No, Hillary Clinton did not clinch the Democratic nomination today

The news media is filling with stories about how Hillary has officially clinched the nomination as of June 6th 2016, but this assumes that the superdelegate votes are locked in. Of course, it is unlikely that most of the supers will change their vote, but they have not voted yet. The twitter group People4Bernie sent out the following graphic just moments ago that beautifully summarizes the issue:

demo-nom

The short version is, that Hillary has 1809 delegates to Bernie’s 1528, and they need to reach 2383 to clinch. Hillary therefore needs 574 more, Bernie needs 855 more. The total number of delegates in play on June 7th and June 14th is 714, so it is impossible for any candidate to clinch before June 14th. The superdelegates do not vote until July 25th (at the convention) so including them right now is premature. Bernie is unlikely to win, but he is not mathematically eliminated the way that the GOP candidates were, and Hillary has not clinched the nomination the way Trump has.

Calls for Bernie to drop out are hypocrisy incarnate, given that Hillary herself did not drop out until a week after Obama had clinched (for reals) the nomination in 2008. Bernie has 64% of delegates needed to clinch, versus Hillary’s 76%. This means Bernie’s support is a sizable fraction of the Democratic base and Bernie has every right to stay in the race so that his supporters have a strong voice at the convention.

And before anyone tries to argue that Bernie is hurting Clinton, remember the PUMAs, who all fell in line, despite all claims to the contrary. Example:

“I’m saddened because I just don’t think he decisively won,” said Clinton supporter Dana Marie Kennedy, 40, of Phoenix, who cashed in airline miles to buy a plane ticket from Arizona to Washington to attend Clinton’s event Saturday.

If the primaries has been a general election, Kennedy argued, Clinton’s Florida and Michigan votes would have be counted and her 17.8 million votes would have won out over Obama’s 17.5-million.

“It was the Supreme Court in 2000, and it was the superdelegates in 2008,” she said, bitterly.

Only 47% of Clinton supporters said they were certain to vote for Obama before the Democratic convention – and that number jumped to 65% afterwards. Granted, Hillary conceded before the convention, but Hillary never had the kind of support that Bernie does. That said, there’s no reason to believe “Bernie Bros” are any less the wishful thinking of the favored “Dems in disarray” media narrative than the PUMAs were.

Personally, I believe that Bernie will endorse Clinton and drop out if Hillary reaches 2383 before the convention (as Obama did). However, if Hillary does not reach 2383 before the convention, then Bernie has a duty to go all the way. Especially since there’s no way Donald Trump can win the general election.

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