Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Final Word On SuperDelegates

Okay, so SuperDelgates continue to bubble up in news articles as soon as there is a lull between primary races, but I want to take a stand, once and for all, on how I feel about them.

I think they're fine.

That's right, I think they're just fine, and there is nothing wrong with having them. It's been said that they chip away at the purity of the democratic process, and that these people could be responsible for inducing apathy party-wide. It's been said that they are in cahoots with party bosses and sit in smoke-filled rooms to hand-pick the candidate who will continue the status quo. These people are in place to produce the candidate that the party wants, not that the people want.

If we have that little faith in the democratic process, then why are we partaking in the primary process, nevertheless covering it so fervently? A vast majority of these people are elected officials, and the rest are respected members of the party or people chosen at the caucus. Moreover, they're all very politically savvy, more than savvy enough to realize when their vote would lead to the destruction of their own party. Elected official or not, the person wants to see the democratic candidate win, and they're not going to be so thoughtless to just throw the hopes of the voters in the garbage in order to vote "with the party."

Here's the problem I've tried to address over and over. The SuperDelegates don't actually vote until the convention. The reason the numbers are different from station to station is because these are "promises" that are given to each media outlet, and apparently are not stable or else everyone would have the same number. If we don't want to give them power, we should stop talking about them. If we never included SuperDelegates in our counts, Hillary and Barack would have been tied after Super Tuesday. Barack would have pulled a significant lead shortly after the massive day, and Hillary would have lost any fragment of momentum. I'm not saying one candidate is superior over another, what I'm saying is that Hillary's continued momentum is mainly due to SuperDelegates who haven't actually voted yet. The media mentions this caveat, and yet continues to act as if Hillary has got these votes in her pocket.

If we're going to blame anyone for the skewing of results, it should be the media. If just one respected outlet (I'm looking at you, Associated Press) would have just stood up and demanded that we only count what's actually there, then we wouldn't worry about how much the SuperDelegates were going to effect the outcome. In the end, if the populous was still honestly tied by a couple dozen delegates, then it would make sense to ask our elected officials and longtime party members to weigh in, and few of us would complain.

39 comments:

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