Superdelegates Doing Their Job

It’s astonishing how some people are still so mislead about what superdelegates actually are supposed to do. I’m extremely sceptical that they would actually undercut the outright winner of the popular vote, no matter the margin. Even if that was supposed to be their inteded funtion, if the DNC actually allowed it would seem like political suicide for much of the current Democratic establishment.

The real function they seem to be doing is totally obfuscating the true amount of delegates the contenders actually need to get to win the popular vote, and therefore the nomination. Just ask yourself why almost all of the superdelegates sided with one specific candidate so early on.** Media narrative is everything** and artificially inflating the delegate count to make it seem that one potential nominee is way behind the other will make it that much harder for the underdog candidate. *Only till resently *did major media sources start to report the delegate count without the superdelegates. It would be intersting to see a general poll on how many democratic voters understood what the superdelegates actually are.

The superdelegates have done their part.
True democracy is the enemy of the rich and powerful.
“[Landowners] ought to be so constituted as to protect the minority of the opulent against the majority.” -James Madison

From the start of the primary’s I’ve been seeing graphs for delegates seperating super delegates out. I don’t think it’s a very grand conspiracy.

I’m completely amused at the transformation my Facebook page is going through now. For months I’ve been hearing about the evil super delegates voting for Hillary over Bernie and how they should be done away with. Now that it appears Bernie can not win without them voting against the popular vote on his behalf they are the best thing since sliced bread. I don’t have a problem with Bernie, his supporters I’d like to go away.

Yet time and time again even in here on this message board there have been arguments and confusion about them, things like Hillary already has x amount of superdelegates thus Sanders needs y amount of pledged delegates and it’s virtually impossible for him to win because of this etc. The media will always metion the superdelegates to reassure everyone that even if Sanders wins some vote/caucus somewhere not to worry and Hillary will still win overall, because of superdelegates. They won’t necessarily say it in so many words or even directly but all of this is pretty much implied.

Here is nice quote from Debbie Wasserman Schultz:

Long live the establishment. It can do no wrong.

I get the anger, but it’s not superdelegates or the DNC that are behind Bernie’s lack of success – it’s the voters. Most Democrats like Hillary better, and she’s winning a lot more votes. I like Bernie and he’s run a good campaign, but he has little chance to win, even if all the superdelegates got behind him.

So the superdelegate have no influence on the media narrative? They have zero influence on the outcome of the primaries? If they are so useless then why not just abolish them?

They probably have some small amount, but so do many other factors. I’d be fine with getting rid of them, but Hillary would still be way ahead, in all likelihood, even if they had been abolished before this cycle.

Hillary really is very popular with Democrats, and it’s extremely difficult to beat a very popular and well-known Democrat in a Democratic primary.

Yeah it is pretty dumb to think that the superdelegates would switch simply to allow a non-winning contender (if Sanders loses) and a contender that is against the DNC establishment to actually win.

It’s not just dumb it’s downright ludicrous. But not that suprising. Democracy is often only usefull to people when it actually reflects their interests. This can be seen on all parts of the spectrum and especially for the ones in power.

There does seem to be a significant amount of overlap between people who have pipe dreams and people who vote for Bernie. Not that there is anything wrong with either, just the results can be comical.

I see that the purpose of the super delegates is to put an exclamation point on the popular vote winner. If the will of the primary voters was over turned by the super delegates, the ill will that that would cause among the supporters of the candidate who lost would destroy any chances for the Democratic party in November. The super delegates know this and so at the end of the day they will follow the will of the people.

But given the that will of the people is generally divided, and the Democrats rely on a proportional rewarding of delegates, it will often be the case the the winner will only come out with say 60% of the delegates, which hardly sounds like a united party. By adding an additional five to seven hundred votes to the winners side they can make it appear the the winner has a clear mandate and a united party behind him/her.

Also the super delegates are necessary if we ended with a 3 way race like the Republicans have. With the Republican’s winner take all states, a plurality candidate can arrive at a clear majority by the convention. But with the Democrats proportional representation, three viable candidates is almost sure to lead to no individual candidate getting the majority. But here again the super delegates can step in and either bump the plurality candidate into the majority or else determine a candidate that best represents the dominant coalition. Basically brokering the convention behind the scenes without having to go through the public embarrassment of a truly brokered convention.

Don’t do that.

If there’s a three or four way race that continues late, somebody has to break the tie. If a candidate gets 51% of the elected delegates and a scandal destroys their support in May or June, the superdelegates can put their thumb on the scales. Basically they are there in case the primary voters don’t reach a majority consensus. That was the original idea and it was a good one. It’s not all about 2016.

At any rate the primaries themselves aren’t especially democratic. There are 50 sets of rules, all of which restrict eligible voters in one way or another. None of the voting systems use ranked choice or approval voting, which leads to candidates that aren’t consensus choices. I bear no sentimentality for this system.

Superdelegates strongly favored Hillary out of the gate in 2008. And who won the primary that year – the establishment candidate or not?

Face it, Bernie Sanders needs to win more voters. Complaining about “media narratives” doesn’t change the fact that Clinton is just generally better known and better liked among Democrats.