Thursday, May 12, 2016

Democracy NOT at work

Fun & games


TED CRUZ who "suspended" his campaign after repeatedly losing to Donald Trump is, according to the tv talking heads, considering "unsuspending" his campaign.

Will he resurrect his failed campaign as an independent or will he try to deny the voters' mandates via the GOP convention?

MEANWHILE Hillary Clinton, determined to carry on her mentor's "awful" legacy* is unconcerned about the fact that Bernie Sanders seems to be winning in both town and country elections, expecting "super delegates" to save her no matter how popular Sanders is with voters across the country.

The question for Hillary: Is Sander's message getting the votes of are Clinton's lies and scandals losing her votes?

Cruz managed to win 500-plus delegates before Trump took a commanding delegate lead. Then Cruz, and his political partner, John Kasich - having agreed to a non-compete contract to win delegates where each thought he had a chance against Trump - dropped out of the race.

So far, Kasich has stood by his word and not, as has Cruz, threatened to renege and re-enter the race.

Rumor is that Cruz is heartily disliked by his fellows in Congress. There are multiple web sites attesting to this and what Cruz did to earn the displeasure of his fellow club members, including:

To cite just three sites (that I sighted?)

Being disliked by Congress isn't necessarily fatal to a president's plans, but belong respected by Congress - because he knew where "the bodies were buried" - allowed LBJ to get a number of not-particularly-popular-in-Congress programs passed; Head Start and the War on Poverty to name two.

Admittedly, many members of Cruz' Capitol Hill club also would like to see an establishment, old guard, easy-to-keep-in-line candidate rather than the spoiler Trump. It seems only the people - who really do NOT have a vote (at the convention) - want Trump as their candidate.

    If you failed to learn it in grammar school. The U.S. has a "republican" (lower case "r") form of government. We "sort of" elect people to vote our proxy at the conventions. A "democratic" (lower case "d") form of government would have all eligible citizens directly vote for the candidate of their choice, doing away with conventions and the (in)famous "smoke-filled back room deals."

ON THE DEMOCRATIC (party) side, Sanders is gaining on Clinton. One reason may be Clinton is playing the conservative card while Sanders is a "died-in-the-wool and happy to admit it" Socialist. Sanders apparently has the youth vote, but then he promises free university education.

    QUESTION: Who is going to pay for this "free" education? The taxpayer pays for every other "free" benefit. Perhaps this benefit will be paid by mortgaging our great grandchildren - the grandchildren already are mortgaged to the hilt (and owned by China).

On the other hand, the LA Times' David Lauter considers Why the more liberal Bernie Sanders beats Hillary Clinton among more conservative Democrats

At one point, Sanders admitted he probably could not defeat Clinton, but he wanted to have a say in building the party platform.

Sanders - to date - has far fewer earned-by-vote count delegates to the convention than Clinton. Clinton considers the party's super delegates to be in her hand, so no matter how many voters prefer Sanders, she has the nomination locked up.

ABOUT THOSE "SUPER DELEGATES" describes super delegates thusly:

    Super delegates are not selected on the basis of party primaries and caucuses in each state. Instead, super delegate standing is based on the status of current or former officeholders and party officials, including all Democratic members of Congress. Super delegate is a term that arose in the 1970s.

    In order for a candidate to win the party nomination for president, he or she must gain the majority of delegate votes. The purpose of super delegates is for high-ranking Democrats to maintain some control over the nominating process. Super delegates make up one-fifth of the delegates at the Democratic National Convention. So, 747 of the 5,083 delegates attending the 2016 Democratic National Convention can choose whichever candidate they prefer.

Wikipedia identifies the super delegates and the candidates they are pledged to support. Clinton has far and away the most super delegates.

The Huffington Post apparently neither a fan of Clinton or the super delegate process, claims in a headline that Clinton and the DNC Are Not Just Colluding — They’re Changing the Rules for Super delegates.

The Post contends that

    in the context of Democratic National Committee rules — which, as DNC officials Luis Miranda and Debbie Wasserman Schultz have both explained to the media repeatedly, dictate that super-delegates cannot be tallied until July — there can be no doubt about which sentence in the above-cited NBC News story is the most important. It’s this one, about what the Clinton campaign and the DNC have been up to since April (more than three months prior to the Party’s late-July convention).

The Post goes on to state

On February 19th, only two states — Iowa and New Hampshire — had held primary votes for the Democratic presidential nomination. The results in Iowa (a tie) and New Hampshire (a landslide victory for Bernie Sanders) had at that point made Sanders the front-runner for the nomination.

Sanders was the leader in the popular vote.

Sanders was the early leader in the all-important pledged-delegate count.

And here’s where the super-delegate count stood on February 19th:

    Hillary Clinton: 451 Bernie Sanders: 19

The U.S. electoral system was put into place before we had access to nearly instantaneous communication over great distances. Now, at least in theory, American's eligible and legal voters could directly cast their ballots for this candidate or that - turning America into a democracy! The "in theory" is because that has been, since voting first began, voting fraud. Add to that we now have lost all protection that our communications are private or that they will arrive in the same way they were sent - a vote for candidate "A" will remain a vote for candidate "A" when the votes are counted.

The Politico web sites reported that as of March 24, Trump had 1,134 delegates to Cruz' 564. Marco Rubio had 166 before he dropped out. No other GOP candidates had double-digit pledged delegates. If Cruz "drops back in," the best he can do in the delegate race is a poor second behind Trump, even if Rubio gives him his delegates. Again, this delegate count is from March.

If Trump, Sanders, and Clinton fail to win your vote, consider the Libertarian Party's Gary Johnson or the Green Party's Dr. Jill Stein.


* According to Hillary's husband, ex-president Wm. Clinton.

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