Politico reported last night that Hillary Clinton, counting pledged delegates and superdelegates, has crossed the 50% threshold (2,383) and is the presumptive Democratic nominee for president, the first woman ever to earn a major party nomination.
Hillary Clinton became the presumptive Democratic nominee in a surprise development on Monday, making her the first woman ever to win a major party’s presidential nomination one day before she was expected to cross the threshold.
The historic moment, years in the making, came after the former secretary of state passed the mark with a combination of pledged and superdelegates in her contest against Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders.
But the announcement — first made by The Associated Press, and quickly confirmed by NBC and ABC — had not been expected until Tuesday night, when results from six states, including California and New Jersey, come in. Clinton’s campaign had prepared a major victory rally in Brooklyn for Tuesday night, exactly eight years to the day after she conceded the 2008 race to then-Sen. Barack Obama.
Bernie Sanders and his supporters are, of course, outraged.
But Sanders, long suspicious of superdelegates’ role in the process, refused to concede on Monday night. His communications director, Michael Briggs, decried the media’s “rush to judgment,” signaling Sanders’ intention to fight on.
“It is unfortunate that the media, in a rush to judgment, are ignoring the Democratic National Committee’s clear statement that it is wrong to count the votes of superdelegates before they actually vote at the convention this summer,” Briggs said in a statement noting that Clinton “does not have and will not have the requisite number of pledged delegates to secure the nomination.”
I’m confused. For months, we heard that the superdelegates should not overrule the will of the voters – but now Sanders is basing his path to victory on persuading superdelegates to do just that, as Clinton leads among pledged delegates and received millions more votes than did Sanders. And the AP, before reporting the story, spent the day surveying superdelegates and only included such votes in Clinton’s column if the individual in question indicated he or she was “unequivocally” for Clinton.
Take the fight to the convention if you believe you should, Senator Sanders. But the Democratic Party has a nominee, and it’s not you. Make the fight going forward about issues, not personalities. Dial down the invective and begin the focus on the general election. Anything else is irresponsible. Unless you’re enthused about Donald Trump as president, in which case I’ve got nothing more to say to you.