Kevin Standlee (kevin_standlee) wrote,
Kevin Standlee
kevin_standlee

Big Conventions & Small

Based on news reports that I've read, it appears that the shift in delegate votes at Nevada's county Democratic conventions was similar in both little Lyon County and enormous Clark County, and apparently others, in that Clinton lost about 8% of the delegates she won at the February caucus, because a lot more Clinton delegates (and even alternates) simply didn't show up at the county conventions, and thus their places were taken by alternates who voted for Sanders. As this article explains, Clinton won about 53% of the county-level delegates at the February caucus, but so many of her delegates failed to show that it looks like she'll only get about 45% of the state-level delegates. The article goes on to say that this probably means that Clinton will only get 18 of Nevada's 35 delegates instead of the initially projected 20. (Remember that this number includes "superdelegates," who are senior party members not beholden to any electorate's decision, and thus expected to vote for Hillary, the establishment candidate, over Sanders, the outsider.) This could change, however, if the Sanders delegates don't maintain discipline. They need to show up in Las Vegas as well.

What I find fascinating is how the Clark and Washoe delegate swings were almost the same percentage as those in Lyon. You'd think there would be more variation, but they were all in the same neighborhood, varying by only a few points. It just looks like Clinton's supporters statewide though their work was done back in February and defaulted on their duty to carry the job on to the second level.

Mind you, caucusing and conventioneering is hard. I know from my experience with WSFS Business Meetings now much depends on a devoting a whole lot of time that you might want to spend doing other things. But in this case, it does mean that the selection is being driven by the most dedicated members of the party. Whether this is better than a primary-type system where you just cast a ballot is hard to say. I advocated for a mixed WSFS system whereby legislation would continue to be originated and modified by those people who show up, but would have to be ratified by a ballot of the entire membership. This proposal failed, for multiple reasons. Nevada gains some advantages with using a caucus system (more money from the central committee, more influence because we're only third in line instead of last) but also loses things (most party members do not or cannot go to caucuses).
Tags: politics
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