Overcoming the Assault on Democracy

Veronica Persimmon
Feb 8 · 6 min read

The Democratic Party does not execute democracy well. On February 5, 2020, 72 hours after the Iowa Caucuses, Democratic National Committee chair Tom Perez dropped this bombshell regarding the results from the Iowa Caucus catastrophe with only 97% of the precincts reported:

At best, this was an attempt to trigger a recanvassing of the results from the disastrous Iowa Caucuses. At worst, Perez was preemptively negating the results because the remaining, unreported caucus numbers were from the IA-1 satellite caucus where a majority of working class, people of color recorded their preference. Coincidentally, this demographic leans heavily towards Bernie Sanders. It is important to note that the only entity that can trigger a recanvass are the presidential candidates’ campaigns, and not Tom Perez. Why did he even tweet that, then?

During the 72 hours following the Iowa Caucuses, Pete Buttigieg has been doing victory laps to celebrate his “win” eked out by using the only metric through which he could be crowned the winner — via undemocratic State Delegate Equivalents, which are allocations used to determine delegates that do not reflect the popular vote within any given district. One method of allocating SDEs is by a coin toss. If democracy were a person, they would weep.

The Iowa Democratic Party has been a complete and utter failure throughout this entire process. It took them nearly 72 hours to release 97% of the results, and during the release of these results, they reported numbers incorrectly that were checked by caucus leaders and journalists on social media.

What a mess! Imagine how much numerical manipulation Tom Perez, Troy Price, and the IDP would have gotten away with if caucus leaders and journalists alike were not vigilant during the rollout of the results.

All of this chaos happened in one state. One. State. One state where the voting happened out in the open and where there was a paper trail to verify Iowans’ preference.

What is going to happen in primary states where there is no paper trail, and the only record of votes are kept in black boxes or in electronic voting machine data, accessed only by DNC insiders?

Finally, four days after the Iowa Caucuses, more numbers have been released. As you can see in the table below, with 1,764 of 1,765 (99.9%) of the precincts reporting, Bernie Sanders has won the first alignment, second alignment, and the popular vote in Iowa. Yet somehow, Pete Buttigieg is the winner…because of the SDEs which again, are often determined by manipulated coin tosses, sometimes done by people who don’t even live in Iowa.

Results from the 2020 Iowa Caucuses with 99.9% of precincts reporting.
Results from the 2020 Iowa Caucuses with 99.9% of precincts reporting.
Source: https://features.desmoinesregister.com/news/politics/iowa-caucuses-results-alignment/

Glaring inconsistencies in the results have continually been pointed out on social media and are now being ignored by the IDP and mainstream media channels such as CNN and MSNBC. The MSM has been erroneously claiming to report on 100% of the results, giving the Iowa win to Buttigieg, when at the time of publication, results from only 99.9% of the precincts have been released. Why is a single precinct omitted from being tabulated into the results? Could it be because that precinct would put Sanders over the edge into winning Iowa?

No, that can’t be it. Asking that question would make this writer a conspiracy theorist. It’s one last precinct. What are the DNC and IDP waiting for?

Maybe the Democrats Are Not So Democratic

Most readers remember the 2016 Democratic primary elections during which many inexplicable discrepancies and delegate allocations took place. A favorite among fans of democracy was the peculiar instance during which the Associated Press declared Hillary Clinton the winner of the California primary on the eve of the actual primary elections. This resulted in other news media outlets reporting Clinton as the winner of primaries and the Nevada caucuses, before citizens were able to cast their votes. The call by the AP was based solely upon the number of superdelegates: unpledged delegates whose preferences overturn the will of the voters.

Superdelegates Are Undemocratic

What is a superdelegate? Historically, superdelegates, or automatic delegates, are members of the Democratic Party’s ruling class and the mechanism through which the candidate of a progressive base gets robbed of the party’s nomination. They are non-pledged delegates that are free to elevate the Democratic candidate of their own choosing, regardless of the popular vote in their city or state. One superdelegate vote is equivalent to 10,000+ regular votes and effectively overrides the popular vote for a candidate.

Although it is undeniable that in 2016, Hillary Clinton won over 3 million more votes than Bernie Sanders to become the nominee, the shenanigans carried out by superdelegates during the 2016 Democratic National Convention completely overrode the will of voters and eroded public trust. Watch Michael Moore’s documentary Fahrenheit 11/9 for a better glimpse into the undemocratic practices of the Democratic Party.

Clip from Michael Moore’s Fahrenheit 11/9

As you can see from the Fahrenheit 11/9 clip above, Bernie Sanders won the following states that were nevertheless awarded to Hillary Clinton by superdelegates, effectively subverting the will of the voters in each state:

  • West Virginia
  • Indiana
  • Michigan
  • Montana
  • New Hampshire
  • Rhode Island
  • Vermont

They really expected us to believe that Clinton won Vermont? I have an oceanfront property in Nebraska to sell you. Snarkiness aside, how did this happen? How did superdelegates from more than half a dozen states overturn the will of the voters? The short answer is, the DNC can do whatever it wants.

The DNC was notoriously broke in 2015–2016 and according to this interview with Donna Brazile, the DNC’s interim chair at the time, Clinton’s takeover of the party was contingent upon money Clinton raised for the DNC. This made it extremely difficult for Brazile to lead the Democrats because Clinton held the reigns. No one was surprised when Elizabeth Warren made this claim on CNN, which she later walked back after facing pressure form the DNC.

When it came down to the pledged delegate allocation in 2016, the process was so convoluted, it continues to bewilder voters. How did Sanders do better overall in some states but Clinton was awarded more delegates?

The 2016 Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia was such a mess that there was a reform committee which catalyzed an important change in procedure: superdelegates would not vote on the first ballot during the 2020 Democratic National Convention, and the same uncommitted delegates would not be triggered if one of the presidential candidates reaches the threshold of 50% plus 1 of the pledged delegates, which is 1,991.

It feels impossible when one considers the task of winning 1,991 of 3,979 pledged delegates just so that democracy has a fighting chance. What is a democracy if it consistently ignores and overrides the will of the populace?

Who actually has a voice in choosing who governs these United States when the Democratic Party elite maintains a methodology that erases votes and voters? Why should anyone even bother?

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, only 61.4% of eligible voters voted in 2016. That is a 0.4% drop from 2012. There is an untapped electorate in more than one-third of the American citizenry, and the cynicism that keeps eligible voters from voting indicates that a large fraction of the population does not believe that the government cares about them. They believe that nothing will ever change.

The corrupt behavior of the Democratic National Committee certainly is not doing any favors to inspire voters who desire progress to make time to vote. The only thing that can break this cycle of people surrendering their right to a democratic process is to inspire these voters to turn out in massive numbers that have never been seen in the history of American politics.

Cynicism is a societal cancer, and with issues like the climate crisis, the 530,000 people who file for medical bankruptcy annually, and stagnant wages, nothing will change unless a greater number of eligible voters decide to reclaim their power by voting out the greed and corruption that currently hold all of the power. When the powerless coalesce and get loud at the ballot box while keeping a vigilant watch over the corrupt system that handles their votes, there is no doubt that great change, which will benefit the many and not only the powerful few, exists just beyond the horizon.

Veronica Persimmon

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Writing is a form of self-care.

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