Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Delegates Shmelegates
I can only imagine the extreme ridicule that would be heaped on Obama from the Clinton camp if he tried to argue that the contest should continue despite being way behind in the one metric laid out in the nomination rules: delegates. I don't think it's a stretch to say that it wouldn't occur to Obama or to most of us to even dare make the case that an insurmountable pledged delegate lead should be ignored because he still considers himself a stronger candidate that the party leaders should install as the nominee.

In a very real sense, only the Clintons and their groupies are brazen enough, and selfish enough, (and powerful enough) to openly question the process in this way. Obama would be long gone, if not out of a gracious nod to reality, then at least under intense, heckling, Huckabee-like dismissal. Even if he waited around for it to become mathematically impossible, he would have long since stopped campaigning against the presumed nominee.

This popular vote argument is outrageous, a denial of the rules as they are laid out, and nothing less than an attempted coup by the Clinton power structure, which simply can't face or accept defeat by an outsider. As Obama himself has said, if he had thought that his goal was to win the popular vote, he would have campaigned differently. Much differently. The same as a general election would be conducted differently if popular vote matters. On the (far) outside chance that she overtakes him in the popular vote, superdelegates would still take the party down a generation of revolt to vote her in. And that leads me to the thought that initiated this post to begin with:

From this point on, the superdelegates who have not endorsed are a cowardly bunch and nearly as much to blame as the Clinton campaign for this thing dragging on. Every primary we are forced to endure from here on out is a colossal waste of time, a beauty contest for the sole benefit of the 300 superdelegates remaining. All of the money spent and attacks bringing the Party down are purely for their amusement. Every superdelegate that has not endorsed is now prolonging the process. The only ones who have even an argument for delaying are those in states that have yet to vote. Not many of those left.

Every superdelegate who is for Obama should come out and drive the numbers up and make it mathematically impossible for her to win, ASAP. There's no excuse for waiting beyond political cowardice. You know who is ahead by the rules, and who will be ahead at the end. Either have the nerve to pick against the Party nomination process as decided by the voters (which is surely their right), or get the hell on board.

If they really think there are issues with Obama that make them hesitant to support him, they should say so out loud and detail what those issues are. Yes, they are allowed to stay quiet and wait all the way until the Convention. It is their right. But doing so makes them cowards, and they damage the Party's chances - hence damage the country - in the process.

We shouldn't be waiting for the 4 million or so who are still to vote, because nothing they do will change reality: Obama is in the lead. And will be. 300 people - not 4 million - hold the keys to the nomination. They are the ones making us wait. They should be held accountable for that, starting now.

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