May 22nd, 2008
03:35 PM ET
6 years ago

Blitzer: Could Democrats scrap the current delegate system?

Blitzer: Democrats are already starting to look past 2008.
Blitzer: Democrats are already starting to look past 2008.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - The Democratic presidential nominating process is still being played out. It certainly looks like Barack Obama is very close to wrapping it up, but Hillary Clinton is not yet giving up.

There are still three more contests left, on June 1 in Puerto Rico, and on June 3 in Montana and South Dakota. And now, Senator Clinton and her advisers are even leaving open the possibility that this process could drag on to the Democratic convention in Denver at the end of August, especially if there is no change in the party’s refusal to seat the full Michigan and Florida delegations.

Back in early January, just before the first caucuses in Iowa, few would have thought that this process could continue into June. Many pundits actually predicted the Republican nominating process could drag on. But the widely-held assumption then was that the Democrats would wrap it up quickly, probably with Hillary Clinton winning the nomination. All of this goes to show that making political predictions can be a risky business.

Now, Democratic insiders are already starting to look beyond this year. Some are questioning the entire nominating process.

For example, should the party do away with its superdelegates. “I never supported superdelegates to begin with – 25 years ago,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, herself a superdelegate, said today. “I ran for the Chair of the National Committee opposed to superdelegates. You can imagine what a winning platform that was.”

She wants the Democratic Party to reconsider its rules. “There should be some representation of that leadership of the party and the congressional, gubernatorial and other manifestations of the party, but I think 800 is far too many.”

Is it too early for the Democrats to rethink their rules for 2012 based on what has happened this year?


Filed under: Wolf Blitzer
soundoff (267 Responses)
  1. joseph

    Florida and Michigan broke the rules for both the Republican and Democratic parties. The Republicans imposed a partial penalty and agreed to recognize one-half of the delegation from both states. This solves two problems. First, it lets all the states know that there will be penalties and consequences for violating the rules. Second, it does not disenfranchise the votes. The longer the Democrats whine about this thing without reaching a solution, the more the Republicans are starting to sound like the more reasonable party for reaching pragmatic solutions to problems. Dios Mios! I can't believe I just said that.

    May 22, 2008 06:19 pm at 6:19 pm |
  2. Paul

    we will get 4 more years of Republican administration if Obama( the wonderboy) gets the nomination

    Hillary 08, our only hope for a better future in America

    Have you realized the latest gas prices.? She has a plan and will hold accountable to those who exploit millions of Americans in the pump.

    May 22, 2008 06:23 pm at 6:23 pm |
  3. marymary4868

    I think they should have about 5 debates at the begining of the primary, then ALL the states should vote at the same time, scrub the rest of the crap, NO more delegates, let the people decide, not just the chosen few. Look at the MILLIONS of dollars spent on this B.S. , , by the time the next ecection comes around people may be wondering where their next meal is going to come from, If things don't make a huge turn around were screwed.!!!!

    May 22, 2008 06:23 pm at 6:23 pm |
  4. Femi, CO

    The only solution to the current problem that will cool the situation- DECLARE HILLARY CLINTON THE WINNER EVEN WITH ALL OPEN EVIDENCE OF HER LOSS OUT, PERIOD! Until then nothing will satisfy her, greedy woman.

    Concerned Democrat

    May 22, 2008 06:23 pm at 6:23 pm |
  5. noemi in los angeles

    "COUNT EVERY SINGLE VOTE":

    We have to remember that some people DIDN'T vote, because they knew that their votes wouldn't count.

    In Florida, home owners turned out in droves due to the property tax issue on the ballot. The Clinton brand is familiar and therefore, got more votes. What about the renters who didn't bother voting? Why should they be disenfranchised?

    May 22, 2008 06:23 pm at 6:23 pm |
  6. tim

    In this day and age we should do away with the party system all together. The system misaligns democracy and masks it as the 'will' of the people. Then when a few people break 'the rules' we throw off millions of voters. What the DNC has done with Florida and Michigan borders on traitorous and I, personally, can't believe that we the people stand for it.

    May 22, 2008 06:23 pm at 6:23 pm |
  7. Bridget

    I think the process needs changing especially the caucus method. I think Oregon with the mail in has an interesting way of voting. Every state needs to have part in the process. I hate when Iowa and New Hampshire vote and then it is all over. Voters feel left out. Even though this year the nomination has gone all the way, I think it is exciting. I do feel that Hillary is the most experienced and most qualified. Florida and Michigan votes should be counted. Many of us will feel much like the voters of Florida felt in 2000, when their votes were not counted, "cheated again."

    May 22, 2008 06:24 pm at 6:24 pm |
  8. Alina

    If the DNC had run the Democratic primaries (and caucuses,...more on these below) just like we run the national election, WINNER TAKE ALL, and that is also the way the GOP runs the Republican primaries: HILLARY WOULD BE AHEAD 1732 TO OBAMA 1376 PLEDGED DELEGATES. The present DNC rules are ridiculous: in Texas, primaries elect 1 pledged delegate per 22,000 voters while caucuses (which can be manipulated by candidate thugs) receive 1 delegate per 640 caucusers. Caucuses should be prohibited: they exclude anyone that has to work, has small children, medically frail, etc. Then MN gets 72 delegates for 212251 voters, while WV gets only 28 delegates for 248104 voters. This system is really sick, and thus I will stick with Clinton no matter what because she is the better candidate and with a well designed system would have won.

    May 22, 2008 06:24 pm at 6:24 pm |
  9. Don U.

    Having been a lifelong democrat – I am sad to say that it's time to scrap the entire two party system. This whole electoral process is a joke. The Democratic party is forever broken.

    May 22, 2008 06:24 pm at 6:24 pm |
  10. Typical White Person

    They should only have primaries also, where people can vote in private and feel comfortable.

    May 22, 2008 06:24 pm at 6:24 pm |
  11. Brian

    I hope so – the far left has taken over the party through Cacuses and we're on the verge of putting up a candidate who can't win ANY of the states (OH, FL, PA, MI) Dems MUST win to take back the White House. I'm ready to go to the Convention and make sure Hillary gets our nomination. I'll vote Obama in a general but I don't think enough people in key states will. He's spent ooodles of money selling himself. They know what he's selling and they're not buying it. Sorry, but electibility is the only think I care about because John McSame is not an option.

    May 22, 2008 06:25 pm at 6:25 pm |
  12. Attorney in Florida

    ABSOLUTELY!!!

    1. If the DNC had the RNC's rules, Hillary would already be the nominee and we would WIN in November. Now, because "everyone gets a trophy", we'll have an Obama nomination and lose to McCain.

    2. Superdelegates- They obviously don't want to do the job they were given. They were created as a FIREWALL.....to protect the Democrats from themselves. They are NOT suppose to go w/ the will of the voters, but instead, suppose to use their INDEPENDENT JUDGMENT on who is the stronger nominee to take on the GOP. These bunch of pansies are too afraid of a backlash and because of their cowardly actions, we will lose in November....AGAIN!!!!

    May 22, 2008 06:27 pm at 6:27 pm |
  13. German Hernandez

    who cares.. Go ahead change the rules. who cares its only political rule... Go Hillary... OBAMA 08 !!! HOW KNOWS

    May 22, 2008 06:29 pm at 6:29 pm |
  14. Souther Star, TN

    Right on ... tony, Mount Vernon, NY ... the process is too long and it desperately needs simplifying. They should also get rid of the superdelegates. After all, it were those super delegates in MI and FL that got the Dems in this mess in the first place. Let the people speak for once without any political sway. The electoral college is bad enough.

    May 22, 2008 06:30 pm at 6:30 pm |
  15. Phong Nguyen

    The DNC and the Democratic Party has a lot to learn from the smart RNC and the Republican Party. From 1963, the Republican Party has more presidential elections than the Democratic Party (7 to 4)!!! Go figure!!! The Democratic Party has been known to be more divided! Their rules are stupidly convoluted!

    May 22, 2008 06:30 pm at 6:30 pm |
  16. Lin Lo

    There is nothing wrong with the process. The Clinton camp wants you to think there is because the system is currently not favoring her. Meanwhile, while she "fights" so hard for Michigan and Florida, she is DISENFRANCHISING the people in caucus states, saying their votes DON'T count. How can anyone believe anything coming out of her mouth? Her supporters post the rudest, meanest, most uninformed things I have ever read and have fallen into her trap of lies and deceit.

    May 22, 2008 06:30 pm at 6:30 pm |
  17. Nazih Youssef

    First week of June should be the deadline, pleas stop wasting people time and energy. THe DEMOCRATIC PART Y LEADERSHIP should step in and enforce the RULES.
    Thanks

    May 22, 2008 06:31 pm at 6:31 pm |
  18. Ardnuas

    Wolf, give it up.... Hillary is NOT going to win.... you keep trying to get her elected.... why didn't you want to change the SYSTEM when she was winning, why didn't you want to count FL and MI when she was winning?

    May 22, 2008 06:32 pm at 6:32 pm |
  19. The Lady

    There a total of 86 delegates left. Obama needs 61 and Hillary needs 247, it does not matter what FL and MI do right now the show is over. The only fair thing they can do with FL and MI is split them down the middle and we will still be where we are right now. I do admire a fighter but I don't admire someone who fights for nothing.

    May 22, 2008 06:34 pm at 6:34 pm |
  20. USMC Vet

    If someone told me that this election is not about "race" and gender, then they are in a different world. Other then religion, race is the other issue that seperates this country. No one should feel sorry for Hillary....she needs to move on. I've seen two terms of the Clintons in office and I've had enough.

    May 22, 2008 06:34 pm at 6:34 pm |
  21. former NM resident

    The democratic primary process is a joke and about as undemocratic as an election can get. Yes, it should be revamped. All primaries should be held on the same day and the popular vote should prevail. Do away with the superdelegates which are an insult to American voters.

    May 22, 2008 06:34 pm at 6:34 pm |
  22. Ralph

    One can only hope their stupidity is curable.

    May 22, 2008 06:35 pm at 6:35 pm |
  23. Carl from MI

    Yes... scrap the super-delegate portion of it. Cry-baby Clinton knows that Florida and Michigan violated the rules... and she'd be crying up a storm if they both went majority to Obama.

    If you break the rules, you get punished. Why Clinton is not in support of this ancient principle should tell you boatloads about how she'll act as President. We ALREADY have a president that lives by that principle... are you prepared to put her in there in his place? Think about it...

    May 22, 2008 06:35 pm at 6:35 pm |
  24. TOM PA

    Look the Clintons are MAD they are losing. GET OVER IT

    May 22, 2008 06:37 pm at 6:37 pm |
  25. Carl from MI

    Yes... scrap the super-delegate portion of it. Cry-baby Clinton knows that Florida and Michigan violated the rules... and she'd be crying up a storm if they both went majority to Obama.

    If you break the rules, you get punished. Why Clinton is not in support of this ancient principle should tell you boatloads about how she'll act as President. We ALREADY have a president that doesn't live by that principle... are you prepared to put her in there in his place? Think about it...

    May 22, 2008 06:37 pm at 6:37 pm |
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