1 year ago

Anti-Superdelegate Movement Gains Support Among Clinton’s VP Shortlist

Bernie Sanders’ superdelegate revolution keeps growing. This time the momentum is coming from the heart of Hillary Clinton’s base: DC politicians. Today, Politico reported that a growing number of senators, all of whom are superdelegates themselves, now favor some form of superdelegate reform:

“Politico interviewed nearly 20 of Sanders’ colleagues over the past week and found a surprisingly strong appetite for change, including among influential members of the party establishment such as Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.), a top prospect for vice president. More than half the senators surveyed support at least lowering the number of superdelegates, and all but two said the party should take up the matter at next month’s convention in Philadelphia, despite the potential for a high-profile intraparty feud at a critical moment in the campaign.”

Significantly, among the senators on record supporting superdelegate reform are two potential Clinton vice presidential picks. Senator Tim Kaine (D-VA), who is regularly considered as on the short list, emphasized the fact that superdelegates subvert the will of primary and caucus voters:

“Some party officials are looking for a workaround. One option under discussion is binding superdelegates’ votes to the results in their state. ‘Having party leaders participate is fine but I think having some connection to the outcome of your state’s process is smart,’ said Kaine, a former Democratic National Committee chairman.”

While another potential Clinton pick, Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH), underscored that a failure by the DNC to address superdelegate grievances by Sanders and his supporters could be a significant obstacle in the way of Democratic unity:

“’I want Bernie in the fold, I want him enthusiastic,’ said Sen. Sherrod Brown of Ohio, another potential VP choice. ‘I’m fine with whatever they negotiate, I just don’t care about superdelegates. I don’t care about the whole thing.’”

Without the superdelegate status quo the Democratic race for president would still be an open contest, headed to Philadelphia. The movement toward superdelegate reform is only going to grow headed into the DNC Convention, making it certain that without changes to the superdelegate status quo, Democratic unity will be impossible.