AP: Clinton raking in superdelegate votes
By Ben Kamisar
Hillary Clinton has increased her lead in the Democratic primary since her resounding loss to Bernie Sanders in New Hampshire by wooing 87 new party superdelegates to support her campaign over the past week.
The Associated Press reports that Sanders won the support of 11 superdelegates over that same time period.
While Sanders holds a small lead among pledged delegates awarded to him for his showings in Iowa and New Hampshire, Clinton’s massive superdelegate lead puts her ahead 481-55 in delegates to the Democratic National Convention, according to the AP’s count.
Superdelegates are party leaders — mainly members of Congress and the Democratic National Committee — who are allowed to support the candidate of their choosing at the summer nominating convention.
But these party leaders are free to change their minds until they cast their votes. So Tad Devine, a top Sanders campaign aide, told the AP he’s not worried about Clinton’s current lead.
“It is hardly an insurmountable lead and it can change overnight,” he said. “We are confident that superdelegates want to be behind the strongest candidates in a general election and have a nominee to help candidates win up and down the ballot.”
Jesse Ferguson, a Clinton campaign spokesman, told the AP that Clinton plans to “build a lead with pledged delegates,” awarded based on the candidates’ results in the state contests.
The presence of these superdelegates has so far insulated Clinton. Despite losing the popular vote in the New Hampshire primary, she left the state with the same number of delegates as Sanders thanks to a boost from six superdelegates.
That drew the ire of Sanders supporters — a MoveOn.org petition calling on superdelegates to back their state’s popular votes had 162,000 signatures as of Thursday.Follow enlightenedlbrl