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Truth in Media: Donors, Lobbyists among Democratic Superdelegates

Author: Ben Swann
Created: 15 March, 2016
Updated: 16 October, 2022
2 min read

A new report found that some Democratic superdelegates are also registered lobbyists.

In the Democratic Party’s presidential primary process, superdelegates are party insiders who are allowed to vote for the candidate of their personal preference rather than on the basis of caucus or primary vote totals. While many superdelegate appointments are given to party activists and former and current elected officials, some have also been given to donors, including lobbyists.

According to ABC News’ analysis, of the 463 superdelegates who are not current or former elected officials, 67 are current or former registered lobbyists. There are 717 superdelegates in total who will vote among the July 25 nominating convention’s 4,763 delegates.

Zerohedge pointed out the fact that known lobbyists make up around 9 percent of the total number of superdelegates.

A majority of the lobbyist superdelegates have already pledged their support for former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Clinton is currently leading in the race for superdelegates, as 450 have already endorsed her candidacy versus 19 who are openly backing U.S. Sen. from Vermont Bernie Sanders. The remaining 248 have not yet indicated who they intend to support.

The Intercept’s Lee Fang wrote, “Although they make up only a small proportion of the superdelegates, the presence of lobbyists in such a potentially decisive role adds fuel to the critique that the Democratic Party is influenced by monied special interests. In recent months, the DNC quietly repealed rules instituted by Barack Obama that banned lobbyists from donating to the party.

The Democrat superdelegate system is a corrupt process designed to let insiders and lobbyists overturn the will of voters,” said Republican National Committee chairman Reince Priebus.

Should it come down to the superdelegates, the Democrats will be nominating a fellow insider under FBI investigation, and viewed so unfavorably that she couldn’t defeat a 74-year old self-avowed Socialist at the ballot box,” he added.

According to Politico, Clinton campaign spokesperson Jesse Ferguson said of Clinton’s edge among superdelegates, “We are proud of the strong support we have from elected leaders, Democratic Party officials, grassroots activists and volunteers all across this country who are helping Hillary Clinton earn the nomination.

When asked last month about his odds of picking up superdelegate votes, Sanders struck an optimistic tone and said, “I think if we continue to do well around the country and if superdelegates – whose main interest in life is to make sure that we do not have a Republican in the White House – if they understand that I am the candidate and I believe that I am who is best suited to defeat the Republican nominee I think they will start coming over to us.

The Democratic superdelegate system sparked controversy earlier this year when Hillary Clinton obtained more delegates in the New Hampshire primary than Sen. Sanders, despite his overwhelming victory at the polls that day, primarily due to the preferences of superdelegates.

Editor's note: This article, written by Barry Donegan, originally published on Truth in Media on March 15, 2016, and has been slightly modified for publication on IVN.