MyWay has the details on the court's ruling:
A union with ties to Democrat Hillary Rodham Clinton failed in court Thursday to prevent casino workers from caucusing at special precincts on the Las Vegas strip.
The ruling by U.S. District Court Judge James Mahan was presumed to be a boost for Clinton rival Barack Obama in the Democratic presidential caucuses Saturday because he has been endorsed by the union representing many of the shift workers who will be able to use the precincts.
"State Democrats have a First Amendment right to association, to assemble and to set their own rules," Mahan said.
The Clinton campaign responds:
In a statement, the Clinton campaign pointed out that other voters won't receive the same advantages as the bellhops and waitresses along the strip.
"Make no mistake," the statement said, "the current system that prohibits some shift workers from being able to participate, while allowing others to do so, would seem to benefit other campaigns. More importantly, it is unfair."
And Bill Clinton, once again taking the lead in his wife's campaign, was angrily defensive:
"Get on your television station and say, 'I don't care about the home mortgage crisis, all I care about is making sure that some voters have it easier than others, and that when they do vote, when it's already easier for them, their vote should count five times as much as others,' " Clinton said.
"If you want to take that position, get on the television and take it," he added. "Don't be accusatory with me, I had nothing to do with this lawsuit."
I'm not sure exactly what Bill Clinton means when he says the casino workers vote will count "five times as much as others". If anyone knows what he is talking about please comment.
What I do know is that the number of votes cast would be much less if the casino caucus sites were not allowed to operate. I should know something about this because I lived in Las Vegas for 15 years and visit there often.
The casinos employ huge numbers of people so it only makes sense to locate the caucus sites inside them. Whats more, traffic in and around the strip is often a nightmare. People who work in the casinos cannot easily travel to the other locations away from the strip and get back in time to report for their shifts. It seems to me anything that facilitates participation in the caucuses should be allowed.
Ultimately, it's up to the Nevada Democratic Party itself to set its own rules on how to conduct caucuses. This never belonged in the courts.
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