It looks increasingly likely that the Super Delegates to the Democratic Convention will decide the Democratic candidate. For discussions and background on this let me refer you to two articles.
The first was by Adam Nagourney and Carl Hulse in Sunday’s New York Times. The second is by Walter Shapiro and appears in today’s Salon. The Shapiro article is bit more detailed in ringing the changes on all the possibilities.
The chance that the Super Delegates, who are the apparatchiks of the party, could give the nomination to someone who had not won a majority of delegates through the primary/caucus system is a real possibility.
This would be a problem for the Democrats. Failure to support the majority candidate would be a public relations nightmare and would certainly drive away the newly energized younger voters. These newly active voters would view it as betrayal by “the old guard,” and as “beltway politics” as usual. Bad news.
On the other hand the institution of Super Delegates was intended to protect the party from being swept away by fashionable enthusiasm and guarantee a voice for sounder political judgment.
Outcome: The party will be damned if it does, and possibly damned if it doesn’t, run counter to primary results.