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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Obama to FL Dems: You're irrelevant



It's not surprising that Barack Obama wants to downplay Florida's Democratic primary. It is surprising how he so casually and aggressively gives a middle finger to Democrats in America's biggest battleground state. From a campaign memo released today: "Although Senator Obama did not remove his name from the Florida Primary ballot because Florida law did not allow him to do so, Senator Obama is firm in his commitment to neither participate nor campaign in the Florida Primary and its outcome has no bearing on the nomination contest. We raise Florida today because Senator Clinton has scheduled a fundraiser in Florida on Jan. 27th, and there are signs – despite Senator Clinton’s public pledge to the contrary – that she may be planning to campaign in the state – inquiring about large venues and increased organizing activity – ahead of the Florida primary. Our position and the position of the DNC is clear – neither the Florida nor Michigan primaries are playing any role in deciding the Democratic nominee and we are not campaigning in either state. "

The Clinton campaign:" We signed a pledge not to campaign in Florida before Feb. 5, and we’re not going to campaign in Florida. But it is disappointing that the Obama campaign continues to tell people that their voices don’t count, that they continue to disenfranchise people. Hillary Clinton wants to be president of all 50 states."

From state Democratic chairwoman Karen Thurman: "Tens of thousands of Florida Democrats have already voted in the state's Presidential Primary, which is an open and fair election with all of the major candidates appearing on the ballot. Hundreds of thousands more will vote in the next two weeks for the candidate they believe should be our Party's nominee, and they're going to send a message to the nation that no one can ignore. That's why Florida's Democratic primary counts."

She added: "Total Democratic Turnout in Iowa and New Hampshire: More than 500,000, predominantly Caucasian. Total Estimated Democratic Turnout in Florida alone: Close to 1,000,000, significant percentage of African-American and Hispanic voters."

[Last modified: Wednesday, September 15, 2010 2:15pm]


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