WASHINGTON — The national Democratic Party won't pay for a do-over of Florida or Michigan's primary, Democratic National Committee chairman Howard Dean said Thursday.
In a round of televised interviews, Dean said the two state parties are going to have to come up with alternatives if they want their delegates to be counted in the presidential primary.
"We can't afford to do that,'' he said. "That's not our problem. We need our money to win the presidential race.''
Dean noted that the DNC had offered last summer to pick up some of the cost of a small party-run vote in place of a state-run primary, but Florida party leaders refused.
"Now, unfortunately, that time is gone,'' he said in an MSNBC interview. "And we've got to focus our resources on winning. . . . Our job now is to elect a president of the United States, and we're not going to have the resources to run a primary in Michigan and Florida.''
Dean said the two states — which participated in early primaries in violation of national party rules — have two options: holding a revote or appealing to a party committee convening this summer to recognize the earlier votes.
Hillary Clinton won both states' primaries — she was the only candidate on Michigan's ballot — and she has pushed to have the results recognized, but a campaign spokesman on Wednesday sidestepped questions about whether the campaign would support do-overs or pony up any money to help pay for them.
"Our position is that the voters of Michigan and Florida have spoken and those votes ought to count, the delegates ought to be seated,'' Howard Wolfson said in a conference call with reporters.
But he also didn't rule out supporting a revote.
"Certainly, given how well we did in those states, were there to be a primary, we would have a good opportunity to do well again,'' he said.