Saturday, January 12, 2008

Superdelegate switches from Edwards to Obama

WE'VE MOVED! Democratic Convention Watch is now at

The beginning of a trend, or just a one-time thing? North Carolina Congressman G.K. Butterfield has switched his endorsement from John Edwards to Barack Obama:

U.S. Rep. G.K. Butterfield has endorsed Illinois Sen. Barack Obama for president. The Wilson Democrat had previously backed former North Carolina Sen. John Edwards' bid for the Democratic presidential nomination.

In a statement from the Obama campaign, Butterfield was quoted as saying that he believes that Edwards is basically out of the race. "In what has become a two-person race for the Democratic nomination, I believe our country needs Senator Barack Obama," Butterfield said in the statement.

Will voters follow Buttefield's move? More from Matt Stoller at Open Left:
It's not clear who wins the Edwards voters. There is evidence either way. Demographically, Edwards supporters are closer to Clinton supporters, but in terms of who they went for in 2004 they are closer to Obama supporters. With Clinton nearly taking 50% in the latest CNN/Opinion Research poll, and a set of national primaries coming on February 5th, whether Edwards stays in or collapses may determine whether Obama has a shot.


Anonymous said...

Howdy! This is Leslie from Colorado Confidential-- great graphs! Hope you don't mind if I direct our readers over to look.

Question: Please help me settle a debate: does the 2025 delegate threshold represent 2/3'rds or a simple majority at the national convention? And, do some Democratic state parties allow delegates (aka "Swing Voters") to change their candidate preference on the convention floor?

Thanks for your sharing your convention expertise, Matt!

Matt said...

Please give us all the links you want!

2025 is 50%+1 - a simple majority of the delegates is needed. Democratic Party rules do NOT allow pledged delegates (those elected in primaries or caucuses) to change their vote for the first ballot. These rules are part of the reforms that were instituted in the 1970s - the people's verdict can not be changed! (See 1980 convention when Kennedy tried to get the rule overturned). After the first ballot, they can vote for anybody. Also, this rule does not apply to superdelegates. While they may announce a preference, they can change their mind at any time.

Anonymous said...

Why wouldn't he support Obama? He's an African American. According to Wikipedia, "Butterfield's father was elected to the Wilson City Council in 1953 making him one of the first African American elected officials in North Carolina since Reconstruction."

I'm sick of this.

Obama belongs to Trinity United Church, a racist, all-black church in the tradition of Malcolm X, not MLK, whose website mission at states:

"We are a congregation which is Unashamedly Black and Unapologetically Christian... Our roots in the Black religious experience and tradition are deep, lasting and permanent. We are an African people, and remain "true to our native land," the mother continent, the cradle of civilization. God has superintended our pilgrimage through the days of slavery, the days of segregation, and the long night of racism. It is God who gives us the strength and courage to continuously address injustice as a people, and as a congregation. We constantly affirm our trust in God through cultural expression of a Black worship service and ministries which address the Black Community."

Enough already! Obama is Karl Rove's wet dream. There is NO WAY he will be elected. These endorsements are dangerous and misleading, playing right into the hands of the Republican party.


Anonymous said...

I am from NC and I am an Edwards supporter. Edwards supporters are well aware of the way Democratic "leadership" behaves and we know they will fold at the slightest anxiety. Butterfield is just another one. You underestimate both Edwards and his supporters. Obama and Hillary are tacticians in the centrist tradition--which is why they will kill one another at the polls. But Edwards is not going away. Dream as you like.

Anonymous said...

Red State Democrats are endorsing Obama because they understand he can help them win the support of independents and new voters.

Democratic women are endorsing Obama because they understand that at this moment, America deserves change we can believe in.

DNC superdelegates are swinging to Obama because they understand that the future of the party depends on Obama being our nominee in 2008.

Hargrove said...

If a Jewish synogogue published their affinity for things Jewish, we wouldn't think anything of it. But there's a sense of the wrongs done to Africans, who were enslaved, and their descendants, causing some people feel like self acceptance, on the part of *Diasporans, is synonymous with the rejection of Europeans.

*Diasporan: A descendant of a survivor of the African diaspora.

D-Man said...

This is to the first anonymous who says that Butterfield switched to Obama because Obama is Black. Now who is the racist? Butterfield, remember, originally supported Edwards (a decidedly white male)and when things began to look like Edwards doesn't have a shot, he switched to Obama. Obama and Edwards agree on more issues than not and on more issues than Edwards and Clinton. Why is it such a stretch to believe that Butterfield went with Obama when the Edwards campaign began to fail based on their similarities owith regard to the issues and not race? Just because Butterfield is black? Obama has plently of support (in fact the majority of his support) that is not black. get a grip man!