5.14.2008

Pledged delegate breakdown and endorsement flow, May 14th edition

It's endorsement season in the Democratic primary, and Barack Obama getting a big boost today with the endorsement of NARAL, the pro-choice advocacy group. NARAL's endorsement page suggests (and the AP confirms) that this is meant as a general election endorsement carried through because Clinton is believed to have no more chance of clinching the nomination; this is in some ways even worse for Hillary as it confirms that the Democratic universe is rallying around Obama with increasing speed in an effort to move beyond the primary.

Emily's List, however, is not happy with NARAL's decision with the group's president blasting NARAL:
"I think it is tremendously disrespectful to Sen. Clinton... to not give her the courtesy to finish the final three weeks of the primary process. It certainly must be disconcerting for elected leaders who stand up for reproductive rights and expect the choice community will stand with them." In other womens' rights news, Obama has to answer questions about yet another comment with sexist connotations after having called a reporter "sweetie."

Meanwhile, rumors are flying that John Edwards could be hours away from endorsing Obama [Update: The rumors are getting stronger]. The Edwards couple did just do an interview in People magazine to make the point that they wouldn't endorse, but Edwards has said since then that he believes the race is over and that Obama is the nominee (yet again, so has James Carville). In more concrete endorsement news, 5 more superdelegates announced their support today (not that there is one more uncommitted superdelegate now with the election of Travis Childers in MS-01):

  • As most days, Obama heavily outperformed Clinton, winning the support of Indiana Rep. Pete Vislosky, Oklahoma Senate President Pro Tempore Mike Morgan, Democrats Abroad Chair Christine Schon Marques (she only gets 1/2 a vote) and College Democrats VP Awais Khaleel. The President of College Democrats also endorsed Obama but he is from Michigan so he does not get to vote.
  • Clinton got one superdelegate endorsement, from the head of the Tennessee Federation of Democratic Women, Vicky Harwell.
That's 3.5 votes for Obama versus 1 for Clinton. The pool of superdelegates is narrowing daily and Clinton is falling further and further behind. The number of superdelegates who are justifying their endorsement by saying that the race is over makes it difficult, to say the least, to see how Clinton could suddenly get the near-unanimity of remaining superdelegates she needs. As for the pledged delegate count, it continues to look bleak for Clinton. Besides the numbers in West Virginia (see below), two other state breakdowns have changed since my last breakdown this past week-end.

First, Maryland, as a Clinton pledged delegate announced he would vote Obama (a first in this campaign), making the MD total 43-27. In Ohio, meanwhile, provisional ballots were done counting (6 weeks after) and Clinton's 10% victory is now down to a single-digit 9% win... which made her lose a pledged delegate, down to 74-67 from 75-66. And finally we now know the breakdown from:

West Virginia: Clinton 67%- 26% Obama

  • Clinton: 20 delegates
  • Obama: 8
This brings us to the following total of pledged delegates:

  • Obama: 1601.5 delegates
  • Clinton: 1443.5
  • Remaining: 189
There is now a differential of 158 pledged delegates, with Clinton closing the margin by 8 since last week-end. I do not keep a running tab of superdelegates and the count depends on the media group. Obama appears to have somewhere around a 10 superdelegate lead presently, leaving Obama around 140 delegates to the new magic number of 2,026. Note that the Clinton campaign want to use a threshold that includes the delegate count of Michigan and Florida.

8 Comments:

  • Edwards has endorsed Obama.

    The Democratic party is rallying around Obama. He has the nomination - yes the primaries will run to June 3rd just like they will for the Republicans but the competition is over.

    Obama does not have a problem with white voters, just Appalachian blue collar workers - a small sub-set of all voters.

    By Anonymous Mike, At 14 May, 2008 19:17  

  • Edwards endorsement clears the way for Obama to claim the "uncommitted" votes in MI. This may seem to benefit Obama but it really removes a major roadblock to seating those delegates fairly. Obama's white problem is not at all localized to appalachia. Nice try but no cigar.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, At 14 May, 2008 19:31  

  • Yeah your right, Edwards did just endores Obama, I'm looking at it on Yahoo news right now. I'm not yet willing to say that Obama is the presumptive nominee, as Clinton is in much better shape now than Huckabee after February 5, but she is slowly slipping away. I think that if Obama wins both SD and MT (MT, unlike SD, only barely leans Obama and Clinton could pull off a win, althrough I haven't seen any recent polling yet) I strongly expect that she will concede to Obama on June 3rd. If she happens to win MT, then she will probably will wait a few days to maybe try one last push in convicing SDs (which of course can change their mind) and then probably suspend her campaign in mid-to late june.

    I know that Clinton really to stay in the race, and with her likely to win KY and PR by double digits and a small chance in MT, there is nothing that will happen barring an upset Obama victory in one of these primaries that would force Clinton out before June 3rd. But after FL and MI are hopefully settled on May 31 and the primaries are over, she will no longer have any rational to contiune, she could stay in, which would make it harder for Obama in the GE but it would also hurt her own political reputation among the Democratic leaders. And with Edwards endorsing Obama, his delegates will likely gravitate towards him.

    By Anonymous jaxx raxor, At 14 May, 2008 19:35  

  • No sense in pulling out before the convention. After 6/3 there are no campaigns except the ge where Obama is welcome to take on the republican smear machine. If he still has a future by the convention, he might win the nomination. If he crumbles like he has at every lttle thing in this extremely mild primary, Hillary will take over and win the WH. Why do you think 63% percent of Democrats want her to stay in until the end? The majority expects Obama to come crashing down and they want a backup. The same goes for the 60% that want her to be the VP. Obama can be the "presumptive nominee" as long as he can handle the heat.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, At 14 May, 2008 19:44  

  • Anon - how has Obama crumbled? He has taken on the Clinton machine with all the money and talent that involved and he overcame it.

    It is true that Obama has a problem with a sub set of blue collar white voters. He won white voters in VA and WI. He also got 40% in states like IN and NC. So I don't think he has a huge problem.

    Even if you think he does have a problem, that is him against Clinton. The contrast is now Obama vs McCain and policy counts.

    By Anonymous Mike, At 14 May, 2008 19:49  

  • I don`t need a cigar thanks Anon. Obama has won more votes - they are not only from AA's and students!

    By Anonymous Mike, At 14 May, 2008 19:49  

  • Just 16 more delegates until Obama has the majority of pledged delegates. :D

    By Anonymous Anonymous, At 14 May, 2008 20:58  

  • Anon--

    You keep rambling about Obama's "white voter problem", but you continually ignore the contrary evidence. He's won extremely white states outside of Appalachia. He polls better than Clinton in Michigan. He won the white vote in Wisconsin, in Virginia, in Iowa. His polling numbers for the GE among white voters are the same as Kerry's numbers in 2004. Even in the states he supposedly has "trouble" in, like IN, NC, and PA, he got 37 or 40% of the vote.

    Does Hillary have a "black voter problem"? She's been getting *less than ten percent* of black votes in the last few states. Does that mean she'll lose them to McCain? Do you really think she can win in November if she does?

    Of course not, to all of the above. Your argument has no basis in reality, regardless of how many times you repeat it.

    By Blogger Stephen, At 14 May, 2008 23:34  

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