Democrats Who Oppose the “Texas Two Step” to Hold Press Conference Monday, July 7

July 5, 2008 by  
Filed under Blog, Press Releases

Media Advisory
For immediate release: July 3, 2008

Contact: Scott Cobb 512-xxx-xxxx (Use Contact Form on Website)
Sue Berkel 512-xxx-xxxx

Democrats Who Oppose the “Texas Two Step” to Hold Press Conference Monday, July 7

Group Seeks Change in Caucus Process Used by Texas Democrats to Allocate Delegates

A group of Democrats who are seeking an end to the “Texas Two Step” process of allocating delegates among the candidates for president will hold a press conference Monday, July 7, at 9:15 AM outside on the grounds of the ACC Eastview Campus (near the parking lot), 3401 Webberville Road in Austin.

The press conference is being held immediately before the first meeting of a committee set up by the Texas Democratic Party and chaired by Senator Royce West that, according to TDP Chair Boyd Richie, “has been charged with studying the current convention/caucus system. Furthermore, based on the testimony taken at these meetings, the committee will then consider this feedback and possibly make recommendations for changes.”

The group wants the Texas Democratic Party to change its rules for future elections, so that all national Texas pledged delegates are awarded to presidential candidates based only on the results of the popular vote in the Primary. In 2008, pledged delegates were chosen through a complicated “Texas Two-Step” process that allocated 126 delegates based on the primary vote and 67 through the caucus system.

At the Texas Democratic State Convention in June, the group collected signatures from more than 30 percent of the number of delegates to the convention on a resolution calling for an end to the “Texas Two-Step”. When the resolution was brought to the floor of the convention, it was tabled without discussion on a motion by State Senator Royce West on the grounds that his committee will be looking into the caucus system.

Speakers at the press conference will include both voters who supported Hillary Clinton and voters who supported Barack Obama in the primary, but who all agree that the current system of allocating any pledged national delegates based on caucus results should be scrapped.

“The current system is unfair because it dilutes the votes of people who vote in the primary but do not return for the caucuses. Caucuses create too many barriers for voters. Many people are unable to spend 2-3 hours on election night casting another vote at the caucus to fully support their candidate. Many voters work evenings, have young children to care for, are elderly and do not get out at night or are frail, have health issues, or are in the military and stationed abroad. Others may just be unaware that to fully support their chosen candidate they have to “vote twice”. Only about one-third of the people who voted in the Democratic Primary on March 4 returned for the caucuses. 2,874,986 people voted in the primary, so about 1.9 million people had their votes diluted by an unfair process. That is a lot of people. A system that allocates all pledged delegates based on the results of the primary would be more fair, democratic and inclusive than the party’s current system”, said Scott Cobb, a long-time Texas Democrat.

“We believe ALL voters should count equally”, said Amy Esdorn, who voted for Obama in the primary, but was unable to attend the caucus because she is a graduate student who had class the evening of March 4.

The meeting of West’s committee will be at the Austin Community College Health Science Building 9000 in the Multi Purpose Hall room 8500 in Austin, Texas on July 7, 2008 at 10:00am. The campus is located at 3401 Webberville Rd, Austin, Texas 78702.

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