Saturday, June 14, 2008


If I were pulling for McCain - if I was a "vote republican regardless" republican, I would buy this woman a cupcake. But all she really gets is scorn.

If the supreme court opens up a branch of the government directly in her privates, I hope she's happy that her hard work paid off.

Look - it's easy for me to judge. My order in this thing was "Obama, McCain, Move to Canada" and I've never felt any differently. But the more McCain coddles the rightist side of the party I do not identify with, the harder that vote would have been to make.

But I'm in the middle. Always have been, always will be.

This person SEEMS to be on the left, and is willing to trade that out of spite. I find that mockable, and sad.

Delegate’s reversal stuns party

Wisconsin Democrat now publicly supports McCain

Washington - As an avid supporter of Hillary Rodham Clinton in the Democratic primaries, Debra Bartoshevich is not alone in her frustration over Clinton's defeat.

She’s not alone in refusing to support Barack Obama.

And she’s not entirely alone in saying she’ll vote this fall for Republican John McCain instead.

But what makes her unusual is that she holds these views as an elected delegate to the Democratic National Convention in Denver this summer.

“I’m sure people are going to be upset with me,” said Bartoshevich, a 41-year-old emergency room nurse from Waterford in Racine County, and convention delegate pledged to Clinton.

Joe Wineke, chairman of the Democratic Party of Wisconsin, reacted with disbelief when first told Friday afternoon that one of his state party delegates is now a McCain supporter.

“Not a delegate? To the national convention?” said Wineke, who was getting ready for the start of the Wisconsin state party convention Friday in Stevens Point.

“We have a Clinton national (convention) delegate who says she’s voting for John McCain?” Wineke repeated, for clarification. “I’ve never heard of such a thing.”

Wineke said “almost everybody I know who was for Hillary” is solidly behind Obama now. As for Bartoshevich, he said, “my suspicion is she doesn’t know what she’s getting into” because “the delegates to this convention will be very upset.”

Asked if publicly supporting the other party’s presidential nominee could affect a delegate’s convention status, Wineke said, “I never thought I’d ever get a question like this.”

After some preliminary checking, Wineke said he assumed Bartoshevich would remain a delegate.

But Friday night, after a story about Bartoshevich appeared on the Journal Sentinel’s Web site, he had apparently reconsidered. At the state Democratic Party convention, party members, including Clinton supporters, unanimously passed a resolution asking the national party not to seat Bartoshevich at the Denver convention. Wineke spoke in favor of the resolution.

Another pledged Clinton delegate, Paula Dorsey of Milwaukee, offered the resolution.

Dorsey said trying to expel her fellow Democrat from the party’s convention “hurts my soul and it hurts my heart,” but it is the party’s presumptive nominee, Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.), whom convention delegates must support.

The McCain campaign said that, nationally, it was not aware at this point of any other delegates to the Democratic convention (it may know of an alternate, it said) who have come out for the Republican candidate.

In an interview, Bartoshevich expressed lingering unhappiness over the Democratic nominating process, said Clinton was treated unfairly by the party and said she has deep reservations about Obama’s lack of experience and his judgment.

“I’m kind of disenfranchised,” she said.

She said she planned to vote for Clinton at the convention, but in an Obama-McCain matchup in November, “I will not be voting for Obama. I will cast my vote for John McCain.

“I just feel you need to have somebody who has experience with foreign matters.”

She said a series of controversial Obama associations, including but not limited to the Rev. Jeremiah Wright and Chicago developer Tony Rezko, reflected poorly on his judgment. And she echoed the complaints of many of Clinton’s most ardent supporters that Clinton was treated unfairly in the nominating process and by the party.

“No self-respecting woman should wish or work for the success of a party that ignores her — that’s by Susan B. Anthony,” said Bartoshevich, referring to the suffragist.

Bartoshevich called herself a “devoted Democrat” who had never voted for a Republican for president.

“I’m on a lot of the (pro-Clinton) blogs, and so many people, male and female, feel the same way as I do,” said Bartoshevich, who was listed as a Racine County co-chair for the Clinton campaign and who traveled outside Wisconsin to volunteer for Clinton. “The Democrats jumped on this wagon of Barack Obama, and nobody really knows him.”

Hoping to tap into discontent among Clinton supporters, the McCain campaign is reaching out to them in a variety of ways, including a telephone “town hall” meeting today targeted to non-Republican voters.

Encouraged by her sister, who has served in Iraq, Bartoshevich signed up as a supporter with “Citizens for McCain,” an arm of the campaign targeting Democrats and independents. She said she got a call from the McCain campaign, which then provided her name to a reporter.

Polls suggest that Democrats are largely rallying around Obama after a divisive nominating fight, a phenomenon that has occurred in past intra-party fights, scholars say. But it remains to be seen whether Obama is hurt in the fall by any softness among Clinton’s core constituencies, especially white women and older and lower-income whites.

“History tells us that the vast majority of pledged (Clinton) delegates will in fact be quite enthusiastic about Obama by the time they get to Denver,” said Elaine Kamarck, a Harvard lecturer, a member of the Democratic National Committee and an expert on the nominating process.

Kamarck, who supported Clinton in the primaries, said it was too soon to tell whether discontent among Clinton supporters becomes a significant factor or “whether it’s just magnified because we have the Internet.”

Clinton has not formally released her pledged delegates, and it would not be unusual, given the modern history of the party, for most of them to cast their votes for Clinton at the convention. But that would depend on whether Clinton allows her name to be put forward for the nomination. Clinton hasn’t made that clear, but she has urged her delegates to help Obama defeat McCain.

Professor Byron Shafer, a University of Wisconsin-Madison scholar who is an expert on conventions, said it’s the fact that Bartoshevich is a convention delegate, subject to the partisan tendencies and pressures common to party activists, that makes her public support for McCain so unusual.

“The competitive partisan dynamic is usually strong enough that even the people not willing to line up at the convention on record for the nominee are still unlikely to be willing to line up publicly for the other party’s nominee,” Shafer said. “It’s a pretty far-out move.”

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