During the battle for the Democratic presidential nomination two years ago, there was always a chance that, even while Barack Obama held a clear delegate lead over Hillary Clinton for months as a result of his superior performance in the primaries, the superdelegates Democratic congressmen and senators, party luminaries, and members of the Democratic National Committee would manage to push Clinton over the top at the convention. Why should a few hundred party elites even have the power to override the party’s choice? many people wondered then. Let’s get rid of this weird system, others said.
And so the DNC Rules and Bylaws Committee, which is composed of superdelegates, recently held a vote on whether to keep superdelegates. And astonishingly, the superdelegates decided that there was nothing wrong with the existence of superdelegates. But to appease regular Democratic voters, they did give superdelegates slightly less influence in the future — 15 percent of the total delegate vote, instead of 20 percent.