Senator BUZZ THOMAS
Senator TUPAC A. HUNTER
COCHAIRS, BARACK OBAMA FOR MICHIGAN
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, March 12, 2008 Contact: 517-402-2453
VOTE BY MAIL NOT AN OPTION
MI Obama Co-Chairs Call for Fair 50-50 Split of Delegates
LANSING—Calling the mail-in vote concept a “non-starter,” state Senators Buzz Thomas and Tupac A. Hunter, Co-Chairs of the Obama for Michigan Campaign, called for Michigan delegates to the Democratic National Convention to be evenly split between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama.
“On the face of it a mail-in vote sounds intriguing but it is a non-starter,” Thomas (D-Detroit) said. “Whatever we do needs to be fair, secure, and affordable. I just don’t see a mail-in vote passing those tests.”
The idea being floated is to hold a mail-in vote in Michigan to serve as a format to pick the Democratic Presidential candidate. Sources have stated that this plan would cost between $6-10 million.
“We need to start the healing process in Michigan and I don’t feel the mail-in vote is a sensible option for us to pursue,” said Hunter (D-Detroit.) “We need to look toward the general election and getting our message out. Spending millions on a mail-in vote just sets us backwards. I can’t support this concept.”
Concerns with the mail-in vote concept include issues of disenfranchisement,
security, and cost:
• If a list of registered voters is used then young voters could be missed, since young voters did not vote in the most recent election;
• If the Internet is used then older voters could lose access; and
• If it is conducted through the mail urban voters could be missed because they are the most mobile, with a much higher rate of bad addresses than any other community.
“Today we are calling for splitting the Michigan delegation fairly in half—fifty percent for Obama and fifty percent for Clinton,” Thomas said. “We need to make sure our delegation is seated and that is an equitable solution.”
“Michigan’s voice must be heard at the Democratic National Convention,” Hunter said. “Michigan has too much at stake—like the auto industry and the Great Lakes—and our concerns must be heard.”