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Whose delegates are they?

June 23, 2016

You can wind up on any side of the newest Dump Trump movement you want to, but at the end you have to wonder why we bother with all of those expensive primary contests.

It has been many years since there has been such a blatant collective FU directed at the American public by its “leaders.”

Maybe it’s a result of the current president’s obvious disdain for the unwashed masses. Maybe it’s the result of decades of the “special” generation always getting their way if they threw a big enough temper tantrum.  Maybe it’s just a natural outgrowth of the reproductive efficiency of the flower child generation, many of whom were reliving their glory days on the floor of the House of Representatives Wednesday.

Who knows?

Whatever it is, it sure doesn’t make a big case for their support for democracy,  where the majority is supposed to rule.

It isn’t just Republicans either. Take away all of the delegates on the Democratic side, and ol’ Bernie made a pretty good showing.  If the super delegates hadn’t been an ever-present wet blanket, he might actually be the Democratic nominee.

Whatever else Trump did, he wound up with over 1500 pledged delegates. By the current rules, they HAVE to vote for him on the first round at the GOP convention.

So what happens?  His detractors are telling those delegates, and the rest of us, that what the folks back home wanted is just simply irrelevant.

It’s natural to be disappointed when you lose at something you wanted to win. That’s forgivable.

What isn’t so easily forgiven is to throw out the score and declare the victory non-existent.

By that yardstick,  the Golden State Warriors can be declared the NBA champions, at least by their fans.

It’s unlikely that this bunch of ineffective whiners will get their way and actually stop Trump. They had 16 chances to beat him on the up-and-up and couldn’t get the job done.

What they have done is to leave the rest of us wondering whether they will spend the next four years being as obstructionist as they are now, should he win the White House.

If so, then it might just be practical to split the GOP into the hardline conservatives and the people that just want to see the country governed, rather than flopping around like a beached trout.


From → op-ed

  1. Everything you’re saying is correct, morally speaking, the primaries should represent a democratic participatory process, those who voted in them deserve the validation of their input yadda yadda.

    However, regarding your initial question, the delegates are the PARTY’S representatives, not legally beholden to public will at all. Primaries and caucuses are extra-governmental activities undertaken by private organizations. They aren’t elections in the same sense that we all get to vote for elected officials, whether we belong to parties or not.

    It is true that the major and the alternative parties perform these rituals, rehearsals for the real thing, that they use in deciding who to put before the people in the actual election. If they disregard the results of those exercises, it will have consequences in a public relations sense. But ultimately the party members just want to keep getting elected, all the way down to county officials. If they decide that nominating Trump hurts more than it helps in either the long or short term, they have both the power, and the legal right to prevent it.

  2. Actually, how “bound” the delegates are is determined by each state’s party apparatus. You are correct in saying that in that respect they are the party’s delegates. However, if the rule in a given state is that the delegates are bound to one candidate, and that “binding” is dependent on the popular vote, then they should have to vote for the candidates preferred by the people in the first round, at least according to the GOP rules as of today. Thanks for your comment!

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