Friday, February 15, 2008

Superdelegates: Let The Voters Decide

I received an email from the Obama campaign today asking me to share my story as to why I support an Obama nomination. My story, it said, would then be forwarded to a superdelegate.

Let me be honest, I normally delete campaign email quickly. That's me. I do support an Obama nomination, but my interests in this campaign have been on how the campaigns are organized, and the excitement of seeing headlines like "Record Voter Turnout" in my morning newspaper, and in general I do not respond to or find myself motivated by generic campaign messaging (color me jaded).

But today, after reading the "Share Your Story" email today, I shared my story. I understand it is in Obama's interest to oppose non-elected superdelegates' allegiances in his bid to secure the nomination, as the popular vote seems to be going his way. But I argue to all Democrats reading this that -- Clinton and Obama supporters alike -- it is also in our best interest to do the same.

The nomination should be decided by a majority of citizen voters. Simply. Pledged delegates and caucus results are bound to this public majority. Superdelegates are not.

At risk here is something larger than not seeing your preferred candidate become the nominee. The turnout of this disagreement risks undermining the voice of millions of voters, activists, volunteers, and donors. In short, the fundraising and activist coalitions that have been built that will further a Democratic majority in the future, strengthening the party with each election won, are hanging in the balance.

The mere possibility that the voice of the electorate could be stifled by a party insider decision is frightening. The severity of disenfranchisement that such an outcome would produce could be more damaging to the Democratic Party than a loss in 2008 could ever be. It was best said in a similar email I received from Democracy for America:

This is not about Senators Clinton or Obama. This is about who chooses the Democratic Nominee. Should it be the 20 million Democratic voters so far and the millions more yet to vote? Or should it be the less than 800 party insiders?

We believe the answer is obvious. Let the voters decide.
Speak up. Share your story, and sign the Voters Decide petition. And while you're at it, tell CNN to tell the truth about how the superdelegates function inside of the party.

1 comment:

  1. I love your argument, but I highly doubt it would sway someone away from Hilary. Just my opinion, though.

    I feel sorry for a lot of the dems if Obama doesn't take it. It would be pretty damn hard to stomach the loss of the popular vote with Al Gore and THEN with Hilary if she takes it.

    I wonder if the outcry will be as fierce as they are both in the same party as opposed to being on different sides of the aisle?