Offering frequent news and analysis from the majestic Evergreen State and beyond, The Cascadia Advocate is the Northwest Progressive Institute's unconventional perspective on world, national, and local politics.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Huckabee campaign unhappy with Luke Esser, Washington Republicans

Last night Mike Huckabee's campaign issued this priceless press release, complaining the results of the Washington State GOP caucuses are "dubious":

Richmond, VA -- The Huckabee Presidential Campaign will be exploring all available legal options regarding the dubious final results for the state of Washington State Republican precinct caucuses, it was announced today. Campaign Chairman Ed Rollins issued the following statement:

"The Huckabee campaign is deeply disturbed by the obvious irregularities in the Washington State Republican precinct caucuses. It is very unfortunate that the Washington State Party Chairman, Luke Esser, chose to call the race for John McCain after only 87 percent of the vote was counted. According to CNN, the difference between Senator McCain and Governor Huckabee is a mere 242 votes, out of more than 12,000 votes counted-with another 1500 or so votes, apparently, not counted. That is an outrage.

"In other words, more than one in eight Evergreen State Republicans have been disenfranchised by the actions of their own party. This was an error in judgment by Mr. Esser. It was Mr. Esser's duty to oversee a fair vote-count process. Washington Republicans know, from bitter experience in the 2004 gubernatorial election, the terrible results that can come from bad ballot-counting.

"Frankly, I am disappointed in the way that Mr. Esser has handled this urgent matter. So I call upon Mr. Esser and his colleagues to cooperate fully with the Huckabee campaign-and all Republicans, everywhere, who care about honest and transparent vote-counting-to make sure that every vote is counted and that all Republicans in Washington have the chance to make their votes count. Attempts by our campaign to contact Mr. Esser have been unsuccessful. Our lawyers will be on the ground in Washington State soon, and we look forward to sitting down with Mr. Esser to evaluate this process, to see why the count took so long, and why the vote-counting was stopped prematurely.

"It would be a disservice to every voter in Washington State to not pursue a full accounting of all votes cast.

"This is not about Mike Huckabee. This is not about Senator John McCain. This is about the failings of the Washington State Republican Party. All Republicans should unite to demand an honest accounting of the votes, so that Republicans can have full confidence in the results, and full confidence in the eventual Republican nominee. As I said, we are prepared to go to court, and we are also prepared to take our case all the way to the Republican National Convention in September.

"Our cause is just. We must reemphasize the sacred American principle that all ballots be counted in a free, fair, and transparent manner."
It gets even better, folks. Here's Huckabee on CNN this morning:
That is not what we do in American elections...

Maybe that's how they used to conduct it in the old Soviet Union, but you don't just throw people's votes out and say, "well, we're not going to bother counting them because we kind of think we know where this was going."
Emphasis is mine.

So Huckabee's out there comparing the GOP to Soviet Russia - hilarious! The Everett Herald has a story about this mentioning a Huckabee supporter - Kim Davis - who said she and others were disenfranchised by the caucus conveners:
In an interview, Davis said she "absolutely" thought McCain supporters rigged voting in her precinct because she and a Ron Paul supporter were denied a chance to run to be delegates.

"They didn't follow the process. No one got to talk. No one got to vote," she said.

"I felt like what they did was wrong," she said. "If they could do that to us, I wondered how many other places could that have happened."
The irony is delicious, isn't it?

Hardly a day has gone by since the 2004 gubernatorial election which hasn't featured whining from Republicans grumbling about the outcome of that contest, absurdly complaining that Gregoire's win was fixed by King County Executive Ron Sims or rabidly accusing Democrats of ballot stuffing and cheating.

We've also had to put up with Republicans making a big stink about "elections reform", calling for a complete overhaul of the King County Elections Division.

It turns out that Republicans don't have a clue about organizing elections, because they managed to botch their own caucuses, which they had complete control over!

What's more...according to Huckabee's campaign, the state party office isn't even returning their phone calls! If Republicans are this disconnected from each do they possibly expect to win in the general election?

The Huckabee campaign is not only disregarding the 11th Commandment (thou shalt not speak ill of a fellow Republican) but they're prepared to go to court - to instigate a legal battle against the Washington State Republican Party!

Maybe Huckabee supporters should dress up in orange and picket the state GOP headquarters with "ReCaucus" signs!

This is an embarrassing spectacle, to be sure, and it's great entertainment for Democrats. Pass the popcorn...this drama could get fascinating!


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