Washington Democrats wrapped up the final day of their state convention Sunday, selecting the final 34 national delegates and eight alternates to the Democratic National Convention. Sixty-seven delegates were previously elected at the party’s May congressional caucuses.
The Associated Press reports that the selection of delegates is a formality. Presidential candidates are awarded delegates proportional to their finish at the Democratic caucuses in March. Bernie Sanders, who won the March caucuses, will have 74 delegates from Washington state at the national convention. Hillary Clinton, the presumptive nominee, will have 27.
A majority of the state’s 17 superdelegates have publicly backed Hillary Clinton including Gov. Jay Inslee, U.S. Sens. Maria Cantwell and Patty Murray, and U.S. Reps. Jim McDermott, Suzan DelBene, Rick Larsen, Adam Smith, Denny Heck and Derek Kilmer.
Kilmer spoke to Grays Harbor Democrats at the Polish Hall in Aberdeen last month. When asked if he would support Bernie Sanders, the question itself garnered a round of applause, Kilmer replied, “I have a lot of respect for both of our candidates, but for me; I’m going to vote for the Democrat. I don’t want to see Donald Trump be our president.”
After another round of applause, Kilmer continued, “Senator Sanders I have a lot of respect for, he’s given rise to a lot of issues that I care a lot about. I think many of you know that I endorsed Secretary Clinton two minutes into her candidacy. I was one of the people encouraging her to run.”
Kilmer said he didn’t agree with the superdelegate process, “To the woman who’s giving her thumbs down; I agree with you. I don’t think there should be superdelegates in the process either, and thank you for your thumbs up.”
He then sourced overall numbers when he told a packed Polish Hall, “As we sit her today, Hillary Clinton has a pretty sizable lead among the pledged delegates, but I don’t get to cast my vote until July 27th, and if you see a swing in the pledged delegates then we can revisit that conversation.” No swing needed for local Democrats, during Washington’s Democratic Caucuses in March Sanders won in all 39 counties with more than twice the pledges that Clinton received, except in Garfield County where only 5 delegates pledged: 3 for Sanders, 2 for Clinton.
Clinton was named the presumptive nominee is early May by the Associated Press, based on uncounted votes from the superdelegates.
A petition on the website MoveOn.org demanding the superdelegates “let the voters decide,” has gathered over 185-thousand signatures.