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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 4/15/16

Sharing the Democratic Super-Delegates

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I did more numbers crunching, now that it's clear, at least to me, that neither Bernie Sanders nor Hillary Clinton will reach the magic 2,383 number of pledged (voted) delegates needed to win the Democratic Party's nomination on the first ballot, which means that the super-delegates will be determining the Democratic Party presidential nominee in July.

In the 37 primaries/caucuses so far this spring, when Mainstream Media reports the number of delegates for each candidate, they list the pledged (voted) delegates earned in each state, but then they always include ALL of the super-delegate numbers that each candidate claims (promised, but not delivered), even those for states and territories that have yet to vote. Talk about stuffing the ballot boxes before the first vote is cast!

The pledged vote totals so far (with New York next week), are 1309 for Clinton and 1095 for Sanders. Their soft unpledged (super) numbers to date, according to, are 480 for Hillary Clinton and a mere 40 for Bernie Sanders. That puts the MSM numbers currently at 1,789 for Hillary and 1,135 for Bernie.

But what happens if only the soft unpledged numbers in just the already-voted states are counted? Hillary can only claim 263 promised (super) votes, not the 480 that is usually automatically added. Bernie has 27 by that same measure, not the 40 in his overall super-delegate column.

Using only the numbers from the states that have voted so far, that means we have 1,572 pledged and soft delegates for Hillary, and 1,122 for Bernie.

However, when situations arise like Wyoming -- where Bernie won the state by 12 percentage points, but Hillary got more delegates than he did added to her side of the ledger -- slowly, people are coming to realize that the super-delegate situation is screwy, and patently unfair.

I ran another spreadsheet of those 37 ballots so far, to see where we would be if each state's super-delegates were assigned, not based on which candidate they swore allegiance to, but proportionately in each state, like the pledged (voted) delegates.

Based on the percentage vote totals, Hillary would have only 203 super-delegates. And Bernie would have 187 -- including 25 from the eight deep-South states where Hillary picked up a third of her pledged delegates (437) and from whence she claims 60 supers.

Adding those numbers to their pledged delegates, the real, honest, delegate totals at this point in time would be (should be) Hillary Clinton 1,513, Bernie Sanders 1,282, a spread of 231 in Hillary's favor.

With 1,647 pledged delegates yet to be earned, 247 next Tuesday in New York alone, that puts a different perspective on the situation.

Super-delegates across the nation who pledged to Hillary early-on might be reluctant to switch allegiances, and the Clinton camp is livid about the possibility (Re: LA Times March 28 article "Bernie Sanders has a plan to hijack Hillary Clinton's superdelegates").

But even some super-delegates who signed on to the "inevitability" of the Clinton nomination last summer might respond to the proportionality concept, particularly if they are running for reelection in one of the many states where Bernie won by a landslide.

The bottom line is that, by my calculations, Bernie Sanders needs several hundred super-delegates on his side going into the July convention to win this one on the first ballot.

July's Democratic Party convention will certainly be interesting to watch.

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Writer and political activist Jean Hay Bright is now semi-retired, running an organic farm in Dixmont Maine with her husband David Bright. Her two political books are "Proud to be a Card-Carrying, Flag-Waving, Patriotic American Liberal (1996), (more...)

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