Forlorn over the Democrats’ delegate scrap, Gov.—and therefore superdelegate—Philip Bredesen came up with a modestly novel proposal : After all the voters have fun at their primaries and caucuses, the superdelegates should stage their own fiesta in June—complete with a binding declaration of support for Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton. Morevoer, they should have it in Dallas so that everybody can get there easily and the Dems can continue lavishing attention on a red state that has shown flashes of Democratic enthusiasm this year.
It’s a dynamite idea—one part common sense, one part idealism—and therefore exactly the kind of plan we’ve gotten used to the candidates eschewing this election. Yet, at a press conference yesterday,
Hillary Clinton let out an unexpected glimmer
The governor from Tennessee suggested that there be a convention of superdelegates, and I think that it is an intriguing idea. I have not considered it long enough to have an opinion on it.
If she hasn’t “considered it long enough,” then that means she has considered it a little bit. (
Clinton folks tell Ambinder
they aren’t seriously considering the plan.) There’s hope yet! And, in the long run, that’s best for everybody. The superdelegate primary presents a rare opportunity for a win-win-win-win scenario for Clinton, Obama, the superdelegates, and the Democrats. Here’s why each party should be jumping at the chance:
Hillary: A June superdelegate primary silences the “drop out now” movement for a few months. Clinton has repeatedly said she’s staying in until June, anyway, and the specter of a superdelegate primary would give her justification for doing so. Plus, it buys her time in case she loses North Carolina and Indiana.
If Hillary isn’t going to leave the race until all of the states vote, anyway, then he may as well end it as swiftly and decisively as possible after that. A superdelegate primary would give him that venue, and he’d be favored to win since he would be the
champ of pledged delegates and popular vote
The superdelegates: Uncommitted supers get to defer their decisions for another three months, which prevents them from incurring the Clintons’ wrath if they side with Obama before all the votes are in. Plus, having a primary lends the superdelegate process a bit of integrity and transparency that might otherwise may get lost in translation at the convention.
Democratic Party: The sooner this fiasco ends, the better. Assuming Clinton stays in through June, this plan is much better than dragging the superdelegate-endorsement process through the dog days of summer. It already makes Howard Dean sweaty enough, as is.