Slog News & Arts

Line Out

Music & Nightlife

« Missing Person | Repo Man 2: The Repo-ning »

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Clinton’s Black Superdelegates Wavering

posted by on February 14 at 17:40 PM

I know there’s been a lot of talk on Slog about this idea that superdelegates should follow the will of their constituencies. But what do the superdelegates themselves think about this argument? Well, at least two of Clinton’s black superdelegates sound like they’re going to use the argument as cover to switch to Obama.

(WASHINGTON) In a fresh sign of trouble for Hillary Rodham Clinton, one of the former first lady’s congressional black supporters intends to vote for Barack Obama at the Democratic National Convention, and a second, more prominent lawmaker is openly discussing a possible switch.

Rep. David Scott’s defection and Rep. John Lewis’ remarks highlight one of the challenges confronting Clinton in a campaign that pits a black man against a woman for a nomination that historically has been the exclusive property of white men.

You’ve got to represent the wishes of your constituency,” Scott said in an interview Wednesday in the Capitol. “My proper position would be to vote the wishes of my constituents.” The third-term lawmaker represents a district that gave more than 80 percent of its vote to Obama in the Feb. 5 Georgia primary.

RSS icon Comments


The Clinton spin machine will try to discredit Scott and Lewis in 10, 9, 8 ...

Posted by Bub | February 14, 2008 5:57 PM

I don't get what this has to do with it being a black man and a white woman.

Posted by Levislade | February 14, 2008 6:04 PM

I think it's time for Sens Kerry and Kennedy and Gov Patrick to switch their support to Clinton, if they're going to be consistent.

Posted by lorax | February 14, 2008 6:09 PM


Posted by josh | February 14, 2008 6:30 PM

Especially because they're white.

Posted by johnnie | February 14, 2008 6:30 PM

My comment was meant for the little guy who speaks for the trees, of course. Not josh.

Posted by johnnie | February 14, 2008 6:31 PM

The super delegate system sucks and should be abolished. It should be 100% up to the will of the people. Didn't Gore teach us anything? Damn. And you can't expect the Clinton delegates go to Obama (i.e. Cantwell) unless you make the Obama delegates go to Clinton (i.e. Kennedy).

Posted by Suz | February 14, 2008 6:41 PM

@3 you are the politics of the past.
Change means that when the state goes for Obama, they have to look to their constituents and go for Obama. So, Murray and Cantwell should switch and be for Obama. But Kennedy or Kerry should look to a broader picture, to Idaho and Washington State and SC as well as Mass, and go for Obama, too.

You can't see the consistency here, just like you can't see the transcendency of the Obama movement.

Hopefully, when we get to the convention, we will keep out the delegates from Florida and Michigan. They want to block change. If we can control who gets to vote in the meeting, we can control the result, just like in 1933.

Change is a comin' so if you oppose it with false cries for consistency you are historically obsolete and tied to the past and you need to get out of the way.

Posted by Fluxophiliac | February 14, 2008 6:43 PM

For what it's worth, if I lived in MA I would expect Clinton supporters to lobby their Senators in the same way. I happen to live in WA, and I happen to support Obama, so that's the way I'm lobbying. I'm not sure why people think those of us who would like our senators to vote with their state assume we don't think senators from clinton-supporting states should do the same thing (or at least be lobbied to do so by their voters).

Posted by Levislade | February 14, 2008 6:53 PM

If superdelegates (those in elected office at least) had to vote the same way as their constituents, wouldn't that make them fairly pointless? They should just vote for whoever they think is the better choice for the party.

Posted by banjoboy | February 14, 2008 7:26 PM

To be fair to all, abolish the super delegates. In fact, many of them are out of touch with their constituencies anyway. Both the Dem & Rep parties are jokes. We need to move past these antiquated systems, including the electoral college. Popular votes are the ONLY way to go.

Posted by Fitz | February 14, 2008 8:00 PM

Um, how can they be "out of touch with their constituencies" when they were for the most part recently elected by those same constituencies?

Posted by Fnarf | February 14, 2008 8:37 PM


Comments like that just make you sound like a glassy eyed cult member. "Transcendency?!" Obama is not the Messiah, he is a just a man. A smart man with excellent ideas and a gift for oratory, but a man nonetheless.

As for your argument, it makes no sense. A superdelegate represents the state he/she is from, not the others, and should vote accordingly. That said, I think the superdelegate situation will work itself out, as Josh said. Everyone just calm down.

Posted by Babaloo | February 14, 2008 8:44 PM

Babs, I believe it was a parody.

Posted by johnnie | February 14, 2008 9:12 PM

Fnarf, some of the super delegates I'm referring to no longer hold office. And, I follow Southern and Mid-Atlantic politics closely. The voters are tired of their representatives not listening and are on the verge of removing them from office. Personally, I think Maria "vote for the Iraq war" Cantwell needs to go. And although McDermott voted against the war, he is useless, and needs to go too.

Posted by Fitz | February 14, 2008 9:37 PM

Oh, does he really?

Look, I can't frigging stand Jim McDermott, but even I think that the voters in his district, who returned him to Congress less than two years ago, are better qualified to make that determination than one anonymous guy named "Fitz" on the internets.

The vast majority of superdelegates are sitting elected officials. Feel free to argue that superdelegates should be done away with, but please don't start by suggesting that they have no constituencies.

Posted by Fnarf | February 14, 2008 11:26 PM

I think since we're stuck with this lame superdelegate system (in this election at least)superdelegates should be free to vote their "conscience". We can't change that midstream. However individual Superdelegates CAN change their committment midstrea.

As elected officials their constituients should remind, plead, guilt, cajole, and pressure them to vote for whomever said constituents prefer. Hillary supporters should be sending emails and letters to Ted Kennedy if they feel this way. I don't see as much call to do this (any MA sloggers here?), perhaps because the Clinton supporters know they don't have as many pesky "activists"? Also, they should also look at the national popular vote % and, yes, go with their superior insider hunch on who they think is the most Electable come November.

To me encouraging Superdelegates to change their vote is reminding them of their autonomy, not changing the rules. Just because they said they'd support Hillary/Obama back in May doesn't mean they have to now.

Posted by Jason | February 15, 2008 6:46 AM

Fnarf, I am in McDermott's district, and will continue voting against him. He does not "represent" me or my beliefs. I'm not sure why you are arguing what I feel and think.

Posted by Fitz | February 15, 2008 7:19 AM


LOL. It is hard to tell sometimes-a lot of what some Obama supporters write on Slog sounds so outrageous as to be a joke...then it turns out they are sincere!

Posted by Babaloo | February 15, 2008 10:18 AM

@18 - you and the other 8 percent of voters ...

Posted by Will in Seattle | February 15, 2008 11:07 AM

Comments Closed

In order to combat spam, we are no longer accepting comments on this post (or any post more than 14 days old).