Howard Dean On Face The Nation: Can Mail-in Ballots Solve The Florida/Michigan Problem?

Howard Dean was on Face the Nation on Sunday and discussed what the DNC could do to try and help get Florida and Michigan another chance to seat th

Howard Dean was on Face the Nation on Sunday and discussed what the DNC could do to try and help get Florida and Michigan another chance to seat their delegates. He's in a tough position because he's got to follow the rules as is, but you know that they are trying to work out a compromise between the campaigns so it can be fixed before the convention. And I'm sick of seeing Gov. Crist being interviewed on teevee and throwing his two cents into the process when--you know---he's a Republican with an agenda.

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SCHIEFFER: Well, Senator Levin is talking this morning, Senator Nelson has been talking about some sort of a mail-in process. How would you do that?

Gov. DEAN: Well, that's actually a process that's been used elsewhere, and there's precedent for having a so-called do-over. DC had to do it, I think Delaware had to do it because other states have jumped ahead in the past, too, and then decided--thought better of it later on. But that's actually a very good process, and it's one that we discussed early on when we were negotiating with Florida, hoping to head this--all this stuff off. Every delegate gets a--gets a--gets a ballot in the mail. I mean, excuse me, every voter gets a ballot in the mail. It's comprehensive, you get to vote if you're in Iraq or in a nursing home. It's not a bad way to do this. Oregon does their general elections by a vote by mail.

SCHIEFFER: Well...

Gov. DEAN: So it's a good way, and it's a great party-building exercise because then you know who's active and who votes and so forth.

SCHIEFFER: Well, who would pay for that, governor? That seems to be the issue.

Gov. DEAN: Well, that is a problem. Senator Nelson and I've--and I have had some discussions which could lead to something fruitful, which is that the Florida party would be able to raise money. They can take unlimited amount of money in Florida. I don't know if that's possible in Michigan or not. And there's some discussion about that, too. The two things I think that are established are the state isn't going to pay for it, because their governor, who's a McCain supporter, has said they won't pay for it. And the Democratic National Committee is not going to pay for it because right now our job is to tell the American people about Senator McCain's record on Iraq and the deficits and so forth, and convince the American
people that our nominee is better than Senator McCain.


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SCHIEFFER: Well...

Gov. DEAN: And that's what we're going to be using our resources for.

SCHIEFFER: I understand that, governor, but as the head of the party, you're just going to sit and wait until the states tell you what to do? What if they decide to do nothing? Does that mean their delegations won't be seated?

Gov. DEAN: Well, that's--not necessarily. There's two things they can do. One is to have this kind of an alternative process, which we're talking about now, and the other is simply to appeal to the Credentials Committee at the--at the convention, which is controlled, actually, by the delegates, not by me. And they can do a lot of things at the Credentials Committee. I think it's very unlikely that Florida and Michigan, given how close this race is, are going to be seated as-is. But everybody's going to work very hard to find a compromise within the rules that's fair to both campaigns that will allow Florida and Michigan, in the end, to be seated.

Read the full transcript here.

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