Politics & Policy

Our Democratic Friends Seem to Be Having a Bit of Trouble with This ‘Democracy’ Thing

Clinton and Sanders at the Democratic debate in Durham, N.H. (Joe Raedle/Getty)

I’m not a Democrat — never have been, don’t plan to be — so maybe it’s none of my business, but it seems like our friends across the aisle have a bit of a problem.

Item from U.S. News & World Report: “Hillary Clinton Wins Six Iowa Precincts on a Coin Flip

Item from The Hill: “Errors Found in Iowa Democratic Caucus Results

Item from the Des Moines Register: “Iowans Claim Instances when Sanders Was Shorted Delegates

Item from Slate: “The Iowa Democratic Party Is Ignoring Legitimate Calls for an Audit of Its Screwed-Up Caucus

Item from New York magazine: “Sanders Wins Big in New Hampshire! Now He’s only 352 delegates behind Clinton!

Item from NPR: “How Hillary Clinton Might Actually Win in N.H., Even Though She Lost Big

Now, I’m sure that, er, there’s a perfectly reasonable explanation for all this. I’m sure that Debbie Wasserman-Shultz or some other Democratic bigwig could come along and set me straight on how none of this is even a little bit fishy.

Hey! Here’s former Pennsylvania governor and former chairman of the Democratic National Committee Ed Rendell right now!

Questioned by MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell on the fairness of Hillary’s big delegate lead over Sanders — when Bernie has won one (or maybe two) of the first two primaries, Rendell responded:

“I think Hillary’s going to do very well with super-delegates. That means Bernie would have to win a significant majority of the elected delegates. Now you may say, ‘That’s unfair. If he wins a majority of the elected delegates he should be the nominee.’ Well as you’ll recall, Andrea, who won the majority of the elected delegates in 2008?”

RELATED: Iowa’s Transparently Dishonest Democratic Caucus

“Barack Obama,” Mitchell answered.

“No. He won the elected delegates but who won the majority of votes? She had the popular votes, he had the delegates,” Rendell continued. “So let’s say Bernie wins the popular votes, people are going to say, ‘Well, why doesn’t he get the nomination?’ Well, Hillary won the popular vote in 2008 and didn’t.”

But Sanders “crushed her by 22 points and yet [they] ended up with 15 delegates apiece. How fair is that system?” Mitchell pressed.

“It’s the same system that nominated Barack Obama,” Rendell responded.

Oh . . . Well in that case, I guess everything checks out.

#share#But let me get this straight: Rendell’s position is that the Democrats’ system is working great because the 2016 popular-vote leader might not be the 2016 delegate leader, just like in 2008 — (which worked out perfectly because it gave us President Barack Obama) — but anyway it doesn’t matter because this time Hillary is going to win regardless of what happens?

Well I feel much better — I think — but leave it to Senator Harry Reid to double down on the Democratic-party line that everything is squeaky clean, nothing to see here.

“Here you’ve got Hillary Clinton getting clobbered in New Hampshire, 22-point landslide by Bernie Sanders,” Mitchell pointed out to the Senate minority leader. “And yet, they divided the delegates 15–15 because she had so many super-delegates, so many members of Congress and senators and the governor, of course.”

“Is that a fair process?” she asked.

“Well, the process was totally unfair before — eight years ago,” Reid opined. “Eight years ago, I looked at this, and I thought, how in the world could we have the future of this country be dependent on Iowa, which is 93 percent white, and we have New Hampshire which is 97 percent white, no diversity, no diversity in Iowa. And have the final decision made as to who is going to be the president of the United States based on those two states, it was wrong. We now have Nevada and South Carolina before we get into the rest of the country as to who’s chosen where.”

RELATED: How New Hampshire’s Democratic Establishment Chose Clinton over Its Constituents 

“This is better, so much better than it was before. So, think what it would be if this campaign didn’t go to Nevada and South Carolina,” Reid continued. “It was just determined by what happened in Iowa: [Clinton] won, and you just indicated that even though [Sanders] won the election by a big margin in New Hampshire, the delegates came out even. It was not a good system. It’s getting better.”

Got that, Democrats? This system is better, so much better than it used to be eight years ago . . . so no complaining. Please, send your heartfelt thanks to Senator Reid.

#related#Look, as I said before, maybe this is none of my business, but it seems to me that the Democratic party has exited the small-“d”-democracy market. This is basic, nuts-and-bolts stuff that you’re failing at. One need not be a constitutional scholar — it’d sure be nice to have one of those leading the party (oh, wait) — to understand that Democrats are embarrassing themselves with all this banana-republic style electioneering.

Since you guys seem to be set on nominating a self-described socialist for president anyway, why not go the distance and change your name to “American Socialist Workers party” or something?

It’d be much more accurate. (Not that you guys seem to be all that interested in anything so stodgy as “accuracy.”)


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