Using Technology to Deepen Democracy, Using Democracy to Ensure Technology Benefits Us All
Monday, February 15, 2016
The Sanders campaign began revolting against the superdelegate system of the Democratic Party only when Sanders realized he is not getting any superdelegates. Sanders already knew about this system when he decided to run for the nomination of the Democratic Party, and Ted Devine, Senior Adviser to the Sanders campaign helped to craft the superdelegate system he now excoriates. By running as a Democrat, Sanders gained legitimacy (as a competitor to a figure with an international profile like Hillary Clinton among other things), as well as priceless informational and organizational resources. He has not yet seen fit to do any of the party-building or down-ticket fundraising you might expect a candidate to consider a responsibility given the benefits the party has conferred on him. Sanders likes to offer up glib generalities about "enthusiasm" and "turnout" that are presumably his contribution to a party crying out for his charismatic cult of personality -- but it is unclear how loyal or useful or dedicated (say, come the mid-terms) "Bernie-or-Bust" latecomers to the party will actually turn out to be. Certainly, Bernie's promises that the unprecedented turnouts mobilized by his "Revolution" will magically bulldoze away Republican obstruction and the complex competing demands of actually-existing actually-powerful institutional stakeholders seem even less credible once we notice that so far Bernie's turnout numbers have conspicuously underperformed Obama's from eight years ago -- Obama whose performance in office has been such a crushing disappointment to Bernie and so many of his supporters. I must say I fully expect Bernie to go back to condemning the party he now seeks to be the head of the moment he loses its nomination fair and square all too soon.