Bernie Sanders supporters, leftover from the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination battle, have organized an uprising against the Democratic National Committee and plan to introduce "superdelegate reforms" at the DNC's convention next month in Chicago — but, it seems, the superdelegates have no intention of disappearing without a fight.
Convinced that the superdelegates cost Sanders the nomination (and, apparently, that Sanders would have won against Donald Trump), progressive activists have outlined a series of "reforms" that would eliminate superdelegate influence from the first round of voting on the party's presidential nomination. If no candidate gets a clear majority in the first round a voting, then superdelegates would have a say in who the DNC nominates for the ticket.
The plan shakes up an ages-old Democratic Party system that sees party leaders, major donors, and elected officials wield more power in the party's nominating system than everyday delegates from primary states, and the Sanders supporters hope it prevents someone like Hillary Clinton from running away with a nomination that isn't hers (particularly since she's reportedly trying to organize a repeat showdown with Trump in 2020).
The problem is, though, superdelegates aren't that interested in giving up power, and they plan on fighting progressives — on the floor of the convention, if need be.
Politico reports that some of the party's top influencers will refuse to rubber stamp Sanders' proposal, and it could lead to a fight.
“If we don’t have a vote, then what good are we?" one superdelegate told the D.C. newsmagazine. “The more DNC members realize that this so-called reform is to throw them off the floor … I think there will be a lot of complaints in Chicago.”
One superdelegate even warned that next month's DNC meeting could look less like a "blue wave" and more like a Civil War: "Unfortunately, while the Republicans are winning elections and taking over the Supreme Court, we’ll be in Chicago looking like 1968.”
For those keeping score, the 1968 Democratic National Convention in Chicago was marked by violent protests, as anti-war activists demanded the DNC nominate a candidate less inclined to "rubber stamp" the ongoing, pointless war in Vietnam. While it seems unlikely Sanders' millennial, socialist followers will be busting heads and tossing smoke bombs between bites of avocado toast, the CSPAN coverage won't be very pretty.
“I also believe the timing is wretched,” a superdelegate told Politico. “We’re in the midst of the battle of our lives to win back the majority of our House, and to schedule this vote with this recommendation that came out of nowhere … is to me just wretched timing and political malpractice.”
As November draws closer, it seems the GOP may have less and less to fear.