In the last three days, seven Democratic superdelegates have decided to skip out on the upcoming DNC National Convention in Charlotte, where President Barack Obama will be renominated as the Democratic nominee for President.
On Tuesday, it was announced that West Virginia superdelegates to the DNC National Convention Gov. Joe Earl Ray Tomblin, Sen. Joe Manchin, and Rep. Nick Joe Rahall (WV-3) would be foregoing the convention, a direct repudiation of President Obama. If you recall, President Obama encountered a difficult primary in West Virginia, losing 40% of the vote to Keith Judd, who’s currently known as Inmate No. 11593-051 at the Federal Correctional Institution in Texarkana, Texas.
Gov. Tomblin’s campaign spokesman, Chris Stadelman, said on behalf of the West Virginia Governor, “he has serious problems with both Governor Romney and President Obama. The governor feels that his time is best spent working in West Virginia to move our state forward instead of attending a four-day political rally in North Carolina.”
Sen. Manchin also distanced himself from the President, ”I intend to spend this fall focused on the people of West Virginia, whether that’s representing them in my official U.S. Senate duties or here at home, where I can hear about their concerns and ideas to solve the problems of this great nation,” he said. ”I will remain focused on bringing people together for the next generation, not the next election.”
Rep. Rahall has yet to release a statement, but “Obama’s liberal policies and his war on coal have cost [West Virginia] thousands of jobs,” West Virginia gubernatorial challenger Bill Maloney said. “I’m not afraid to say it: Four more years of Barack Obama would be devastating to [our] families.”
Yesterday, two more delegates, New York Democratic Reps. Kathy Hochul (NY-26) and Bill Owens (NY-23), indicated they would also be missing the convention. Hochul blamed a busy schedule, while Rep. Owens said “I guarantee that my time will be better spent meeting the farmers, small businesses owners and other people who put me here.”
Pennsylvania Rep. Mark Critz (PA-12) also will not be heading to to the DNC convention, hoping to drive his jobs message back home, “I will not be heading to Charlotte for the national convention because I believe it is much more important to spend my time in western Pennsylvania listening to the people about how we can create jobs for the region. Since I was elected, my focus has been on creating jobs for people here rather than focusing on the agendas of the political parties in Washington and that will remain the case as long as I am serving in Congress.”
Finally, today it was announced that Utah Rep. Jim Matheson (UT-2) will not be attending to Charlotte to vote for Obama’s renomination for the office of President, “I’ll be spending my time this summer and fall doing my job in Congress and visiting with and listening to people in Utah.”
President Obama carried Pennsylvania and New York in 2008 while losing West Virginia and Utah. Utah and West Virginia are not in play for Obama, but he is currently leading by six points in Pennsylvania after carrying it by ten points in 2008. However, Pennsylvania voters are more confident in Mitt Romney to turn the economy around by a margin of 49-41. Many are speculating Pennsylvania will be a toss-up for the upcoming November election.
With many Democratic Representatives, Senators, and Governors experiencing tough re-election campaigns due to unemployment hovering around 8.2% and expected to stay around that level for the next six months, the increasing unpopularity of Obamacare, and the deficit increasing by $5 trillion dollars in Obama’s first term, it’s expected that more superdelegates, who aren’t bound to vote for Obama’s renomination, will forgo the convention to distance themselves from the President.