It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s Superdelegate!

Oh no, it’s a rerun.

Eight years ago, a bunch of Obama supporters were bitching all over the internet because even though Obama was doing well in the primaries, Hillary got more delegates. This is because the Democratic party has a provision for “superdelegates” composed of elected and appointed officials who automatically get to go to the convention and help pick the candidate.superdelegate

This was a provision set up over thirty years ago. And in the eight years since Obama’s election, there has been no serious movement to change these rules.

Now the Bernie people have discovered this rule and they are bitching just as loudly as the Obama people back then, claiming it’s unfair, undemocratic, illegal and “fraud.”

Well, no. You can dislike this rule, but it’s not illegal, it’s not fraud, and there’s nothing you can do about it now. Bernie was well aware of the rules of the game when he started playing. Maybe if he didn’t like these rules, he could have joined the Democratic party 30 years ago and done something about it, hm?

Mind you, I’m a Bernie supporter. But these complaints I am reading from other supporters doesn’t make me go “Yeah! The Man is keeping us down! It’s treason!” — instead it only makes us look like uneducated childish whiners.

The purpose of the Superdelegate was to prevent some demagogue like Donald Trump from coming in and grabbing the nomination away from legitimate Democrats. And in many ways, to the Democratic insiders, that definition fits Bernie, who was an independent up till now.

The rules are working exactly as they were designed.

People need to remember that primaries (and caucuses) are not Constitutional elections; they’re private rules the party uses to pick their candidate. The party could decide to get rid of primaries completely and choose the candidate in smoke-filled rooms like they used to do in the old days. You don’t have a “right” to demand anything from the Democrats any more than you have the right to demand a say in how the local Boy Scout troop picks its scoutmaster. It’s a private organization.

Now, there are a lot of changes I’d make in the primary process — for instance, let’s not let two states filled with people who do not represent a cross-section of Americans be the first two to vote — but the bottom line is that the parties can set their own rules for how they choose their candidates.

Go ahead and lead a fight to change the rules, but don’t go bitching because you don’t like the rules that currently exist when you have never done a thing in the past to try to change them.

 

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9 thoughts on “It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s Superdelegate!

  1. Thanks for some common sense on this issue. They didn’t just do this. These have been the rules for several decades since the debacle of the Democratic National Convention in 1968 which helped elect the paranoid racist “peace thru secret invasion” Nixon. It is a safety valve to help prevent a psychotic like Cruz or a narcissistic imbecile like Trump from having an easy path to taking over a party. Bernie knew it going into this, as did Obama in 2008. Bernie needs to build momentum and like Obama he will overcome this. These are not pledged delegates so their vote can be changed. They just need a reason to change. Before we change the primary process I’d much prefer to see effort to eliminate the idiotic Electoral College.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I too would like to eliminate the Electoral College. It was useful back in the days of slow horse and buggy driven communications, but it really doesn’t have as good a place in today’s satellite speeds where every persons vote can be counted in a reasonable amount of time.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. It is worth mentioning that US senators used to be picked in smoke-filled back rooms, and that a constitutional amendment created popular election of senators. That’s a small quibble (flavorwise) in a good critique of paranoid, ahistorical* BernieBros and sisters.

    * Except when they have a conspiracy theory involving history.

    Disclosure: I voted for and donated to Bernie, and plan to vote for the Nov Dem nominee.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I didn’t say that picking candidates in smoke filled rooms was a good thing! It’s just that, technically, it’s not illegal to do so. The party can make its own rules.

      You have every right to complain about these rules, of course, but to imply that the superdelegates (or Hillary) are cheating or are being dishonest when these are the rules makes you look petty and uninformed.

      Complain about the rules and work to change them, but don’t get angry at those who are working within those rules as they current exist.

      Like

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