"These prominent Democrats can name additional superdelegates, giving them control over multiple convention votes, and that could be the difference in a race that may not be decided until the August convention."While Barack Obama has been leading the popular vote, Hillary Clinton has more superdelegate committments -- though that lead is shrinking. Still, the race could be decided by "important party-members" rather than the public, which would not bode well for peace at the convention. Remember Chicago 1968?
Can superdelegates thwart the will of the majority? Evidently so, according to Democratic National Committee Chairman, and declawed firebrand, Howard Dean, who says superdelegates should not feel compelled to reflect the popular vote. He also said superdelegates were free to weigh the disputed primary results in Florida and Michigan, primaries where Obama didn't campaign, and in the case of Michigan wasn't even on the ballot.
That's good news for Hillary. With recent reports that the former First Lady was privately telling senior Democrats that rival Obama is unelectable, a new light is cast on the power of superdelegates and the way they are lobbied. Are these powerful citizens -- and they are still only citizens, after all -- really the equivalent of the House of Lords, a safeguard against commoners having too much decision-making power? Are they good for us?
The whole thing stinks, if you ask me. Why should we be stuck with the will of the people when it makes mistakes (i.e. sides with powerful interests) and denied that will when there is a progressive grassroots movement for change (i.e. a challenge to powerful interests). You know why, right?
One more thing. Superdelegates can spawn more superdelegates. From the AP: "The clout of the nearly 800 superdelegates is unprecedented in this year's race because neither Obama nor Clinton can clinch the nomination with only the delegates won in state primaries and caucuses. Largely overlooked in the arcane process, though, is the power of a select few to complete the superdelegate ranks by naming 76 newbies, and Clinton and Obama are fighting hard over every one of those from state conventions to back rooms."