The waiting game

The DNC's Rules and Bylaws Committee is more than an hour late returning from its lunch break -- could they be working on a deal?


Alex Koppelman
June 1, 2008 1:55AM (UTC)

The meeting of the Democratic National Committee's Rules and Bylaws Committee was already running well behind schedule, as the planned lunch break came hours after it was supposed to. Now, the committee members are more than an hour and a half late returning from that.

This may in fact be a good thing, a sign that the committee is working on a deal behind closed doors. That's been the speculation of Salon's reporters, at least, and there's some confirmation from the Atlantic's Marc Ambinder who writes on his blog, "Two sources with knowledge of the rules and bylaws committee's (sic) closed-door luncheon say that members of the committee are arguing over a resolution to Michigan's conundrum, having largely settled on a solution for Florida. They're settling this behind closed doors, at this point." A later report from Ambinder was not quite so encouraging, though, as he wrote:

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There is a broad consensus here that Michigan will not be settled today. Of course, it remains to be seen whether it will be not settled in private, or whether the rules committee will return to the public hearing and not settle the debate in public. Theoretically, if Michigan remains unsettled, the Clinton campaign has another shot of the apple. Of course, the apple is rotting, and it has fallen off the tree and squirrels are nesting around it.

Clearly, spirits are high among the reporters tasked to cover this meeting. At the Politico, Avi Zenilman wrote, "A colleague points out that if each of the 28 present members speak for only 10 minutes, it will still take five hours to finish." Upon reading that, I began to weep softly to myself.

Writing in from Puerto Rico, where he's reporting on tomorrow's primary there, Salon's Mike Madden says he and some other members of the press have calculated that Hillary Clinton's campaign "is playing the Willie Colon salsa anthem 'Hillary Clinton Para Presidenta' approximately 48 times per hour while on a seven-hour tour of the greater San Juan metro area. (That compares with only 20 plays of the reggaeton version, 'Con Hillary Estamos Listos.')

"The press corps is pretty sure the Michigan situation would be solved quickly if they put the song on an endless loop in the RBC meeting room and said they couldn't leave until they came up with a plan... everyone -- press, campaign staff, Secret Service -- is united in the sentiment that this song is slowly killing us."

In a counter-proposal, I've suggested that "Podemos con Obama" be added to the loop; I can't imagine the RBC could last through that one more than a couple times. For your listening pleasure, the Colon song is below.


Alex Koppelman

Alex Koppelman is a staff writer for Salon.

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