Alright, let’s talk about SuperDelegates and this ridiculous article being passed around.
First a bit of backstory and qualifications as to why you should listen to what I have to say.
In 2016, I organized the DNC Delegates for Bernie Sanders from the grassroots end, no one told me to do it, I just did it. There was at least an attempt to coordinate in all 57 territories. With the work from fantastic organizers like Katie Tillman and her team of people, we were able to get EVERY delegate to the convention.
Leading up to the convention, I tried to lead the delegates to a more successful outcome and in the end, many who fought with me realized later that I was correct about what was going to happen, because it did go precisely the way I said it would. Of course, others were correct too.
After that, I spent the last three years going to all the DNC meetings and lobbying for the SuperDelegate reform. I have many DNC members on my FB friends list. They know me from the meetings and my lobbying efforts.
I crowdsourced my work there, so in the end, you all paid for it. So you might as well listen to my report. I did this for you while being smeared mercilessly as a DNC plant or spy. The truth was I was more your spy, not always being 100% clear which side I was on to the DNC members I spoke to, though they generally figured it out.
Because of DemExit we were not able to secure enough leadership seats, which meant that even though they had some really great work put into them, the Unity Reform Commission and the Amendment put forward by Diane Russell for a 2/3s removal were impossible to accomplish. Because each required a change to the charter and that needs a 2/3s vote.
The final plan was hatched by the ASDC chair Ken Martin and we discussed it at one of the meetings. I was pushing for 2/3s still and he said we were just going to remove them all on the first ballot. The convention rules were the only way and it wasn’t until much later they decided to change the math.
When I say I negotiated the Super Delegate rule what I mean is that I started by doing Live commentary on Selina Vickers live streams, which people like Kerri Barber watched live. After about half a day the Rules and Bylaws, members started watching my commentary and responding to it or acting on it.
By the second day, it became very clear that I understood much of the content better than the DNC’s own Rules and Bylaws membership and they started following my lead. Some things were simply impossible and usually it was the lawyers chiming in.
Many things were covered including the loyalty pledge before we got to the SuperDelegate reform.
After five live streams of back and forth as the attempts were made to break the rule, I fought on my personal page with the architect of rules for the Third way when he tried to make it so that it could be easily changed later.
THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY RULES AND BYLAWS JUST BROKE THE SUPERDELEGATE REFORM! They came incredibly close to a real fix,…
THIS HAPPENED WHILE THE MEETING WAS STILL GOING. We were able to stop him and get the MOST FUNCTIONAL RULE POSSIBLE.
Selina later cut a deal with the very same architect, David McDonald from WA. Using his language precisely, she smeared me, saying I was lying about my work, all so she could push herself as the person that did it. I have a copy of the press ask she sent to a group I worked with.
She has since hidden all the videos, making it impossible to rewatch how we got what we got, and since she didn’t do the actual negotiation or argument development she cannot tell you why it matters, only what happened. I can not make it clear enough that she held a camera while I did the negotiations, though it is still an integral role and none of this would have been possible without her.
But this is why it matters to know who in the movement accomplished what and not let people take credit for others work. We are in a war and when information is your ammunition we need to be either able to witness it ourselves or talk to the people who actually did it, or else we can be manipulated to no end.
So, here we go. I can get into an even more lengthy explanation of how we did it but that isn’t what matters here.
#1 – SuperDelegates no longer exist.
SuperDelegate was an INFORMAL term used to describe an “unpledged delegate.” They were called a SuperDelegate because they BOTH were unpledged on the first ballot and automatically were going to the convention.
We removed their first ballot access, the only way they get to vote on the first ballot is when they cannot change the outcome of the race and vote in acclimation with the rest of the party.
They have become “automatic delegates” because the way the convention rules are set up we need party leadership to make decisions about how the convention will be organized before pledged delegates are chosen.
This is what Donna Brazille meant when she said “setting the menu.”
#2 – The rule was passed inside of the Convention rules.
This means that the rule cannot be changed unless they reopen the rules for the convention, this could only be done last summer and when the convention opens.
Yes, I am aware of a plan to attempt to reopen the rules at the convention and let them try to vote on the first round.
I cannot be clear enough that this can be out organized.
For starters, at the end of the primary, the Party Secretary will determine if there is a winner. If Bernie is ahead enough at this point then there will be no changing the rules that will alter the outcome.
#3 – The winner is whoever reaches 50%+1 of pledged delegates by the end of the primary.
I cannot explain enough what a huge win this was for us. Last time the first ballot win included SuperDelegates, this allowed them to be added to the total to win during the convention and is why the media was able to stack them early.
Having clear math like this empowers the grassroots and it hasn’t been like this since the creation of unpledged delegates.
Dennis Freeland made a chart explaining the process of how the DNC votes with corresponding cited rules.
#4 – The argument I made to push the reform had nothing to do with Bernie.
In 2016, Democrats lost to Trump because of the SuperDelegates. Democrats don’t show up to vote when they think something is a sure deal.
But the Primary exists to build the base.
A healthy and wide primary is required because each candidate is out raising money and, more importantly, raising voters. These voters go on to vote in the general election.
When party leadership decides the vote before a single ballot is cast this shrinks our electorate making it easier for Republicans to win.
We need an engaged electorate to win in November.
That’s what I lobbied and used in my live streams. This very argument was brought up at the rules and bylaws meeting.
#5 – There is a 15% requirement to get any delegates.
In the National Delegate math itself, there is a requirement you have 15% of the popular vote in a state to get any delegates there. So, watering down the primary with lots of candidates and splitting up support will not lead to a brokered convention.
It will lead to most candidates not getting any delegates and if you look at the polling very few are above 15%.
#6 – Most candidates will leave the race after Iowa and NH.
When you don’t get any delegates in the first two races then it is pretty much over for your fundraising making it extremely challenging to keep moving without going back on many of your campaign promises.
#7 – Bernie received 47% of pledged delegates last time.
This really matters…. because the DNC tried to hide this by cluttering the numbers with Superdelegates so it seemed like a blowout. Many on the other side actually believe it was a blowout and this will be their downfall.
The truth is that last time no one hit the total to win because the math was so messed up, we fixed this with the change to a 50%+1 of eligible delegates and only pledged delegates are eligible on the first ballot.
This means that we just need to hold on to 47% and we can take this. But the truth is our movement has grown considerably. I have been all over the country and many people never stopped working to great effect.
#8 – They tried to break the rule by putting the “eligible delegates” language in a footnote.
We stopped them and had it folded back into the rule. If this had stayed this way they could have easily removed the rule even in a printing error or at the convention very easily by striking it entirely. This is why I demanded the language be folded back into the main rule, and it was.
#9 – That article being passed around is total BS.
First off, nowhere in it does it quote any actual DNC member or party bosses who agree with the headline. The one they do quote says they would rather have it wrapped on the first ballot.
#10 – David Brock and his cohorts are not part of the DNC.
All of these people worked for Hillary Clinton, they want to be paid by the DNC because they are contractors. If Bernie wins that they don’t get that anymore and never will again.
#11 – If Bernie wins he gets to rebuild the DNC and all its committees.
Well, whoever he chooses for DNC Chair will get to. Though it is not explicitly in the rules, if the current elected DNC members want to get any help from the President than they had better play ball and give him what he wants.
#12 – Even if Bernie does not reach 50%+1 of pledged delegates it does not mean that he has lost.
There are a fixed amount of Automatic delegates, which now include Alexandria Ocasio Cortez and Rashida Tlaib plus many more.
I am not saying I know how they would vote but I am saying that it is far less lopsided than it was in 2016.
All we have to do is get close and there are not enough Automatic Delegates to push anyone over Bernie.
#13 – Fear of SuperDelegates is why Bernie lost in 2016.
The greatest problem we had in 2015 and 16 was that so many people thought that Hillary was the inevitable leader because of her Superdelegate tally.
This kept many many many people from organizing at a critical time. With only a few months to do it, they used this fear-based tactic to keep people out of the primary.
We can talk about voter and ballot manipulation all day, WHICH DID HAPPEN, but this not only caused Bernie’s loss in the Primary, but it also cost Hillary the General Election. This is the main reason that the Third-way members were open to making a change.
The contractors who will lose their high dollar contracts are trying to reestablish that fear to keep their bank accounts flush.
#14 – This article is the beginning of the Anti-Bernie push.
It could not be more painfully obvious that they are trying to use your fear and the lack of available information on this subject to manipulate you.
Selina and I are the only reputable sources and she already sold us out once for her own gain.
They are trying to strike the fear into the organizers who they know can take away everything they have built, as you should.
#15 – The only way for us to lose is for us to stop ourselves.
Time is our greatest enemy and when you have more of it folks tend to waste it.
Every time we debate this nonsense we lose ground.
Every time we listen to these fearmongers we lose ground.
Every time we block or alienate each other we lose ground.
#16 – Our strength is in our numbers.
This seems fairly self-explanatory but to be clear, every time we break up our groups because someone else wants to fight over who is in charge, we lose strength.
We have to work together and coordinate our actions.
#17 – The Sanders campaign does not have all the answers.
Putting millions of people to organize through just a small handful of people is known as a “bottleneck.” You are going to have to plan with each other to take initiative and most likely the campaign will follow your lead if it works.
#18 – If I was a DNC spy or plant I wouldn’t be making any of these points.
My goal is, and has always been, to empower those who feel powerless … to make your voice be heard.
And there is no greater way to do that than making Bernie Sanders the 46th President of the United States and taking down corrupt establishment contractors at the same time.
The only folks who lose here are the David Brocks of the world and that is why they will fight so hard.
Do not fall for their tricks and games.