An Issue of Legitimacy and Democracy

There have been some who have tried to read my comments last week on CNBC'sas stepping back from my support of Sen. Clinton. Nothing could be further from the truth.
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There have been some who have tried to read my comments last week on CNBC's SquawkBox as stepping back from my support of Senator Clinton. Nothing could be further from the truth.

I personally know, respect and like both Democratic candidates. Both are qualified. Both will be an agent of change from years of profligate spending on a misguided war. Both will address the discontent that results from long unmet needs and the mismanagement of our nation's economic affairs.

That said, I truly believe Senator Clinton is the most qualified and prepared to be our next president. I unequivocally support her candidacy.

My point on SquawkBox was and remains that superdelegates should consider a number of factors in their final decision, particularly after the primaries and caucuses have run their course.

Clearly, the cumulative delegate totals must be considered. Absolutely, the cumulative popular vote is important. And, a practical analysis of electability and the electoral map must be weighed.

For me, the most important of those factors is the popular vote since Democrats have rightfully and passionately long argued that every vote should be counted. Practically, that popular vote should include participation of the fourth and eighth largest states in the nation. Most Democrats agree that ignoring the voices of Florida and Michigan is a mistake and threatens to impact the outcome of the fall elections.

Like many, I fear that not considering the wishes of millions of Democratic voters in those states will taint the attitude of voters everywhere about our ultimate nominee. Early polling in Florida has already indicated as much.

Without a "do over" for those states, the short-term gain could well come with long-term pain for our nominee, the party and the nation.

The party should be responsible and raise funds for a primary "do-over" in a way that doesn't give the competitive edge to one candidate over the other.

I believe, as I think most Democrats do, that the popular vote is the most democratic way to select a candidate. In fact, I recently signed legislation in New Jersey that joins the state in a compact to choose a president by direct popular vote.

When we listen to all of the people in our party, we end up choosing the person the entire party can support.

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