Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Democratic Party stalling on Florida, DNC member says

A Florida Democratic National Committee member trying to give Florida a voice in the Democratic presidential nomination is fed up with the brushoff he says he's getting from the party.

"There's obviously a stall going on. … They're treating Florida worse than their own dog,'' said Jon Ausman of Tallahassee, who five weeks ago filed two appeals with the DNC's rules and bylaws committee, arguing that the committee overstepped its authority in stripping away Florida's delegates to the national convention.

For weeks, Ausman said he has been unable to get calls returned by the prominent co-chairs of that committee, Alexis Herman and Jim Roosevelt, or any word on how the committee will proceed. Either they want to wait until a candidate drops out of the race or don't want to admit they made a mistake in punishing Florida so severely for setting a primary earlier than DNC rules allowed, Ausman said.

"They need to step up to the plate or they just need to admit what they're going to do, which is nothing. Obviously the process and the rules don't count,'' said Ausman, a party rules maven, whose appeals were seen as the fastest vehicle for getting Florida's delegate controversy resolved.

Neither Roosevelt nor Herman could be reached for comment.

Meanwhile, Florida Sen. Bill Nelson and U.S. Rep. Alcee Hastings, D-Miramar, on Monday called on DNC chairman Howard Dean to release the confidential staff recommendations on Ausman's appeal.

"Under the process, staff had two weeks to make their recommendation to the co-chairs, which they have done. The co-chairs are now reviewing the recommendation. When they decide how to proceed, it will be made public,'' said DNC spokesman Luis Miranda.

Nelson and Hastings had previously unsuccessfully sued to force the DNC to recognize Florida's Jan. 29 primary, and in Dade City on Monday, Nelson said he feared Democrats could lose the White House if they leave the delegate problems with Florida and Michigan unresolved.

"Eventually this whole thing will blow up in the Democratic Party's face," Nelson said, predicting "blood on the floor" if no solution is found. "The chairman ought to be cracking the whip, saying we ought to solve this thing. It should have been solved 10 months ago."

If the rules and bylaws committee doesn't take action, it will be left to another DNC committee to act on Florida and Michigan in July or August.

Times staff writer Chuin-Wei Yap contributed to this report. Adam C. Smith can be reached at or (727)893-8241.

Democratic Party stalling on Florida, DNC member says 04/21/08 [Last modified: Monday, April 28, 2008 5:35pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Girl says her mom asked for forgiveness before stabbing her


    ATLANTA — Everyone was asleep when Isabel Martinez began stabbing her children and then fatally stabbed her husband as he tried seek help, her daughter told a child welfare caseworker.

    In a  July 7 file photo, Isabel Martinez gestures towards news cameras during her first court appearance, in Lawrenceville , Ga. Martinez is charged with killing four of her children and their father. [AP Photo/John Bazemore, File]
  2. McCain says 'I'll be back soon' as he battles brain cancer


    WASHINGTON — Battling brain cancer, Sen. John McCain on Thursday promised to return to work, making a good-natured dig at his Republican and Democratic colleagues who were jolted by news of the six-term lawmaker's diagnosis.

    Sen. John McCain has been diagnosed with a brain tumor after a blood clot was removed. [Associated Press]
  3. Fire on neighbor's porch leads to charges against Holiday man


    HOLIDAY — A Holiday man was arrested Wednesday after authorities say he torched the front porch of his neighbor, who he insisted was holding his daughter hostage.

    Dan Fry, 63, of Holiday was arrested Wednesday on a charge of first-degree arson. [Photo courtesy of Pasco Sheriff's Office]
  4. Port Richey man solicited sex from 13-year-old, Pasco authorities say


    PORT RICHEY — A Port Richey man was arrested Wednesday after Pasco County authorities say he solicited sex from a 13-year-old boy on the gay male dating app Grindr.

    Shawn Daly, 43, of Port Richey was charged with solicitation for sexual conduct with a child over a computer. [Photo courtesy of Pasco Sheriff's Office]