Super Delegates Under the Microscope

Back before anybody else was talking about it — before Super Tuesday! — I wrote in The New York Sun that the super delegates were “the special individuals who could be the 2008 equivalent of 2000’s hanging chads.” I added “After three decades or reform and transparency, a convention could, in effect, be turned by a powerful boss — a reality sure to warm the hearts of American voters.”

Having written that, I’m having trouble following some of the back and forth on the super delegates. The argument, coming from the Barack Obama camp, is that super delegates should support whichever candidate has the delegate lead going into the convention. It is an argument that makes the most intuitive sense. But if that is the only criterion under which super delegates must operate, that calls into question the need for super delegates at all. The way I understand it is that the super delegates were created to counter-balance the great weight in the nominating process that had shifted to voters. Under that rationale, winning the support of super delegates represents an anachronistic but important part of the nominating process, one just as valid as winning pledged delegates.

2 Responses to “Super Delegates Under the Microscope”

  1. Rob C Says:

    After Barack announces his VP, Dem Super Delegates will fall behind this ticket. Hillary will be a memory. So, the stupid delegates are not the true issue, are they?

    Pundit commentary since 2000 should have focused on the Electoral College, not Dem delegates. Stopping Barack is the unspoken message and the rage of this election. Even if Obama wins the nomination, we’ve got another filter to his election, don’t We?

    Are the Democratic measures being establishing in Iraq reflecting our archaic republic or the ideal “one man (if we haven’t killed-ed them all), one vote” bull we promote?

    So, if the Dems wants Hillary, they can have Them. I guess shallow victories count…Next?

  2. Sportsattitude Says:

    Only in America can we proudly boast our democratic, open society where every vote counts…and then proceed to trot out voting booth machines that don’t work, running out of voting ballots, harassing people trying to vote, telling people their vote won’t count…and now, the mysterious tradition of the “Super Delegates.” I can see where a Democrat would not even bother to vote if they feel that ultimately the decision of who will carry their flag into the Fall is selected in a smoke-filled back room somewhere by people looking for the candidate who, if they win, will give them a cushy job in their Cabinet or possibly an Ambassador position. Ironic that the party feels a need to have a check and balance in place in case the electorate likes the “wrong candidate.” As each day goes by, one wonders if the Democrats are ready to run the White House when they can’t even run their own party…entertaining an idea at this late date to undo their own punishment handed out to Florida and Michigan, for example. Very discouraging as I am an Obama supporter who can clearly see this election will be taken from him by the “old school” machine who mistakenly feels Billary will be able to win the Presidency. Maybe they should have paid attention to just about every poll run for a couple of years now showing – for starters – half the people in this country hate the Clintons. Yet, so many of the Super Delegates and power structure in the party “owe” Billary for what they’ve done to help them in the past they feel nothing but pure, blind obligation to make sure they get the party’s nomination.

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