Tag Archives: Superdelegates

Message to Superdelegates: Stop Clinton Before She Destroys the Democratic Party

From CNN: Clinton: Pledged delegates can switch sides

From Slate’s XX Factor:  Hillary in 2012!

Not that she needs [David Brooks] to tell her it’s over—and has been for some time, if you’re going to be a total math drone about it. Honestly, if you didn’t know better, you might even have begun to suspect she was hanging in there at least in part to do the maximum damage to her party’s nominee, weakening his chances in the fall and building the I-told-you-so case for Hillary in 2012. But that couldn’t be right. Right?

The title says it all, Superdelegates.  If you don’t want to blow it yet again this year (and for the near future), it’s time to end it before Clinton destroys any possible chance for victory in November (or ever again). 




It’s Time for Clinton To Withdraw

Is anybody else getting rather tired of the Democratic race?  I guess if not, you must be a Clinton supporter, as they’re the only ones who seem to think that there’s any reason for her candidacy to continue.  With Obama in the lead with delegates, the popular vote, and the state count, there is no feasible fair way for Clinton to overcome Obama on any of these marks (she’s now arguing that she won more electoral votes than Obama.  I’m not kidding.  Electoral votes).  This leaves Clinton only the superdelegates, who are extremely unlikely to overturn the primary results.  I can’t imagine that even Clinton supporters really want this to happen.  And that’s even ignoring the fact that it would lead to a huge backlash against the Democratic Party and almost undoubtedly hand the election to the Republicans.

To be fair, not everyone thinks that the ongoing process is a bad thing.  The media, for instance, is only very recently recognizing the fact that Clinton cannot win.  And even then it’s only the media fringe that is picking up on this or, at least, writing about it.

There is a fairly loud contingency who believes that the ongoing race can only help the Democrats in the end because, they say, this keeps the Democrats in the spotlight while no one pays any attention to what McCain has to say.  There are two problems with this.  The first of which is that every time I open up news pages, there’s almost invariably an article or two on McCain.  There are, admittedly fewer than on the Democratic race, but this leads to problem number two.  There is rarely anything printed of interest anymore besides the latest, rather meaningless, poll numbers, or yet more coverage of the “battle of the umbrage-taking.”

In no way are these stories helpful to keep voters interested, nor are they helpful in showing either candidate in a good light.  The more attacks from Clinton against Obama, the more ammunition McCain will have come the general election.  Clinton is, after all, a fellow Democrat, and her words, and those of her supporters, therefore sting far worse than those coming from Republicans.  For example, in listening to coverage of Obama’s speech on race, Clinton supports have been far less positive about his speech than even Republicans, whereby Clinton supporters often simply dismiss it out of hand

And that brings me to my main point.  Right now, the two sides are quite split, and probably have more venom for one another than they do for the Republicans.  It’s an irrational amount of hate, it’s people not wanting to listen to what the other side has to say, and it’s wanting to criticize anything at all the other campaign does so as to gain any sort of points by doing so.

This DOES NOT help the Democratic Party, and the increasing apathy due to the “battle of the umbrage-taking” and the never ending race make the situation untenable.  With Clinton having no chance to take the nomination without a superdelegate overturn of the race, which would be a disaster in itself, continuing the race is very damaging to the Democrats. 

It’s time for Clinton to see this.  It’s time for her to see that the only way to win is to kill almost all chances for the Democrats in the general election.  It’s time for her to do what’s good for her party and what’s good for her convictions.  It’s time for her to withdraw from the race. 

Unfortunately, this isn’t happening.  In this case, it’s time for the superdelegates to finally step in, like Bill Richardson, to settle this before it destroys any chances to win in the general election.  That way, it will finally stop the irrational criticisms, and more importantly, it will give Democrats time for the vitriol to subside, and more properly direct their anger toward the more proper target, Republicans.




**03/25/2008 addendum**

David Brooks’ New York Times op-ed on why Clinton should withdraw.

Taking Our Ball And Going Home: It’s Not Irrational

Recently, the women at Slate.com’s XX Factor have started to make a big deal about how Obama supporters wouldn’t vote for Clinton in the general election.  That is, since Clinton and Obama’s policies are similar, it’s irrational for Obama supporters to not still vote for Clinton should she take the nomination.

Rosa Brooks:

I don’t get it. How can someone be mad at Hillary for attacking Obama in the same way Republicans might/will attack Obama but threaten to retaliate against Hillary, should her attacks on Obama prove successful, by voting for … the Republican candidate?

Dahlia Lithwick:

And I agree with you completely that the people who say they will vote for McCain if their Dem of choice isn’t crowned appear to be drunk.

Emily Bazelon:

The other problem with the craziness you point to, Rosa, is that it makes the Obama-Clinton divide seem like it’s about policy and substance, as opposed to personal preference and leadership style…


…if the Democratic candidate who wins isn’t your guy or gal, he or she is still going to do a whole lot more to deliver for you on the issues you care about, if you’re liberal or semi-liberal, than the Republican.

Emily Bazelon is correct on one point at least.  The difference between Clinton and Obama is mostly personal preference and leadership style (there are definitely substantive differences too, more so than most analysts credit, but obviously McCain is far different than them than they are to each other).  However, that’s not to say one should vote for Clinton should she take the nomination.


Now, I freely concede that if Clinton takes the nomination fairly, then I would still vote for her.  If she took it unfairly (the superdelegates overturn the pledged delegates, or Michigan and Florida overturn the results), then, as I previously posted, I would have a big dilemma on my hands. 


However, it is not irrational for an Obama supporter to not vote for Clinton in a general election even if she took the nomination fairly.  It’s not only what your fighting for, but how you fight.  A big reason people have come to Obama is because he promises a change in tone.  We’re sick and tired of the political grandstanding instead of actually working together to get things done.  Clinton shows us that it’s not just the Republicans who are at fault for this type of political nonsense.  As such, if Clinton were the nominee, then it more than makes sense for Obama supporters, especially those who are independent or Republican, to not vote for her come November.


But there are definitely other issues that could cause an Obama supporter not to vote Clinton.  In fact, one such issue is about “the issues.”  The argument goes that Obama supporters should vote Clinton because they have similar policies.  The problem that this raises for many on the Obama side, however, is that, again, it’s not just about what you’re fighting for, but how you fight the fight.  With the way Clinton operates, turning off many people in the meantime, many of us do not think that Clinton would be successful in getting much done.  In fact, she might actually do damage to our issues, as well as to the Democratic Party.  As such, four years of McCain might not be worse than 4-8 years of Clinton.


And then there’s spite.  It’s perhaps the most “irrational” reason not to vote for Clinton.  Throughout this campaign Clinton has pulled out every political trick in the book to beat Obama.  It’s not about doing good for the people, it’s about doing whatever she can to get elected.  This includes backstabbing a fellow Democrat.  Is it really irrational to not want to vote for someone who backstabbed you? 


As I’ve said, should Clinton win the nomination fairly, I’d still vote for her, but I can see why some Obama supporters wouldn’t.  It’s not irrational at all.  Should Clinton win the nomination unfairly (and it’s looking like that’s the only way she can get the nomination), I will have a big dilemma on my hands.  Four years of McCain might just do less damage to the issues than 4-8 years of Clinton.  It wouldn’t be pretty, but it might not be that bad.  Additionally, should Clinton win it by superdelegates overturning the pledged delegates, not voting for Clinton it would send a message to the Democratic party that it’s not just about the party itself, it’s about those who support them.  That certainly is anything but irrational.


But as I pointed out in that previous post about my dilemma, there’s the Supreme Court to consider.  Without the Supreme Court, I would probably not vote in the Presidential election.  But considering the damage another Republican appointee to the Court would do for years and years to come, I have to, sadly, still vote for Clinton.  It’s not something I want to do, but I would have to.  However, because there are many legitimate reasons to not vote for Clinton in the general election, I wouldn’t blame others for abstaining from voting should Clinton win the nomination.