Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Tracking the super-delegates

As we have heard, the outcome of the race to Democrat candidate in the US presidential election is down to the delegates who are sent from each of the states and then the superdelegates who can, when the contest is close, be swayed by the candidates and their campaigns, the voting across the states or other interests. Some have already declared, some are undecided but have voiced leanings but until the nothing is definite. The only hints are what the superdelegates say, privately or publicly directly or in the media. To aid understanding and observation of the process, an online wiki has been created to monitor these hints. The Superdelegate Transparency Project has created a wobble list, currently there is little 'wobbling' going on but if any citizen hears a hint that a declared or leaning candidate does hint a shift in their allegiance they can report it and, quite clearly, it would be difficult to shift for the wrong reasons as any hint of shift may have to be justified.

The important thing is the fact that it is the citizen that is asked to contribute to this wiki and report hints of shifts by the superdelegates. This empowers the electorate to scrutinise the superdelegates and go online to both monitor and report on their behaviour. Backroom deals are made more difficult and it is the citizens at whatever level that can monitor activity. The problem maybe that anyone could maliciously post and undermine a superdelegate or even a candidate; whether this will happen is an interesting one to watch particularly as the campaign heats up, pressure becomes more intense and thus superdelegates are called on to declare.

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