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'An extraordinary day' or 'an embarrassment'?

The day after the Democratic National Committee decided to allow Florida to send all of its 211 delegates to the convention but give them only half a vote, party leaders sought to put a happy face on the debacle.

"This is an extraordinary day for the Democratic Party,'' DNC Chairman Howard Dean said on ABC's This Week. "We have basically come together.''

"I'm happy with Florida,'' U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson said on CNN's Late Edition. "I would have preferred it to be that all the delegation got a full vote instead of a half vote, but the principle of one person, one vote; let the vote count and count as the people intended it. that was honored."

But all is not well in the house of the Democratic party, as was evidenced by the catcalls at yesterday's meeting in Washington and the profanity-laced tirade unleashed by U.S. Rep. Alcee Hastings, who said in a written statement that he would boycott the convention.

Today, Senate Democratic Leader Steve Geller said he had no intention of dropping his lawsuit to try to force the national party to give each Florida delegate full voting rights at the convention.

"It was an embarassment. I agreed with the protesters there,'' Geller said. "I don't know why those idiots thought this would start a reconciliation...Do they wants us to make a half-hearted attempt to turn out half as many votes or raise half as much money as usual? There is incredible, incredible anger out there."