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  1. vision 2020
    Can Democrats Force Joe Biden Off of the Ticket?With Tara Reade’s allegations now front and center, Biden skeptics are speculating about pushing him out of the nomination, but it wouldn’t be easy.
  2. politics
    What Happens to Delegates When Their Candidate Quits?Buttigieg and Klobuchar didn’t acquire many pledged delegates before dropping out, but Bloomberg and Warren could be different.
  3. vision 2020
    The Democrats Slouch Toward a Contested ConventionIf Super Tuesday leaves Democrats with multiple viable candidacies and delegate-snagging stragglers, no one may have a majority before Milwaukee.
  4. vision 2020
    2020 Democrats Are Beginning to Worry About a Contested ConventionA contested convention would make superdelegates, whose power on the first ballot has been eliminated, big dogs in subsequent ballots.
  5. 2020 presidential election
    Yes, a Contested Convention Could Actually Happen in 2020It’s still not likely to happen, but a vast Democratic field and proportional delegate awards could make things interesting in Milwaukee.
  6. 2020 presidential election
    Is Chaotic 2020 the Right Time for Democrats to Neuter Superdelegates?It makes sense to let voters rather than superdelegates control presidential nominations. But 2020 could be the exception that proves the rule.
  7. democratic party
    Democrats Vote to Strip Power From Superdelegates, Reform CaucusesFollowing the contentious 2016 primaries, the DNC embraced the biggest reforms to its presidential nomination process since the 1980s.
  8. Sanders-Clinton Commission Agrees on Changes to Make the Primaries More OpenIt’s just one step toward unity, but fewer superdelegates, more oversight of the DNC, and less convoluted Iowa caucuses could help.
  9. Democrats Could Have a 2020 Presidential Field As Large As an Iowa CornfieldSanders, Biden, or Warren may run in 2020 and clear the field of pretenders. If not, Democrats could have the kind of field the GOP sported in 2016.
  10. politics
    Sanders Admits the Nomination Isn’t Rigged, But Superdelegates Should Swing ItBernie wants superdelegates to take a “hard look” at Hillary and her email scandal, independent of the vote totals.
  11. Clinton Should Tell Superdelegates to Support Pledged Delegate WinnerDoing so would help her seize momentum and start bringing the party back together. 
  12. Sanders to Court the Corrupt Establishment The superdelegate system was designed to prevent an insurgent nominee like Sanders. Now it may be his only hope for winning the primary.
  13. Sanders Wins Big in New Hampshire! Now He’s Only 352 Delegates Behind Clinton!Overcoming Hillary Clinton’s huge head start among superdelegates is going to be a challenge. 
  14. early and often
    Superdelegates Still Super, Say SuperdelegatesDemocrats keep superdelegates but make them slightly less influential.
  15. early and often
    Why Clinton Needs to Drop Out: Pundits Pile OnIs there really a good reason for her to stop, other than widespread impatience with the primary process? According to the pundits, there are a lot of good reasons!
  16. early and often
    Superdelegates Still Thinking, But About What?We look into the issues and pressures that they are mulling over this week.
  17. early and often
    Big Window Opens for ClintonClinton’s second wind may last only until the next primaries are decided or it may have come too late to change the end result of the race, no matter what happens on May 6. Either way, right now she’s psyched.
  18. early and often
    Superdelegates Making Howard Dean Just Want to ScreamNo mere man can control the will of the superdelegates, a rogue and fractious species if ever there was one. Especially because, as a group, they really have no idea what to do.
  19. early and often
    The Long View: Bittergate’s Lasting EffectsOne would assume that insulting a large block of swing voters is not a good thing, but perhaps they’ve been too busy hunting, praying, and hating immigrants to really care.
  20. early and often
    Can Hillary Clinton Win?To do so, the junior senator from New York must make the right pitch, or gain enough momentum, to win over the superdelegates, those now-omnipotent stars of the Democratic party who will have to push one candidate over the top.
  21. in other news
    Spitzer’s Sex Scandal Sullies Superdelegate Status This Spitzer business is just about the only thing that could have overshadowed coverage of the presidential race (there’s a primary today, remember? Anybody?), but it pertains to Clinton, too. Spitzer is a superdelegate pledged to Hillary Clinton — until he resigns, at least, which is widely expected. Once he does, Spitzer will lose his vote, and another superdelegate pledged to Clinton, Lieutenant Governor David Paterson, will take his seat. Paterson can’t vote twice, so in effect, that means the total superdelegate count goes down by one — and Clinton loses one of her precious votes. But there is a slim hope for the delegate-starved Clinton yet.
  22. early and often
    But Will the Endless Race Tear the Party Apart? Woooo! Hillary won! Things are going to be exciting now. She’s back in it to win it. Or is she? As the confetti settles from last night, pundits have begun repeating their long-practiced warnings: In order to really capture the nomination, Hillary still has to pull some political moves that will tear the Democratic party asunder. Whether it’s a continued onslaught of attack ads, a bid to seat Michigan and Florida delegates, or a last-minute coup of the election by superdelegates, many are still afraid of what Clinton’s actions might mean for the party base. • Jonathan Alter does the math using Slate’s Delegate Calculator (predicting generous Clinton victories), and still thinks she can’t win without superdelegates, even if she gets a rerun in Michigan and Florida. [Newsweek] • Charles Hurt, who called Hill the “strife of the party,” warns that if superdelegates actually do give her the nomination despite overwhelming demand for Obama, “many of his supporters — including the party’s crucial bloc of black voters — will desert the party.” [NYP]
  23. early and often
    Hillary Eyes Obama’s Pledged DelegatesForget the battle over superdelegates; the Clinton campaign has decided to turn regular delegates into wild cards. Though the handful of citizens that you vote for on primary day are “pledged” to a candidate, they are not bound to vote for that candidate at the convention. “Pledged delegates are not really pledged at all, not even on the first ballot,” writes Roger Simon on Politico.com. “This has been an open secret in the party for years, but it has never really mattered because there has almost always been a clear victor by the time the convention convened.” A senior Clinton campaign official confirmed to him that “as we get closer to the convention, if it is a stalemate, everybody will be going after everybody’s delegates… All the rules will be going out the window.” This is going to sound baaaaad to voters who went through the trouble of pulling the lever for each delegate under their chosen candidate’s name, thinking that they were selecting people who would automatically help his or her cause. Also, after Hillary’s well-publicized efforts to seat delegates from Michigan and Florida (where she won handily) at the convention even though they were punished by the DNC, this is going to come off as particularly underhanded. The Clinton official who says that “everybody will be going after everybody’s delegates” may be correct. But the fact that we’re hearing about Clinton considering it first is going to reflect poorly on her. It just sounds like she’s playing dirty. This is where Barack Obama’s high-school-basketball years are coming in to his advantage. As anyone who has ever played ball knows, if you’re going to steal the ball by fouling an opposing player, you don’t announce it to the refs before you do it. Clinton Targets Pledged Delegates [Politico]
  24. early and often
    One Superdelegate Wavers, America Holds Its BreathThere are nearly 800 superdelegates voting in the Democratic primary, and literally hundreds of them are still undecided. There’s a lot of time before they’ll have to decide, too. So the fact that one of them has possibly switched his position shouldn’t really be a big deal, right? Ha! Don’t be ridiculous. We know by now that everything in this campaign is a big deal. So when word broke last night that Representative John Lewis (D-Georgia) either defected or is considering defecting, from the Clinton camp to the Obama camp, we knew there was a pundit tizzy in the making. Lewis is a well-known civil-rights leader and possibly Clinton’s most prominent African-American supporter. Just the fact that this is happening may be a sign that some of those early Clinton backers, especially African-Americans, are having a change of heart. Or it may just mean that one dude changed his mind. Luckily for you, there are plenty of people to decide what it means, so you don’t have to. • Jeff Zeleny and Patrick Healy report that Representative Lewis said he could “‘never, ever do anything to reverse the action’ of the voters of his district, who overwhelmingly supported Mr. Obama.” Even if he hasn’t officially endorses yet, they write he could do so within days. [NYT] • Mark Halperin thinks that if Representative Lewis defects to Obama, Clinton’s odds of winning the nomination will be cut in half. [Page/Time]
  25. early and often
    Surprise! The Democratic Primary Might Still Be About White MenHey everybody, guess what? Remember how you thought this Democratic primary race was historic because it was all about choosing between a woman and a black man? And the real contest was over winning the female, black, and Hispanic votes? What a refreshing change you thought it was! But of course, you, like all of us, are a huge chump, because it’s still white men who will probably be choosing the Democratic candidate. See, roughly half of the superdelegates are white men. According to Politico.com, that puts more than 350 delegate votes in the hands of Establishment honkies. “It’s still the old guard, the white men. They always want to control the outcome,” said an anonymous superdelegate, who is still hopeful that they’ll split the vote among themselves. In a race where the current delegate count has a split of less than 100, a bloc of 350 could decide the outcome. Right now at least 81 of the white men are for Clinton, and 63 are for Obama, which roughly represents the divide between all of the pledged delegates so far. Still, when so much attention is being put on the power of these 796 unaffiliated voters, any whiff of unfairness is sure to raise a stink. It also raises the first opportunity for us to ask our boss if it’s okay for us to use the word “honky.” White men hold superdelegate power balance [Politico]
  26. early and often
    Should Superdelegates Follow the ‘Will of the People’? Or, Uh, Not? Whether you think superdelegates are as useless as a third nipple or a great way to get the party elite more involved in the nomination process, you have to at least admit they’ve made for very interesting political discussion. And despite a certain candidate’s momentum, said superdelegates are going to have to help decide this thing. Obama says the superdelegates should follow the “will of the people” (a phrase that will be used seven times in this post) by supporting whoever has more pledged delegates; Clinton maintains that the superdelegates should do whatever they think is best. Both positions, of course, reflect where each camp expects to stand after the last primary votes are tallied on June 7, in Puerto Rico. But like a lot of things in this race, the debate over superdelegates isn’t quite so simple. Plus, a bonus round: Should the regular Florida and Michigan delegates be seated?
  27. early and often
    New York’s Superdelegates: Who Are They, and What Are They Going to Do?Man, the election is all about the superdelegates these days, huh? As Obama surges into the Potomac primary, the press remains unwilling to start making predictions about a serious downturn in Hillary’s chances. They’ve learned their lesson from New Hampshire, after all: There’s no telling what will happen in this race. Instead, the media is focusing on getting hysterical about superdelegates, and the possibility that the influence of those 796 unpledged party officials will swing the primary results away from the will of the voting public. But who are New York’s superdelegates? Who are these people who have the power to, well, take power away from us? They include Hillary Clinton, Bill Clinton, Chuck Schumer, Eliot Spitzer, our 23 Democratic congressmen, and Democratic National Committee officials like Randi Weingarten. Many of the above have worked extensively with Hillary Clinton since she was elected senator and are likely to swing her way. Today, the Sun spoke with Congresswoman Nydia Velazquez, who is one of our Clinton supporters. “I’ll be with Hillary to the end,” said Velazquez, when asked about critics of the superdelegate system who would like it to more accurately reflect the will of the people.
  28. early and often
    Hillary Adapts to the Changes in the GameYesterday, Hillary Clinton’s campaign manager, Patti Solis Doyle, stepped down. Doyle, long Hillary’s right-hand woman, said she hadn’t expected the primary to run on so long and wanted to get out of the race for personal reasons. She was replaced by Maggie Williams, a former aide to Bill Clinton when he was president and another longtime ally of Hillary’s. Williams, according to the Daily News, is a tough fighter who has engaged in many legal battles on behalf of the Clintons. She’s also been used by the couple in the past to boost their likability with African-Americans. The turnover came swiftly on the heels of four Obama wins over the weekend, in primaries in Maine, Washington state, Nebraska, and Louisiana. Obama now holds a small delegate lead. The appointment of Williams seems to indicate that Hillary is in fighting mode again, and we remember how that went last month. But according to The Wall Street Journal, it might not be the only big shift in her team and strategy. Harold Ickes, who has been a longtime Clinton helper, might also get an “expanded role.”