruz and Kasich tied for second.  There are potentially some districts that Cruz or Kasich could take.  Strategic voting would probably keep Trump from getting 12 or 15 delegates. Continue Reading...

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