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Bernie Sanders Picks Up 3 More Vermont Superdelegates

Charlie Neibergall
Sen. Bernie Sanders, shown here at a campaign rally in Dearborn, Mich., on March 7, can add three more notches to his delegate count after Tuesday afternoon.

Three of Vermont’s 10 superdelegates announced Tuesday that they’ll vote for Sen. Bernie Sanders at the Democratic Party’s nominating convention this July. 
One of those superdelegates, Secretary of State Jim Condos, says Sanders’ showing in the Vermont primary cemented his decision to pledge for the Vermont senator.

“It’s unprecedented for a candidate to win their own state by such an immense margin,” Condos said at a press conference in the Statehouse early Tuesday afternoon. “In a stunning show of support, Bernie also won every single town in the state.”

Essex Rep. Tim Jerman and Dottie Deans, the chairwoman of the Vermont Democratic Party, also said Tuesday that their superdelegate votes will go to Sanders. And Jerman, a member of the Democratic National Committee, says he plans to push for reforms to the controversial superdelegate system.

“I think we have to look at the delegate selection process the way it is,” Jerman said Tuesday. “There were good reasons for the rules as they are, but I think the popular perception is there’s a group of establishment people that are somehow putting their hand on the scale, and I think that’s an unfortunate perception.”

Many Sanders supporters decried the decision of several Vermont superdelegates to throw their support behind Hillary Clinton, no matter the outcome of last week’s presidential primary.

Credit Peter Hirschfeld / VPR
Secretary of State Jim Condos says Sanders' showing in the Vermont primary cemented his decision to pledge for the Vermont senator.

Vermont has 26 delegates in all, 10 of which come from superdelegates. Four of those superdelegates, including Gov. Peter Shumlin and Sen. Patrick Leahy, have said they’ll cast their votes for Hillary Clinton. 

Since Clinton failed to get 15 percent of the Democratic vote last week – the threshold needed to be eligible for a portion of the 16 at-large delegates – all the non-superdelegate votes will go to Sanders. 

Jerman noted that the end result – a 22-to-4 delegate count in Sanders’ favor – is roughly equal to the proportion of the popular vote last week.

Jerman says he isn’t sure precisely how the system should be changed, but that he’ll “work to promote change at the national level.”

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