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Opinion

Super-delegates may make the final decision

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March 27, 2008

America is a nation built on democratic principles. Every citizen has a vote and right to cast that vote.

Regardless of political affiliations, almost every political party in the United States believes in that basic principle.

The Democrats believed that only individuals with a lot of influence would know what is in the best interest of the party. As a failsafe, the Democrats instituted super-delegates: high ranking members of the party who will cast important votes for candidates. In Wisconsin, Governor Doyle, Senators Feingold and Kohl and the heads of the Wisconsin Democratic Party all hold one of these super-delegate votes.

The Democratic Party has told its voters that their vote is desired, but not important.  I doubt when the mighty heads of the party got together to initiate this plan did they think it would ever matter.

Senator Hilary Clinton and Senator Barack Obama are locked in a stalemate for nomination.

Currently, Obama holds the lead in the delegate count by a slim margin. However, Clinton holds the majority of super-delegates. This means there is a potential for Obama to have a majority of delegates and still lose the nomination to Clinton.

Who is the real loser in this equation? The obvious answer is Senator Obama. His charisma and charm have gotten him far in this political season. More importantly, the lesser losers are the voters.

Despite casting their votes for a candidate of their choice, voters will be left disenfranchised. Many of Obama’s most fervent supporters are young, college age students, many of whom are voting for the first time in this election.

The Democrats, which has based themselves as the party of the people, needs to listen to the people. Telling voters their vote was nice but not necessary will not only create a weaker candidate but create a weaker party in the future.

Joe is a political science and international studies major who was involved with several campus activities.

Joe Eggers is a fifth year senior from Appleton, Wis. He is a political science and international studies major. He has been involved in several activities on campus, including a stint as last year's Student Senate president.