Maine Democrats Vote To Essentially Eliminate Superdelegates

Christine Rousselle
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Posted: May 10, 2016 12:00 PM
Maine Democrats Vote To Essentially Eliminate Superdelegates

Maine Democrats took an unusual step at their convention this past weekend and effectively eliminated the influence of superdelegates. Starting in 2020, superdelegates from the state will be bound to the results of the state's Democratic caucus or primary. Currently, superdelegates are free to cast their vote for the candidate of their choice. The delay in policy to the next election cycle is to avoid punishments from the DNC.

The Maine Democratic Party also called for a complete end to the "superdelegate" system that the party has used since the mid-80s.

From the Portland Press Herald:

In a message aimed at national party leaders, Maine Democrats voted to require that, beginning in 2020, the state’s total delegate votes at the national convention must be awarded proportionately to the results of the state’s presidential caucus or primary. That could bind some superdelegates – who currently hold five of Maine’s 30 seats to the Democratic National Convention – to supporting certain candidates in order to maintain the outcome of the statewide vote.

The proposal, which was sponsored by state Rep. Diane Russell, D-Portland, would urge but not require this year’s superdelegates to honor the outcome of the Democratic caucuses in March, when Sanders won 63 percent of the votes amid record turnout in Maine. Finally, it calls on the national party to eliminate the superdelegate system altogether.

Despite the fact that Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) won nearly 66 percent of the vote in Maine's Democratic caucus, three of Maine's five superdelegates are supporting Hillary Clinton--which angered many of the state's Sanders supporters.

Maine is likely returning to primaries following a disastrous caucus.