Wednesday, March 07, 2012
Jim Rogers Does it Again!
I'm sort of obsessed with Jim Rogers. Every two years, Jim Rogers will appear on the primary ballot as a candidate for U.S. president or U.S. senator, and despite doing limited campaigning, he will get an extraordinary amount of votes. And by "limited campaigning," I mean "standing on a street corner in a crimson sweatshirt and holding a sign up as traffic honks at him".
Yesterday was Oklahoma's presidential preference primary, and while the important stuff was going down on the other side of the aisle, Oklahoma's Democrats were asked to do one simple thing for democracy: checking the box that says Barack Obama. Unfortunately for the sitting president, only 57% of ornery Oklahoma Democrats are willing to give him a second term. Turns out 18% of Oklahoma Democrats would prefer the anti-abortion activist (and former Republican candidate for U.S. Senate in Florida) Randall Terry. And 14% would prefer the distinguished hobo from Midwest City Jim Rogers.
The news stories this morning advertised the fact that based on Terry breaking the 15% viability threshhold, Randall Terry would get to claim a delegate or two and spoil what would have otherwise been a perfect delegate tally for Barack Obama at the Democratic Convention. But the news stories are incomplete. Randall Terry doesn't get to have all the fun.
Assuming he's still a candidate on April 4th, and assuming he submits a slate of delegates to the Oklahoma Democratic Party by March 15th, Jim Rogers should be able to claim three national convention delegates. Party rules say that the delegates to the national convention shall be awarded proportionally not only by statewide tally but also by congressional district. Of the 16 statewide delegates at stake, Obama should claim at least 11, leaving 5 to Randall Terry and 0 for Jim Rogers. But in the congressional district vote, Rogers got more than 15% in the 2nd, 3rd and 4th districts (the non-Oklahoma City, non-Tulsa parts of the state). Of the 29 delegates awarded to the districts, Obama should get 22, Terry should get 4, and Rogers should get 3. (Muskogee Politico breaks it down 21, 5, 3).
It's still amazing to me. This guy whose sole contribution to our republic is standing out on Reno and holding a handmade sign has received 15,000 Democratic votes, or 2.28% of the votes cast so far in all Democratic primaries and caucuses. He now has more delegates than Rick Perry, Michele Bachmann, Herman Cain, Jon Huntsman, Buddy Roemer, and Gary Johnson combined, as well as a higher percentage of votes cast. Vermin Supreme, New Hampshire's grizzled old coot of a perennial candidate, has one-twentieth of the votes that Jim Rogers has, and that guy's even been on TV.