Elections

There are Sanders holdouts in Mississippi delegation

The Mississippi delegation votes during the second day of the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia Tuesday, July 26, 2016.
The Mississippi delegation votes during the second day of the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia Tuesday, July 26, 2016. AP

On Tuesday morning, the Mississippi delegation at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia met for its daily breakfast meeting before heading to the Pennsylvania Convention Center to attend various caucus meetings.

The morning was a little bit different than it was on the first day of convention.

Delegates did not have the luxury they had Monday to sleep in and report for breakfast between 7:30 and 9:30 a.m. They were told to be there promptly at 7:30, if not earlier. The reason was to vote for the Democratic nominee for November’s presidential election.

The process was organized and not intricate. The official voting sheets for the 2016 convention had a list of all delegates in one column, a column for their signature and three more columns, each with a box for a candidate they could check off to vote for. The three options were Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders and other.

The room was full of state delegates who had pledged their support to Clinton. However, the few Bernie Sanders delegates made themselves very visible.

Sanders delegate Luke Lundemo of the 3rd Congressional District in Mississippi voted while wearing his Sanders hat and a button labeled “Bernie y’all” pinned on his shirt. He said he was a little worried going in to vote, fearing someone could make a mistake.

“I was a little concerned that somebody may not be paying attention and select the first column when our Bernie delegation should be picking something in the second column,” he said.

The mood was different for Clinton delegate Joy Williams, who wore a red dress with Clinton buttons pinned across her chest.

“It’s a feeling of coming full circle,” said Williams, also of the 3rd Congressional District, who is attending her second convention. “I’m looking forward to tonight when we get to gavel in and give our vote and see the accumulation of all the votes. It’s really thrilling.”

When asked how confident she was about Clinton getting the nomination later Tuesday, she said, “I am very confident.”

Despite the support Mississippi Democrats have for Clinton, Lundemo said he will stay loyal to the political revolution Sanders started. When it comes to Sanders’ chances of snagging enough votes and becoming the nominee, he said: “Unless Hillary ends up in jail today or something, I don’t think that’s going to happen. I think Hillary will be the nominee.”

Even if Clinton gets the nomination, Lundemo already knows who he is voting for come the general election and their names aren’t Clinton nor Trump.

“Jill Stein’s Green Party agenda is very close to the political revolution,” he said, “so in Mississippi, I will be voting for Jill Stein.”

Later Tuesday afternoon, delegates will gather at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia to watch the roll call as votes come in to select the Democratic nominee to take on Republican nominee Donald Trump.

Chris Abruzzo, a student at Temple University, is covering the Democratic National Convention for the Sun Herald.

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