The two of us disagree about Hillary and Bernie, but we agree on this
By Christine Pelosi and Anna Galland
One of us is #ImWithHer. One of us is #FeelTheBern. Both of us are #TeamDemocracy.
While we disagree on whom the Democratic presidential nominee should be, we strongly agree on who should determine the nominee — the voters — and on the need to have a process that is fair, transparent, and democratic. As working moms of young children whose generation’s future will be shaped by the next president, we want our kids to engage in politics and to see that people in conflict over a candidate need not be in conflict with one another. That’s why we’ve joined together in a campaign encouraging Democratic superdelegates to support the will of the voters.
For the Democratic Party to live up to its values, voters who are finally getting their chance to make their voices heard in primaries and caucuses across the nation should determine the party’s nominee. Their tens of millions of votes should not be overturned by just over seven hundred party leaders who will make up the superdelegates to the Democratic National Convention in July.
Both the Clinton and Sanders campaigns have built world-class voter turnout operations and are inspiring voters from coast to coast to support their cause. This is how a democracy should work. In some states, Hillary will win. In others, Bernie will win. As long as superdelegates let the voters decide, then in the end, no matter who is the nominee, our democracy will win.
But if party insiders end up making the crucial difference, voting against the will of the people they represent at the Democratic National Convention, then they’ll effectively disenfranchise and likely alienate millions of voters who will need to be inspired to stand together to beat Donald Trump, Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz, John Kasich, or Ben Carson.
We are ready to work our hearts out for our respective choices — and then come together after all voters have spoken to unite around the pledged delegate winner. We invite superdelegates to join us in this commitment.
There are 712 superdelegates to the Democratic National Convention. These superdelegates make up about 30 percent of the 2,382 delegates whose votes are needed to win the nomination. If the Democratic primary is a long, drawn-out process, it’s completely possible that the superdelegates could sway the race in one direction or another.
The Democratic Party — at its best — is the party of inclusion. It seeks to make voting easier, not harder, and to empower and enable Americans to participate fully in the democratic process. These values make it stronger. But they will be undermined if the process used to select the Democratic nominee takes power away from voters and if the party reverts to the days of men in smoke-filled back rooms making the decisions. Voter disenfranchisement is a tool of the Right — not of the Democratic Party.
That is why, as a Clinton supporter and a Sanders supporter, we’re calling on all Democratic superdelegates to join us on #TeamDemocracy. Superdelegates should pledge to back the candidate with the most pledged delegates determined by the voters. This is not only the right small “d” democratic thing to do, it’s also the right big “D” Democratic thing to do.
Democracy works only when the votes of the people determine the outcome of elections. That is a value all Democrats should be able to rally behind, regardless of their choice of candidate.
Christine Pelosi (@sfpelosi) is an attorney, author, elected DNC member and Hillary Clinton supporter. Anna Galland (@annagalland) is executive director of MoveOn.org Civic Action, and a Bernie Sanders supporter.