I’ve had a busy day while trying to grasp what happened yesterday at the Nevada state Democratic convention. Every source I consult is telling a different story. All I know for certain is that the Sanders contingent believe they were steamrollered, and the Clinton people think Sanders supporters are barbarians with bad table manners.
A little background — the state convention is where the Nevada the delegation to the DNC convention is finalized. You might remember that Clinton won the Nevada caucuses back in February, giving her 20 delegates and Sanders 15 delegates. Then in April, Sanders’s supporters took advantage of Clinton delegate no shows at the Clark County convention to increase the number of Sanders supporters Clark County (home of Las Vegas) sent to the state convention, where 12 more delegates would be chosen. This potentially made it possible to flip the state from Clinton to Sanders.
Well, that didn’t happen. Somehow, 56 Sanders delegates (enough to have changed the final vote) to the state convention were stripped of their delegate status. Various reasons were given, the most common being that they couldn’t prove they had registered as Democrats or that they even lived in Nevada. But it’s not clear how those determinations were made. I believe (again, news stories are not consistent on this) that Clinton got seven more delegates and Sanders five.
What went wrong?
Convention Credential Committee Co-Chair Leslie Sexton said 64 Sanders delegates — almost double Sanders’ eventual 33 delegate shortfall — were disqualified for various reasons and not given the opportunity to appeal, The Hill reported.
Sexton initially said she was not allowed to give a report about Sanders’ delegates — for an unspecified reason — but she eventually presented her findings once chants of “recount” and “let her speak” broke out, The Hill reported.
“Contrary to procedures and precedents set by the committee, nearly none of the 64 people were presented with the opportunity to be heard by the committee or to demonstrate that they are registered Democrats,” Sexton said.
“Sanders supporters have accused state party leaders of rigging the process against them, and they objected to procedural votes to approve the rules of the event,” it says here. Sanders people booed Sen. Barbara Boxer when she called for “unity,” and the senator didn’t take it well. Eventually the chair, Roberta Lange, called for an adjournment; according to several accounts she then seconded herself and banged the event to a close. State troopers immediately took over to clear people out of the hall.
This account of events at Real Clear Politics, with lots of videos, is especially damning.
Since I wasn’t there, and there are so many conflicting accountsÂ I can’t say who responsible for things getting out of control, but the end result is a lot of anger. Sanders supporters are increasingly certain the entire nominating process has been rigged for Clinton (possibly because it has) and they are increasingly hostile to the Democratic Party.
Way to go, folks.