How much longer can this Democratic
presidential nomination contest last?
Monday, May 26, 2008
by Richard E. Berg-Andersson
drip... drip... drip... drip...
it is but the sound of more and more Democratic "superdelegates" going to Senator Obama than to Senator Clinton.
Not yet a deluge, to be sure, but a continuing steady trickle nonetheless.
Hillary Clinton's presidential nomination hopes yet remain alive (albethey on "life support"), if only because the pattern established since that 6-week hiatus after 11 March's Mississippi Primary has simply been each contender doing what he or she was expected to have done prior to each new Presidential Primary:
Mrs. Clinton was "supposed" to win Pennsylvania, while Mr. Obama was "supposed" to win North Carolina: likewise, West Virginia and Kentucky went big for Senator Clinton, as predicted well in advance, while Senator Obama did what he had to do (though nothing more, yet nothing less) in Oregon.
The only "spanner in the works" of this whole later Primary "season" since back on 22 April was Barack Obama's making Hillary Clinton's victory in Indiana noticeably closer than it otherwise was expected to be ahead of time...
Ay! There's the rub: the very "rub" that really began this trickle of more and more Obama "superdelegates" (along with an endorsement from erstwhile presidential contender former Senator John Edwards).
Senator Clinton's presidential aspirations now well hinge on this Saturday's meeting of the Democratic National Committee's Rules and Bylaws Committee which will be the first significant step in (well... maybe [;-)]) resolving the issue of how, or even whether, to seat delegations from both Florida and Michigan at the Party's National Convention in Denver three months hence and, even when it comes to this 31 May confab (and I will have more to say about this in a Commentary later this week, before said meeting), Senator Clinton's hopes are fading:
per the "alternative" "soft" count on this website (as of this very typing), Obama leads Clinton 2055 to 1972 (keep in mind that this "alternative" count includes Florida and Michigan "as is").
Yes, assuming Senator Clinton (as I have long opined in many of my Commentaries this year, going all the way back to January) gains a majority of the 55 Uncommitted delegates out of Michigan (let's, if only for sake of this argument, say that Mrs. Clinton ends up holding a total of 101 [her 73 + 28 of the Uncommitted] out of the 128 Michigan "as is" pledged delegates), she will still be behind him. Add in the estimated minimum 36 pledged delegates yet to be most likely accrued by Obama (at least 20 from Puerto Rico [even should Hillary Clinton win the island Commonwealth's Primary on 1 June by a significant margin] plus 16 [a bare majority of the 31] out of Montana and South Dakota, the final Presidential Primaries on 3 June) and Mr. Obama would be 91 delegates closer to the "non-sanctioned" "magic number" of 2210 than Mrs. Clinton would be, even with Florida and Michigan eventually seated with no changes other than those herein noted.
In the end, as I've written previously, nothing substantive is going to come out of this coming Saturday's meeting if it might only mean that Barack Obama possibly could, thereby, punt his own potential nomination!
But such will be the stuff of my next Commentary.
In the mean time, as we wait while pondering just how things might yet play out, let's all watch just how much "buyer's remorse" evidences itself in Idaho's Advisory "beauty contest" of a Presidential Primary on the Democratic side come Tuesday 27 May, shall we?
At the same time: drip... drip... drip...
the trickle continues.