Hillary Clinton became the presumptive Democratic nominee in a surprise development on Monday, making her the first woman ever to win a major party’s presidential nomination one day before she was expected to cross the threshold.My first thought was that the Clinton campaign, or the Democratic establishment, had been in contact with superdelegates who planned to vote for Clinton but hadn't publicly communicated that preference, and had encouraged them to come forward to the media. Why? I thought perhaps because private polls showed Clinton about to lose California, so the campaign (or the party) wanted a victory story as soon as possible. That's more or less what Billmon, a Sanders backer, seems to believe -- that the evil neoliberal Democra-media-fat-cat complex did this to shut Sanders down prematurely.
... the announcement -- first made by the Associated Press, and quickly confirmed by NBC and ABC -- was not expected until Tuesday night, when results from six states, including California and New Jersey, come in. Clinton's campaign had prepared a major victory rally in Brooklyn for Tuesday night, exactly eight years to the day after she conceded the 2008 race to then-Sen. Barack Obama.
... [Bernie] Sanders, long suspicious of superdelegates' role in the process, refused to concede on Monday night. His communications director Michael Briggs decried the media's "rush to judgment," signaling Sanders' intention to fight on.
... It was indeed superdelegates that put Clinton over the top -- the AP spent the day surveying these party insiders and counted those who said they were "unequivocally" for Clinton, according to the news agency’s U.S. political editor, David Scott.
MSM couldn't wait, decided to hold coronation ceremony early -- lest CA voters take a dump in Her Majesty's lap. pic.twitter.com/cgTqF1p1IH— Billmon (@billmon1) June 7, 2016
But that makes no sense. This makes an embarrassing Clinton loss in California even more likely. Sandersites aren't going to believe the race is over, so now they're even more motivated to turn out. Clinton voters, realizing it's over, are now less motivated to turn out. I can't believe the Clinton campaign or the Democratic establishment wanted that, all for a one-day jump on the inevitable. Why would the Clintonites or the Democrats want to set a fresh round of complaints about the alleged "rigging" of the system from the Sanders camp?
It's just another awkward moment for a campaign that's had too many of them. This particular awkwardness should last only a day, after which the president, vice president, and others will come off the sidelines in a show of unity around Clinton. (Nancy Pelosi just endorsed Clinton.) That'll be good. But this was a mess.