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tv   Book Discussion on Primary Politics  CSPAN  March 29, 2016 1:22am-2:09am EDT

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give voters scratched their head to say where did this crazy system come from? because it comes from history as well as presidential candidates over the years. every once in awhile this system breaks down with an old-fashioned contested primary. and i will read you the beginning of the books because it is an illustration of that. >> senator clinton walked into the small conference room on capitol hill wearing a her signature pantsuit. navy blue silks.
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they 22nd, 2008 and in the homestretch of the very long race of the democratic nomination along the way she had run into a phenomenon a first term senator from illinois half white and half african-american named barack obama. davis leave first called the first black president watched the black community hillary and bill had seen old friends like mexico governor richardson endorse obama. but despite many setbacks the delicate helped was close -- the delegate count was close she had a strong argument where she was a
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strong candidate but again she needed delegates. one week later hillary clinton and did her presidential race in front of hundreds of supporters in washington d.c. hers was not the first presidential campaign and could not be thou last which is a topic of this book. so what i call the good old days when parties control the nominations. we forget some of our great presidents eisenhower end at eisenhower were nominated in convention. nobody voted for these guys.
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with rose and though it felt in dwight d. eisenhower and kennedy. the object today is a save of their day to accumulate of a majority of delegates but there the similarities within. from the nomination today to this strategy of days gone because the system is so different. and magic roosevelts confusion to hear people talk about momentum in february. in roosevelt's day that
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described his behavior at the convention itself. imagine eisenhower's reaction as giving up his job as the majority leader four years before the up presidential election. imagine how all of these men would react in which two senior democratic senators joe biden and chris dodd 70 years in the united states congress. because all the attention and energy were consumed by the first lady and a first term african-american senator.
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so the point is the electoral college is still very much the same as it has been throughout history but between 1968 and '72 the democratic party was part and parcel of a huge reform system to reform the nomination. the proximate cause of those reforms of the anti-war democrats of lyndon and minorities that they were cut out of the action famously categorized as old white men with cigars simply was not representative of the party so between 1968 and 72 and 76 o whole series of conditions were appointed
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and i write about these in the book and they fundamentally changed the nomination system from 1832 from 68 that is a big speed and. think of it this way, presidential candidates knew how to do this. after 68 the world change. the democrats changed inadvertently because in that period of time democrats were still a strong party throughout the country with the remains of the new deal coalition so lot of legislatures are in democratic control so as the
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democrats and the legislatures they created a primary for the republican as well. so what we have during this period of time is the transformation of the old system to the new system. and that was funny. goldwater in '64 has the end of the republican establishment but to win the convention even while rockefeller is winning the primary. but the world really did change this period of time. so understanding that change let me talk about a couple of features of this current
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system that has remained more or less the same from 72 through today. to help us understand what that is about. first of all, let me say this is a system in which sequence matters. unlike any other election of the american political system this is a series of elections. hot, there are quite straightforward and they are picking delegates does he get to the convention. because entered into a contest with those first candidates one of my
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chapters is called sequencers his strategy because with that a presidential race there are campaign operatives looking at this calendar and what is the sequence of the events? where can we win and ed white -- where might we lose? if you put together enough delegates for the convention. to the surprise of skilled jackson who did not understand and winning by a surprise victory in the iowa caucuses. a lot of people ask me why i want then to new hampshire first? they're always early it is
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justin the old system and didn't matter. sequence to the matter. under the new rules first of all, the rule was the first step in the nomination process has to be the same time in the same place throughout this state in people have to indicate who they were for. but suddenly the sleepy caucasus they used to collect these delegates to the convention were turned into the functional equivalent of a primary. so reporters could go there and observe each caucus and
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could declare a winner of the iowa caucuses. jimmy carter got that with the first step in as they converged on iowa. but the new hampshire primary long time but they paid much attention and from time to time it was important but closely for what it signaled to the party elites so for instance
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harry truman did not do well ted johnson did not do well. and he decided he would not run for reelection so that was the extent but watch out though whole system becomes public the fed bladder's is momentum ended this instance is that success or failure impacts floaters behavior and don and don it goes. some republicans and some democrats dropped out of the race and say i cannot golan
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and be out of the race. the other thing that happens is is set of looking at space new hampshire or iowa the public knew of the press will pay attention and to the delegate count so they are awarded sole mathematics plays a role in rounding rule that play in each state all the sudden makes the big big difference but reagan's
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team in 1980 did at some point in the spring they had to pay attention to who had the most delegates. said they did him a favor. i'm sorry 76. not to 80. he will not do well in the state. and he will probably get beat. but the general would have got all of the delegates so how about awarding your delegates proportionally?
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subway losing the state teeone the delegates. so they would have a huge a vintage so barack obama went right to new york state to target all african american districts understanding treacly he can get a delicate but this brings me to an important point after the first contest this is my this state-by-state contest. it is an 400 and 35 congressional districts because that is where they are awarded so you can go on the republican side and the
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republicans can this is daybed pick up delegates this is how romney won. he did have many victories and tell april but yet he was a strong enough candidate with enough backing and was picking up delegates and that is the name of the game if we end up with a tight race of the mid march we will start to see the delegate counts. and that brings me to the chapter of the convention. every four years just as people asked they also asked to conventions really matter?
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the audience was fairly elderly and will bin said now i understand. she said sanders didn't like conventions aeronautics citing any more. when i was a girl they were really exciting. people gathered around a television or radio and listened to all four days. put the reason why is there all the backroom machen nation's taking place two years before it is it a new phenomenon we just didn't see it.
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so tune the surprise of the press corps there is a little bit of the relationship by the republican convention they realized they had been taken over by the goldwater conservatives and that remains a remarkable story of the old system to be taken from the ground up so do conventions matter anymore? mostly we say they don't because that was provided in the primary they don't change very much.
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in with the 1980 democrats. and the person who won the primary cause stock but that does not mean that the brokered conventions are completely gone. is an entirely possible that nobody walks into their convention with the majority that it is split first to have the balance in the brokered convention in the old days they used to happen quite frequently of the
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essence the 24 convention it was unusual in the old days now because they sort it out and it doesn't happen anymore. so i had asked isn't there a more rational way to do this? why don't we have a national primary? there is the tie-in of smart ideas out there with a better way to do this. when it comes to the nomination process nobody is really in charge. 153 separate political bodies have something to say.
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who are they? passing campaign finance law. and they have a lot to say about this. with 50 state democratic committees and for good measure 50 state legislatures. will they all agree? no. [laughter] if it is more rational we will do that. and they all have the piece of the puzzle that is the fundamental problem y n2016 edits as complex and
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differentiated. and i will take some questions. >> is this when the delegates were not bound to follow the role and now they are? >> the biggest change but the rules said that the primary and the delegates have to be bound by the outcome of the primary. if mcgovern wanted delegates it was expected that 50 percent would be for mcgovern. there was the challenge from illinois.
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because jesse jackson took the illinois delegation the reflected the results of the primary. and had a telling gate -- a delegation. in in the first is who will be seated. it was unclear in the long run with george mcgovern but it just showed how much things were changing. >> the delegates would do whatever they wanted to do? >> all the time. constantly.
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the role they 16 primaries alien to most for called you the contest which means they had no bearing. the western states were more progressive but by and large they were disconnected. >> a lot of times you don't choose them and told the nominee and more with the final results. and of how much of an impact. >> that is a really good question.
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i will answer in two ways. first of all, they almost always reduce the field. please feel have worked for candidates. so we went on to new hampshire. but the second way to look at that in the early contest a question and of expectation it isn't always the winner of the up popular vote. in this may be that worse we have ever seen in the presidential campaign.
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and then to come in second and people expected clinton to be dead and then is determined to be the comeback kid so let's go to the new hampshire primary there is all sorts of expectations welcome at the polls is a difference of 10 points from what we expect to happen to what happened. and with the big impact and
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how the kid a is perceived to the voters in the subsequent states coming from iowa and new hampshire so the delegates really don't matter. though later states have large numbers of delegates. >> what is next? does that really show? >> so what point do we
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really see this race? we will be iowa and new hampshire south carolina and and those four races that are sanctioned and one of the funny things to realize the democrats and republicans cannot agree on the color of this guy. and there is general agreement and then go to march 1st there were a lot of states that day so the day after super tuesday is what the race looks like with a lot of delegates to
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send -- chosen but then as we get into april from the mid-atlantic there is another delegate count. so somewhere between march march 1st and attacks day in april you have a pretty good sense of who was winning. but if a radically goes back and forth you'll hear a lot of talk about the brokered conventions. >> diverged the bed what happens? after the convention and? >> and most is by state statute although that is not enforceable.
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in each one it gently says vote for the person you are elected to vote for. generally on the first ballot people will vote the way their states vote. then if nobody has the majority or gets the nomination because then the interesting stuff happens. a third-place candidate you can see that antipathy he has yet to see candidates number two or three or four. there is a lot half acre in the motion. >> importantly is that i
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believe that would take bathurst ballot and then it is up to the negotiating skills. >> i apologize but i would like to tell you personally how relieved i am because i am from california. to sever but he knows we have 13 percent of the nation's population and my vote has never counted. it'd hasn't for a while. one time we moved it earlier and then reread hoping we would have some influence so
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with 13 percent of us go to vote but it is completely irrelevant figure go to the general election but it doesn't matter if you are a democrat or republican you are meaningless. >> what is that about? to make you are right. welcome to d.c.. or welcome to york. a lot of states in the electoral college. added devastates end of the state's.
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with the nominating system it was always a sequential system. and then spend their time in california. and also the most populous state and where would you be? and some of those states around the great lakes. if you change the electoral college to be awarded to the winner of the national vote. so each state could decide to give the two senate votes.
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and then to get that national quota but in the neck general election process and in one instance through delegates either through electors. so i show my students photographs it is a video of the meeting of the elect doors in 2012. losec go to the state legislature to sign affidavits inveigled the mountain that is how the system works.
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the reporter for cbs for many years not a best seller but rhoda book is very interesting novel about a candidate who died in between election day and the meeting of the electoral college. not officially president so the vice president couldn't succeed and vice president running mate was a doofus and had problems so people were not happy with him. and then the electoral college where it actually matters. where suddenly these individuals and waive the
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side when there is nothing to do. and a brokered convention would be exciting and the electoral college. >> i did not hear your opening remarks what about the upcoming elections? >> it depends on how well people understand. i suspect the democratic party is monitoring this election a lot of people are ready to look at the general election.
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they are not of that infrastructure both parties have really done the job with possible infractions of violations of civil rights. but i think both parties are not a surprise. >> one more thing that i and peeved about it just occurred to me there is another thing that happens is in california because we're three hours behind the presidential race is over by five or 6:00 so many people
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decide not to go to the polls so they don't vote for irked state council member or senator or governors all elections are distorted by the process the tests what they're most interested is the presidency. >> i don't know how you fix the time so problem. [laughter]
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