Wednesday, February 6, 2008

So what the fuck ARE superdelegates anyway?

I noticed that in all the hullabaloo about the "Super Tuesday" and the importance of superdelegates, no one on TV or the radio explained just who or what the fuck are they. Going with the common sense assumption that almost everything you look at in detail in the Yoo Ess of Ey is fucked up - the more you scratch the surface, the more absurd things become.

That theory never fails.

So, to wit: about the super dooper candidates.

Officially, a superdelegate is "An elected official or political party leader who attends a presidential nominating convention and who may or may not have made a commitment to vote for a candidate."

OK, in English please...
The explains it thusly:
"Since the 1980s, the Democratic Party has included a number of “superdelegates” as part of its presidential nominating process. These delegates participate in the national convention, but are not selected by primary or caucus.

In 2004, there are 715 superdelegates, including Democrats from the following constituencies:

* Members of the Democratic National Committee
* Members of the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives
* Sitting state governors
* Mayor of Washington, D.C.
* “Distinguished party leaders” that include former presidents, vice-presidents and chairmen of the national committee.

The party explains that these delegates are needed to retain faithfulness to Democratic ideals. Critics, however, charge that the superdelegates are designed to block insurgent movements that would reduce the influence of party professionals."

Ah ok. So another word for superdelegates is cronies. Democratic Party insiders. These people do not have to vote the way the citizens in their home state vote.

In fact, their vote is independent of the Democratic Party's voters. They can vote (or not) for whomever they personally like. On a whim. And their vote counts. Even when one Democratic superdelegate endorsed bush jr in 2004 - probably by mistake. This would be funny if it wasn't happening in my country, which dares to call itself democratic... Special Notes: "There are currently 4,049 total delegates to the Democratic National Convention, including 3,253 pledged delegates and 796 superdelegates. The total number of delegate votes needed to win the nomination is 2,025"

So Hillary or Obama needs 2,025 delegates to win. The superdelegates are roughly 39% of this "magic number" of delegates that are needed to win.

Think about it. Almost 40% of delegate votes that make up the 2,025 needed for Hillary or Obama to win are cronies. Unaccountable to the American voter. Can vote for bush, hitler or my grandma for president if the whim strikes them.

These are people who are party insiders, who in nominating a Democratic Party nominee for president are not beholden in their delegate vote to anybody or anything... except their own personal whimsy.

But of course there is more to it than that. If you apply the twin dangerous weapons logic and common sense to this issue, you will (hopefully) see that the superdelegates are incredibly vulnerable to political pressure from their party.

Simply put, they may vote for a candidate such as Hillary because they are afraid that if they do not, the Democratic Leadership Conference (DLC) may not support them anymore in their reelection campaigns, or may try to displace them with someone more malleable.

This leads to a total balls up fucked up absurdity such as Howard Dean taking an early lead in delegates before even the first primaries were held in 2004. So at that point Howard Dean was the leading presidential contender to become a Democratic Party nominee... before any voting took place. To me this is insane - to you, as an American born in this country, you are probably used to common day absurdity like that... who knows...

A Daily Kos diarist:

Even though Obama has won more delegates from the votes of the people of this country, Clinton is in the lead by 72 delegates. Why? Because the primary process allows "superdelegates", elected officeholders and party officials, to have their votes recorded. Why is this fair? Talk about power in the hands of the few. Clinton received 87 more superdelegate votes than Obama, probably from Washington insiders who she and Bill have been in bed with for the past 16 years. I'm mad that my vote today is being upstaged by the votes of the powerful. Let's let the media and the country know that we are pissed off about this.

This makes me upset because it has a tangible effect on the way people will vote today. When people see that Hilary has such a delegate lead, they think she is more "electable" and vote for her.

Another Only in America bullshit that very few really know about. Behind every story you read about America, it seems to me that when you scratch the surface, you hit some kind of an absurdity...

And don't think that the Republican Party does not have its own version of this.
A good blog post on both parties "whimsy delegates"is here, in

"The best explanation I've seen for superdelegates came from The Tahlequah Daily Press in Oklahoma last week. "The essential purpose of superdelegates is to maintain some control of the nominating process by establishment party elites"

This is a democracy?

No - this is corruption of democracy.

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opi said...

I never could put my finger on this idea. It sounds so bad I don't actually get how it was passed in first place.

In Poland few guys runs with or without party support and you can vote on anyone you like. Sure, they need to get initial amount of signatures from supporters, but that's a pice of cake.

Why can't Obama and Clinton start? Or Ron Paul and Rommey? Why do Dems and GOP has to have one-candidate-with-support? I don't quite get it.

Can you cast some light on that?

AmericanGoy said...

This is a 2 party system.

Each party nominates only one candidate for president - that is it. It's just the way the system works here.

While many Democrats run for president this election (Dodd, Gravel, Kucinich), the media only focused on Obama and Clinton, effectively ignoring the other candidates.

By ignoring them, and calling them "fringe" candidates (as in they have no chance to win), this became a self fulfilling prophecy.

From the beginning it was Obama and Clinton, and that was how the script was written. The TV barely mentioned other candidates. The Republican side will be ignored (and is ignored on TV mostly) because the USA needs to look better in the world - and a woman or a black president will accomplish this "Public Relations" exercise, while continuing the same policies around the world.

Another reason is money. Running a campaign for president, traveling around the country, buying ads on TV, costs a lot of money.

For example, Obama raised $102,170,668 (that's 102 million of dollars) for his campaign by Dec 31 2007. Can you imagine multiple candidates running for president now?

The establishment, the business give money to the candidates for president, and once he(or she) wins, expects its interests to be represented. After all, they don't just give a 100 million dollars for the hell of it...

Running for president is more about business than what is good for American citizens.

Hope that helps.

Anonymous said...

i would rather blame the citizenry for accepting and perpetuating the false notion that no options exist beyond two parties -- a terrible system, indeed.

of course, it's obvious why the principal actors want to maintain the status quo.

i find the electoral college more suspect than superdelegates, though. with the former we're actually electing people for office... not so with the latter.

Anonymous said...

You'll like this. I wake up thinking , "So who the fuck are the superdelegates?". It's Saturday, what the hell, let's find out. I click on 3 sites, all of which froze up while loading. Okay, I have dial-up. I reboot and the same thing. I decide to hit shopping sites and I'm in like Flynn. Is that Patriot-Act great or what?!! Shopping good-info bad! Not paranoid, just amused.
If I didn't know any better, I'd think this was a Republican plot. Unfortunately, it's equal-opportunity buzz-kill for the election process. I predict the lowest voter turn-out ever.
First, the world's longest campaign is wearing on the steadfast. Second, the superdelegates will be wallowing in some sort of shadow-government plot no one understands. And third, The electoral college, which seemed to be explained for the first time ever in the last election, will be the finale for the disenchanted. It's going to be "The Who-Gives-A-Shit-Election". Confuse and diffuse?!!
At least the French march in the streets and raise hell! Must be hibernation-time on the home-front. I'm always reminded that Marx said Communism would come from within. Silly me.

effexor birth injury attorney said...

I never quite saw this problem from your perspective if it wasnt for this article. Thanks for opening my eyes.

Unknown said...

I can sum up super-delegates in two words,'organized corruption'

Anonymous said...

I wondered, who the hell are these super-delegates I keep hearing about.
So I Googled it, and I come to find out, these are 715 CRONIES created
by the Democratic party elites, in order to give the Democratic party
the opportunity to put their finger on the scale and prevent the American
people from nominating whoever the hell, they elect.
In essence, a safeguard these communists created themselves, in order
to guarantee themselves, that a COMMUNIST government prevails!
This is an OUTRAGE! I, as I am sure most Americans would be horrified
to know that their votes do not count! The only alternative would be
for the entire country to unite, overthrow and jail, all of these filthy
corrupted officials. They shouldn't be hard to find, since the list
starts with these 715!

Anonymous said...

Ex-Military here. Why do you think Obama done it most of the militaries high ranking Officials and people in charge of the alphabet club's first? And then joked for a while, (WASN'T LAUGHING) about his mysterious past and birth, his ability to MAKE LAWS, Martial Law, Gun Control, and the abolishment of our most sacred Constitutional Rights? Hmmm. can I take a stab at that one? Because, it's all GOING to happen. I mean the fact that they have been buying ammo, food and water, body bags, and supplying our Police Departments and even Social Security with firearms and ammo for a couple years now. People need to wake up. Because their definitely doing something, probably noticing the fact that WE are noticing what their doing for once, and it started at the end of Bush's reign. You guys think them talking about censoring the Internet has anything to do with the FUCKING towel heads in the first place? HELL NO, because if the lack of Internet had anything to do with Terrorists NOT forming then we wouldn't of had Terrorists before the 90's in the first place.... but we did. TO me, that's to block stuff like this... people like me, and the guy that started this discussion, spreading the REAL, unfolding the truth, and poking holes in their pathetic explanations. Also, once they start fuckng with us physically, and maybe start displacing people, FEMA Camps, etc. then an active Internet would be a bad thing for them... and they know it. My advice, buy ammo, run weapons drills, learn some basic survival, learn morse code, (Which you can send a morse code signal on the RailRoad lines that run from east to west, that's how it was done when it was invented), or possibly get it done on the backs of power lines, learn how to make a morse code generator.. it's really easy, and then you'll understand how it works. Get a HAM Radio and program it, info online. and maybe a gas mask.. It's never a bad thing to be cautious and ready to push back, when a bully starts picking on the little people. And if nothing happens, and they did all that weird and suspicious shit and unnecessary mass purchases for nothing, then at least you'll have learned and provided some pretty useful skills and equipment for whenever SHTF... Stay Sharp my Friends.