The Clinton campaign will go into Saturday's DNC meeting saying that it wants the Michigan and Florida delegations fully seated and fully counted.
But that's mostly a bargaining position -- and not their true bottom line.
The fight will really come down to how to impose the 50 percent sanction.
Seat the full delegation and give each delegate half a vote.
Seat half the delegation and give each delegate a full vote.
Following Method #1 rather than Method #2 could net Clinton 9 extra delegates in Michigan and Florida combined, according to an analysis done by Dick Sheffield of ABC's Decision Desk.
Here's the state-by-state breakdown:
Seating the full delegation with half votes would net Clinton 9 pledged delegates in Michigan and 19 pledged delegates in Florida for a net gain of 28 pledged delegates in total.
By contrast, cutting the delegation in half would net Clinton 11 delegates in Michigan and 8 pledged delegates in Florida for a net gain of 19 pledged delegates in total.
Why the difference in outcome between the two approaches?
ABC's Sheffield explains that the basic reason for the difference is that John Edwards hits the threshold of 15% in some of the Florida congressional districts and with a lesser number of delegates at stake, it affects the outcome.
Beyond the delegate advantage, the Clinton camp says it prefers Method #2 for the sake of diversity and party unity.
"Fewer voters, delegates, and Party leaders would feel demoralized and abandoned by our Party," writes Clinton general counsel Lyn Utrecht in a letter sent Friday to RBC co-chairs Alexis Herman and James Roosevelt, Jr.
". . . A halving approach avoids the serious credentials problems that would arise if half of the delegates from Florida and Michigan did not attend the convention," the letter continues. "If the number of delegates is reduced, the resultant change in composition would likely mean that both states would be in danger of not complying with their respective Affirmative Action plans and Inclusion Programs."
"No edits or changes were requested…it was his option and choice as the author."
--Footnote to White House daily briefing transcript following questions from ABC's Ann Compton about whether the White House reviewed Scott McClellan's book prior to publication.
On the campaign front. . .
Saturday, May 31, 2008
-- 12:00 am ET: Attends Town Hall meeting, Rapid City, SD
-- 7:30 pm ET: Attends Town Hall meeting, Aberdeen SD
-- In Puerto Rico
-- 10:15 am ET: Attends front porch event with voters, Elk Point, SD
-- 12:15 pm ET: Attends event with voters, Canton, SD
-- 2:15 pm ET: Attends front porch event with Chelsea Clinton and voters, Dell Rapids, SD
-- 4:00 pm ET: Attends front porch event with voters, Flandreau, SD
-- 6:00 pm ET: Attends event with voters, Madison, SD
As for the Republicans. . .
-- No public events
At the White House. . .
-- 7:30 pm ET: Delivers commencement address at Furman University, Greenville, SC
Sunday, June 1, 2008
-- 12:30 pm ET: Attends closed pancake breakfast with veterans and military families, Sioux Falls, SD
-- 4:00 pm ET: Attends rally with voters, Mitchell SD
-- In Puerto Rico