Patterico's Pontifications

2/19/2008

How to “Woo” a Superdelegate: Fork Out Some Cash

Filed under: 2008 Election,General — Patterico @ 12:03 am



An L.A. Times story is titled How to woo a superdelegate. The deck headline reads: “The Democratic candidates and their surrogates use patience, persistence and a personal touch. A Michelle Obama phone call persuades one to switch sides.”

Before the telephone rang at 10:03 Saturday morning in her Philadelphia home, Carol Ann Campbell was inclined to use her position as a superdelegate to the Democratic National Convention to make Hillary Rodham Clinton the party’s presidential nominee.

By the time she hung up, Campbell had been persuaded to throw her support to Barack Obama.

On the other end of the line was Michelle Obama, 44, the Illinois senator’s wife. In that 1-hour, 27-minute call, the would-be first lady made the sale.

Awwww. How sweet.

Of course, there are some other ways superdelegates are being “wooed.” And money is involved.

Karl at Protein Wisdom notes an article with this interesting tidbit about bribery odd donations by the campaigns for the Democrat candidates:

[W]hile it would be unseemly for the candidates to hand out thousands of dollars to primary voters, or to the delegates pledged to represent the will of those voters, elected officials who are superdelegates have received at least $890,000 from Obama and Clinton in the form of campaign contributions over the last three years…

Gee, wouldn’t it be more than “unseemly” to hand out money to voters in the name of a campaign?

By the way, it turns out Mr. Hope has given out more bribes donations, by far.

Now that’s good wooin’!

Next question: have the campaigns given any money to politicians who are not superdelegates?

That would make an interesting news story. How likely do you think we are to see it?

Yeah, I think we’re far more likely to see stories about sweet phone calls from Michelle Obama. There’s the narrative to consider, you know.

13 Responses to “How to “Woo” a Superdelegate: Fork Out Some Cash”

  1. Ah ha! Woo – subtle racist double-entendre meant to remind us of all those chinese Clinton fundraiser scandals!

    Dean (279254)

  2. By the way, it turns out Mr. Hope has given out more bribes donations, by far.

    The Clintons are accustomed to accepting bribes, not giving bribes.

    Perfect Sense (b6ec8c)

  3. I think there’s less here then meets the eye. If they were throwing that kind of money at say, the people in charge of the National Democratic Seniors Coordinating Council (yes, they are superdelegates. No, it doesn’t make sense) then yeah that’d be a scandel. But all the major Democratic Party elected officials (e.g. anyone in Congress or governors) are superdelegates. As such it makes perfect sense that people like Obama and Clinton would’ve directed money their way “over the last three years”. If anything Democratic primary voters should think they probably should’ve given more money (Clinton could’ve spent less on her 2006 coronation and directed that money to Democratic campaigns).

    Polybius (14e4f1)

  4. OK, fair enough Patterico. This system needs to be overhauled.

    But if you consider those bribes, you have to regard all those gargantuan campaign contributions bribes too? I’ll bet you’ll say that’s different somehow. But it’s not.

    Now do you see how silly it is to talk about free speech in such a context?

    Psyberian (d18acc)

  5. But where is Obama getting is money from. I read that he spent more money in Florida? than any other presidential candidate.

    davod (5bdbd3)

  6. I think I get it with the help of this hint from Patterico. Charity accompanies hope and faith (in the Obamessiah).

    nk (798403)

  7. Each superdelegate is equivalent to around 22,000 registered democrats.

    Amphipolis (fdbc48)

  8. That’s based on 72 million registered democrats being represented by 3253 pledged delegates. Each superdelegate’s vote counts 22,000 times, so their vote can cancel out the vote of a small city.

    Some people count more than others.

    Amphipolis (fdbc48)

  9. The best comparison to the internal politics of the Democratic Party is the Communist Party of the Soviet Union in 1926. Let’s hope it never gets to 1937.

    nk (798403)

  10. Ah ha! Woo – subtle racist double-entendre meant to remind us of all those chinese Clinton fundraiser scandals!

    I love this. This commenter reads something into the word “woo” that I never intended . . . and then calls me a racist.

    Dean, if you’re so obsessed with nationality that you can’t read the word “woo” without thinking of Asians, that’s not my problem. It’s yours.

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  11. Now do you see how silly it is to talk about free speech in such a context?

    No.

    I explained why back in 2003.

    Let me make this as clear as I can. If I want to run an ad saying George Bush (or, if I am clinically insane, Howard Dean) is the greatest thing to happen to the world since sliced bread, there is this thing called the First Amendment that says I can do that. If I want to spread that message on full-page ads in every newspaper in the United States, I can do that, no matter the cost. I don’t think any of this is subject to debate.

    Now, let’s say I want to call up Karl Rove and ask him, what do you think makes George Bush the greatest thing since sliced bread? Rove tells me a couple of things, and by golly, I’m convinced! Rove really makes some good points! So I say those things in my multi-million dollar ad. Now you’re telling me the government can prevent me from doing this? I can’t express my own deeply held opinion on a political matter because I arrived at that opinion after speaking to Karl Rove? That way lies madness. The First Amendment cannot logically be interpreted this way. (I know it already has been, but I think the decision is wrong.)

    I still feel the same way. We can point out how payments resemble bribery — but unless you want to gut the First Amendment, you will always be able to do an end run by simply speaking out on behalf of your candidate and/or issue. Free speech and money simply cannot be separated, and if you restrict money, you’ll be restricting speech. Period.

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  12. Free speech and money simply cannot be separated, and if you restrict money, you’ll be restricting speech. Period.

    I agree completely. George Soros should be able to spend as much as he wants, but others should be free to point out how it’s spent to advance his agenda. I’ve never understood how the Supreme Court could uphold McCain-Feingold. In the military, our political speech was (rightfully, IMHO) restricted in the interests of good order and discipline. There’s no way that I’ll stand for it now that I’m out. I’ll say what I believe no matter how close it is to an election.

    Stashiu3 (460dc1)

  13. They like lots of portaites of BEN FRANKLYN and U.S. GRANT all colored green withh lots of numbers

    krazy kagu (591d76)


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