April 16th, 2008
09:35 AM ET
6 years ago

McGovern, Dukakis support superdelegate convention

(CNN) - Two of the Democratic Party’s former presidential nominees have endorsed the idea of a superdelegate convention in June to end the bitter nominating fight.

Mike Dukakis, the 1988 nominee, and George McGovern, who topped the ticket in 1972, told the Boston Globe they believe superdelegates should state their choice publicly soon after the primary season ends. The idea was first proposed by Tennessee Gov. Phil Bredesen.

Neither Hillary Clinton nor Barack Obama can reach the required 2,025 delegates without the support of the party's superdelegates.

"We don't want an acrimonious battle all the way to the convention and maybe out onto the convention floor," said McGovern, who has endorsed Clinton. "We had that in 1972, when I was nominated, and it was very damaging."

He added that if he had had more time to consider his choice of a running mate, he might have avoided difficulties with his first selection, Sen. Thomas Eagleton, that further damaged his bid.


Filed under: superdelegates
soundoff (222 Responses)
  1. Now for Obama

    Thousands of us in Dallas want our votes back from Hillary. Will never vote for Hillary again! OBAMA OR NO ONE!

    April 16, 2008 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  2. Now for Obama

    Thousands of us in Dallas want our votes back from Hillary. Will never vote for Hillary again! OBAMA OR NO ONE!

    April 16, 2008 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  3. Sharon Minnesota

    Sounds good if all votes are in, including Mich. & Florida. Re-vote is necessary to be completely fair.

    By June all the dirt will be out for the candidates and then we can measure up the depth of the damage for each one. Then the delegates can vote accordingly.

    I'm betting on Hillary come out the cleanest. Mr Obama will loose the nomination.

    April 16, 2008 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  4. honkey white guy from cali

    Hello is everyone still paying attention these two need to read this race is not close no matter how many time Clinton and her surrogates say so He has won more states delegate and popular vote if you include the state of MI and FL and if HRC's numbers keep going down the way they are he very well could end up with the needed delegates let the people vote and see what happens. Everyone should note they both said that after all the voting the SD should make there case known they are not telling anyone to say now or push her out but to wait and see once all the votes are counted and she will still be behind!!!!!!

    Go Obama 08 Yes We Can

    April 16, 2008 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  5. Reality That's Too Real

    Here lies the problem with FL and MI…

    First, you cannot accept the votes as they were cast. Since the states were told ahead of time that their votes wouldn't be counted, it definitely had an effect on the outcome in those states. If you let FL and MI have a re-vote, then you may as well let all of the states have a re-vote. The reason why is that the position (popularity, support, etc.) of the candidates is constantly changing, so the outcome of a vote in one state may be very different if the same vote is taken several months later. That is, the people in both FL and MI know much more about the candidates now, so they may vote differently then they would have a few months ago. So if you let FL and MI vote again based on today's information, you may as well let all states have another shot at it. In short, there are problems with counting the votes as they were cast, as well as with having a re-vote. This also shows one of the faults of the system, since the early states don't know as much about the candidates. Look how much has come out since the votes were cast in FL and MI. Also, what about people who voted for candidates early on who dropped out of the contest? The decision of not letting the FL and MI votes count has created one huge problem for which there is no clear and equitable solution.

    April 16, 2008 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  6. Newman

    Why wait? Stop being undecided and just cast your votes now, for Obama! I am tired of this Mickey Mouse foolishness from the superdelegates. Vote now I say, off with her head!

    April 16, 2008 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  7. Mike

    If you designate electoral college values to the Dem. primary winners Clinton leads Obama 219-202. Count MI and FL she leads 263-202. PA has 21 at stake. Who is winning?

    April 16, 2008 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  8. LifeLongDemocrat

    Who knows better than those two that they were the wrong nominees for the party. Let's select HIllary and Obama can be the VP and can then be the nominee for president after that term.

    Go Hillary!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

    April 16, 2008 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  9. Radio

    What bothers me about this conversation is that everyone seems intent, not on promoting a candidate, but bashing the other one. Thats not even the subject of this conversation.

    P.S. I'm an Obama supporter, but please show Sen. Clinton some respect by not calling her Hillary. She is a very able and respected Politician and deserves to be called by her professional title.

    Ok, a superdelegate convention is a patently bad idea, but the sad fact is, we don't have a choice. At the rate this race is going, neither candidate will be able to acheive the required number of delegates in time for the convention, but Sen. Clinton has already vowed not to exit the race until a winner is chosen; she can't afford to be seen as soft on anything. Obama is in the lead and will remain there until the convention if prior primaries are anything to go by. He won't be dropping out either.

    The DNC cannot seat Florida and Michigan. Both states violated party rules and moved their primaries up without authorization. If they are not SEVERELY penelized, other states will have precedent to do the same thing, and the DNC will never regain control of it's election cycle.

    On the other hand, the decision to move the dates of the primaries were decided by government officials, not by the people of the affected states, and many of those disenfranchised people wish to have their vote count. Katherine Harris strikes again, people.

    While those state clearly cannot be seated, the people of those states will not allow a governor to be elected without stated promise of non-interference in election dates if they are removed from this, the most important primary season of our lifetimes.

    April 16, 2008 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  10. Paula in WI

    If you do a google search you will find another misspeak by Hillary.She and Bill posed for several pics with Rezco.Will she ever tell the truth?
    No she's no person I want in the White House.

    April 16, 2008 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  11. D Frank

    A super delegate primary is a great idea with one important point. If the winner of this Primary reaches a majority of 60% +, then the candidate takes all of the delegates.

    April 16, 2008 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  12. mike

    Steve said it best. Anyone who is too upset at Hillary's demise to vote for Barack is helping no one by going to the other party. In fact, the only person that should get the blame is the candidate herself for running a slipshod campaign. Take a close look at the way Hillary ran her campaign compared to Obama. She was completely overconfident and didn't take his ability seriously. That arrogance cost her dearly. Vote Democrat at all cost or then don't complain when nothing changes under continued Republican rule.

    April 16, 2008 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  13. eleanor owen

    The super delegates have to decide anyway. It would be better they
    do it sooner than later. I think most people are tired of the process,
    I think all except Hilary, and I for one am certainly tired of Hilary.

    April 16, 2008 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  14. Ilona Proud Canadian

    Way to go Sen. Obama!!!

    Thanks to the..........Two NC Super delegates...... for endorsing
    Sen. Obama today!!!!!!!!

    I think we are beginning to see some movement folks!!!

    April 16, 2008 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  15. LaDonna Smith

    Quit saying that Hillary can't win. She can!!! She is the smartest candidate for president.

    April 16, 2008 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  16. Caroline

    It's very refreshing and like a lot of people I enjoy your "All American"
    voters comments!

    Well if WE the people, can not vote for neither Obama or Clinton and
    make our minds what we want and need for a U.S.A. president,

    Albert Gore would do!

    someone said:WE WILL NOT COME TOGETHER JUST FOR PARTY
    LOYALTY AND UNITY IN NOV. WE HAVE A RIGHT AND AN OBLIGATION TO SUPPORT THE BEST CANDIDATE!
    ....the best candidate???......

    April 16, 2008 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  17. Mirta

    That is silly, Just go to the convention. The truth is, they are afraid of a super delegate surge for Hillary and how to handle to the rioting in the streets that will follow.

    BTW, I will never vote for Obama. Neither will all of the extended members of my family. We discussed at at Easter and realized that meant 25 votes right there...People are getting tired of having Obama pushed down their throats. Everyone is talking about it...

    McCain is fine with me – more middle of the road – and not BHO!

    April 16, 2008 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  18. Debbie

    One of the reasons the superdelegates want to end this childish bickering is because some dems aren't mature enough to vote for either dem in the general election. They've lost the whole point of having debates, where the issues should matter and have turned this into a personality contest. You wouldn't be hurting Obama if you vote for McCain if Hillary loses or vice versa. You will be hurting yourself, your future, your children's future and the future of this country. The republicans want to stay at war so that they can be right about going to Iraq at the expense of more soldiers' lives, and believe me McCain comes from Vietnam era where there was a draft, spend all of our money in foreign countries, send all of our jobs to foreign countries, not secure the borders so that more jobs and our children's education is affected. These are the real issues. Not whether you like Obama or Hillary.

    April 16, 2008 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  19. Pappa

    The superdelegate convention is a great idea! All the superdelegates should look at the hard numbers of the popular vote. This is a democracy for heavens sake! We the people, of the Democratic party of the USA, although we have two worthy canidates, we can only choose one. In this respects, the only one that can win over the Republican party.
    It is amazing how contradicting Hilary and McCain have been through out their entire campaign. American are tired of been lied to for unjust reasons. The only canidate that has not changed because they are running for office,is Obama. If you remember last year, suragates from the Clinton and McCain campaign accused Obama of being a Muslim. Then when his faith was recognized, his Pastor was attacked. When questioned about Rev. Wright, Obama handled this with faith, respect and dignity. When McCain and Clinton was asked about their faith, the stepped away from it. Each time they are faced with the tough questions, we are delt a fat hand of politics. If our country does not begin the healing and unity we need for this country now, we will all continue to fight among ourselkves like bastard children. The only one that can put us on track is not Barack Obama, but the American people with leadership of Barack Obama!

    April 16, 2008 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  20. Nesa

    Senator Obama will win this nomination. He has earned it. Senator Clinton was my first choice; She is a clever and shrewd politician and I always reflect back on the 'good days of her husband's presidency. However, after 15 months of seeing her flip flop on issues, blatantly lying to the American people and then making a mockery of it on a comedy show, attacking Obama as if he was the Republican nominee, condesending to Al Gore and John Kerry, intent on destroying the Democratic party and not knowing when to quit, had led me to change my vote for her. Senator Obama has run an organized campaign. He has messed up a few times, however, he has weathered the storms of being called a Muslin, unpatriotic, elitist, inexperienced, the Jeremy Wright controversy, too liberal and not ready to be Commander and Chief. Most of America is in love with this guy!!!

    April 16, 2008 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  21. JK

    Too bad they both support Clinton

    April 16, 2008 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  22. Axel

    Superdelegates are politicians and in politics better to have fishing skills than be a gambler.Unfortunately for the time being, it doesnt play good for Democrats, that's why it'd be wiser to clinch the deal now !!!!! This campaign is getting dirty min after min mostly when we have Sen Clinton doing whatever she can to keep hooked on a possible chance of being picked as Democrats's challenger for the presidential 2009 elections.Sometimes she shed crocodile tears,then after says she's honor to be ther with Sen Obama and few hours later, she's shouting "shame on you" like a "fishwife".
    She's describing her Serbian visit as dagerous trip where snippers are spotting any move...as she just forgot that achives do exist..
    Well it just cannot come like this Sen Clinton, a decade in the white house was largely enough and Americans shouldnt let an other dynastie comes in.

    April 17, 2008 07:36 am at 7:36 am |
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