Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Congressional Black Caucus Comes Out Forcefully Against Bernie Sanders’ Proposed “Transformation” of Democratic Primary Process
The CBC is prepared to battle Sanders over super delegates and opening primaries and caucuses to independent voters


Nearly one week ago, Bernie Sanders stood in front of the Democratic National Committee headquarters in Washington, D.C. and demanded a “fundamental transformation of the Democratic Party,” calling for significant changes to the process by which the party selects its presidential nominee. Now, at least one major caucus within the party is already protesting two of Sanders’ biggest proposed changes.

“Somewhere between 1,900 and 2,000 delegates [are going] to Philadelphia,” Sanders noted, referring to the party’s nominating convention next month. “They want to see the Democratic Party transformed,” he insisted, before listing a set of demands that included opening up all primaries to Independent voters, same-day voter registration and an end to the superdelegate system. (Notably, Sanders did not call for any changes to the caucus system).

“We need to also make sure that superdelegates do not live in a world of their own but reflect, reflect, the views of the people in their own states,” he said, repeating his continued attack on the system by which over 600 Democratic Party loyalists and elected officials are granted a vote at the nominating convention that is unattached to any votes cast in the primaries or caucuses.

But while Democrats in California and Nebraska followed Sanders’ lead over the weekend, moving to push for some of those specific changes to the nominating process over, members of the Congressional Black Caucus released a letter expressing their “unanimous” and “vehement” opposition to Sanders’ call to abolish superdelegates and to open the primaries and caucuses to voters not registered with the Democratic Party.

“The Democratic Members of the Congressional Black Caucus recently voted unanimously to oppose any suggestion or idea to eliminate the category of Unpledged Delegate to the Democratic National Convention (aka Super Delegates) and the creation of uniform open primaries in all states,” a letter sent to the Sanders campaign, Hillary Clinton campaign and Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz over the weekend read.

In a series of letters first reported by Politico, the CBC officials specifically argued against allowing independents and Republicans to vote in Democratic primaries and in follow-up comments to the magazine, argued in favor of the much maligned superdelegate system.

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