Do you remember the 2000 presidential election when there was so much dissension over the popular vote versus the Electoral College? The claim by some Democrats was that Gore won the popular vote and the 'will of the people' should prevail. Bush, even though he won the Electoral College, shouldn't end up being president, they said.
You're probably wondering why I'm bringing this up. I cannot help but see the comparison of those claims in 2000 to some of the discussion and hand-wringing that is developing over the 2008 Democrat Primary.
Aside from the 'some are more equal than others' perspective inherent in the presence of super delegates, the Dems have super delegates who are not beholden to any candidate. They also have regular delegates pledged through the primary system. Sen. Barack Obama leads in delegates and in the popular vote, but there are nine states yet to weigh in. If Florida and Michigan are counted, Sen. Hillary Clinton comes within 12,000 in the popular votes and might be able to overtake Obama in this category.
This sets up an interesting dilemma for the Democrat Party. Do they stand by their 'will of the people' mantra which is still recited even today and insist that the delegates ignore their obligations in order to vote for the candidate who got the most popular votes? Or, do they expect the delegates to vote as pledged, even if it means a contradiction with their currently espoused argument relative to the 2000 race?
They are in a no-win situation. Either they contradict themselves or they change the rules midstream. Either way, the results will give fodder to conservative pundits and bloggers for months.