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View Diary: Pennsylvania Delegate-Count Tracker (173 comments)

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  •  of course, caveat that P.V. doesn't count sh!t (0+ / 0-)

    More here: The Popular Vote Myth

    Because of the differences in the participation rate of primaries and caucuses, the Democratic National Committee uses delegates to 'normalize' these two systems:  The number of delegates won is both proportional and representative of how the state voted, regardless of the system the state chooses to select them.

    Some 5th grade math:  Before you add 1/4 to 1/2, you have to first create a common demoninator.  In the DNC's Delegate Selection Rules, the delegate is that common demoninator.

    If the Democratic Party wanted to use the popular vote as a measure of the candidates' support, then it would require that all states hold a Democratic primary. (It would then be similar to that of the general presidential election, in which the popular vote in the state elections determine the electoral college.)  However, since the DNC allows both democratic caucuses and democratic primaries, then you have to use delegates to add the results of the caucuses to that of the primaries.

    Take another example:   Washington state (which Obama won) & Oklahoma (which Clinton won). Since Washington State is a relatively populous state, it's awarded 78 delegates.  However, since it uses caucuses to determine its delegate selection, it added very little to Obama's popular vote advantage (+90,000 according to Kos), despite his winning by a HUGE margin there (68%-32%; a 53-25 delegate advantage).  Compare this to Clinton's win in Oklahoma, which is about half the size of Washington. She won the popular vote in Oklahoma by a smaller margin, 55%-31%, and came away with a +10 delegate advantage (24-14). However, she gained a +100,000 popular vote advantage since it's a primary state and many more people participated than in Washington's caucus.

    Eventhough Clinton comes out ahead in comparing the "popular vote" between these two states (+10,000), I don't think anybody would debate that her Oklahoma win (+10 delegates) was more significant than Obama's Washington state win (+28 delegates!) (Okla isn't a "big state" afterall!).  Had Washington held a primary (one that actually counted, that is), Obama may have won the popular vote in the state by a margin in excess of 200,000 votes (closer to 300,000? just guestimating here).

    •  Oh, I agree entirely. (0+ / 0-)

      And we should argue that strenuously to the superdelegates who might be persuaded by popular-vote nonsense. (I worked my ass off too much preparing for the Minnesota caucuses on Super Tuesday to allow our results to go up in smoke.)

      But people are paying attention to the popular-vote jazz, so I'm afraid we have to keep an eye on it.

    •  pledged delegates (0+ / 0-)

      Isn't this actually part of the difficulty in analyzing these various wins?  Since so many fewer people participate (4% I think I heard) in caucus states, they tend to be the party activists as opposed to regular voters, and may not be representative.  A large number of delegates are awarded based on a small % of actual people.

      Then, as I learned today, in primary states like PA., the delegates were already pledged to a particular candidate before the first vote was cast...so Clinton may have won the popular vote, but all the delegates are going with Obama...that doesn't seem right either.

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