For Bernie, 8 wins in a row ain’t chopped liver – and it’s high time for the superdelegates to catch on
Bernie Sanders just won Wyoming tonight, making it eight straight victories, and not just by a couple of votes, either. Wyoming Democratic Party executive director Aimee Van Cleave said that being a Democratic in red Wyoming is “electrifying.” Bernie seems to have that effect on people.
Okay, sour grapes’ers, talk to me about the math – no, actually, don’t. We won’t talk about the math until we get to the open convention, because that’s when it comes important because that’s when superdelegates vote. Already there’s some movement in the superdelegate arena, the flipping from “inevitable” Clinton to the highly popular – and winning – Bernie Sanders. Uncommitted Minnesota superdelegate Rep. Rick Nolan has felt the pressure from Sanders supporters, with some querying whether he will be reelected if he pledges for Clinton when Sanders won over 60% of the state. After rumors started that he’s in the Clinton camp, he squelched them in a big fat hurry, releasing a statement that he hasn’t endorsed anybody yet.
I’m saying, screw the math, for now. If you read the media headlines, you’ll catch the theme: Bernie is in the process of trying to “poach” (definition: take or acquire in an unfair or clandestine way) Clinton’s superdelegates. Odd phrasing, if you ask me: What exactly makes them hers? Sanders supporters are working hard to bring pressure to bear on superdelegates to flip from Clinton to Sanders, particularly in states where he’s won big. They argue, and I agree, that a superdelegate can individually vote any way he or she likes, but when it comes to casting a vote as a superdelegate, it is incumbent upon them to follow the state’s lead. I sit here, this election cycle, and wonder why the superdelegate thing hasn’t given me pause in the past; it seems odd. When I read that Kansas City, Missouri superdelegate Sly James has pledged to Clinton regardless of the state’s vote, it made my spidey sense tingle. As ivn.us noted, “. . . [M]any of the superdelegates who have stated that the will of voters is inconsequential to who they will support at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia make it sound like they were appointed with the explicit purpose of supporting Clinton.”
Here are a few particularly glaring examples of the failure of superdelegates to vote the way their electorate dictates:
- Let’s start with Michigan, where Sanders won in an upset, 61-38. How come none of the Michigan delegates are in the Sanders camp, with seven being in the Clinton camp and the rest still undecided?
- In Minnesota, where Sanders beat Clinton 61-38, only two superdelegates are in his camp; twelve are for Clinton and one is undecided.
- In Wisconsin, Sanders beat Clinton 56-43, and yet six superdelegates are for Clinton, one is for Sanders, and the rest are undecided.
- Sanders creamed Clinton 79-20 in Utah, so it should be a no-brainer that Utah’s superdelegates would be on board – but alas, two are still in the Clinton camp, despite the clear message from voters.
- Sanders beat Clinton 59-40 in Colorado, but none of Colorado’s superdelegates are on Bernie’s list – eight are pledged to Clinton, and four are still undecided.
- Sanders won by a 78-21 landslide in Idaho, so you’d think that all of the superdelegates would get the hint. You’d be wrong. One is still in the Clinton camp, and one is still undecided.
- 81-18 is what most people would call a definitive win – that’s what Sanders beat Clinton by in Alaska. So someone explain why only one superdelegate has pledged to Sanders, while two are in Clinton’s pocket and one is still undecided.
- Sanders beat Clinton 69-30 in Hawaii, again, a quite definitive statement about what the state’s voters think. Explain, then, why six superdelegates are still pledging to Clinton, only two to Sanders, and why the others can’t seem to make up their minds.
- All but one undecided superdelegate for Democrats Abroad are pledged to Clinton, despite Bernie Sanders beating her substantially, 70-30.
- Sanders won 72-27 in Washington, but you couldn’t tell it by the superdelegate count: Not one has pledged to Sanders, ten are pledged to Clinton, and the rest of the bunch are wishy-washs who can’t make up their minds.
- 61-38 in Minnesota, that’s what Sanders won by. And yet, here we are, with eight pledged to Clinton, three pledged to Sanders, and one still uncommitted.
There’s more, much more, but that’s just a random assortment of blowout Sanders wins followed by incredibly undemocratic actions by superdelegates who refuse to follow the electorate’s lead. I’d highly suggest that we all follow this website closely, SuperDelegateList.com, which is complete with contact information for the Clinton hacks, the reluctant or the fence-riders in the superdelegate arena.
To Bernie Sanders supporters the idea that Democratic superdelegates – elected officials and other party elites who can vote however they wish at the convention – could tip the nomination to Hillary Clinton seems terribly undemocratic. And so, they’re trying to convince superdelegates, officially known as unpledged party leaders and elected officials, to change their allegiance.
The role of superdelegates is enormous, given that Clinton cannot win the nomination without them – and they need to be told, in no uncertain terms, that being bought by Clinton, acting out of fear of the Clinton thug brigade, or trading a vote for a favor isn’t going to play this time around. We’re not going to allow them to decide for us who the best candidate is, when the voters have already spoken.