SOURCE: The Forward

March 25, 2008 15:58 ET

New Forward Survey Reveals Hillary's Still Ahead With Jewish Democratic Super-Delegates

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - March 25, 2008) - According to a new survey conducted by the Forward, America's most influential Jewish newspaper, a disproportionately large share of the Democratic party's super-delegates are Jewish. Many of them have declared their support for Hillary Clinton, accounting for more than 15 percent of her current backers.

According to an article by Forward Staff Reporter Jennifer Siegel, all told, more than 70 Jewish super-delegates will make the trip to Denver this summer for the Democrats' nominating convention http://www.forward.com/articles/12998/. They account for nearly one-tenth of the party's nearly 800 so-called super-delegates, the informal term for elected and party officials whose status as delegates to the convention does not depend on state primaries and caucuses. Of those 70, currently, 36 Jewish Super-Delegates have declared for Hillary Clinton while 12 Jewish Super-Delegates are supporting Barack Obama. Another 26 are undeclared.

If the Democratic presidential primary comes down to a photo finish, these Jewish insiders could play an outsized role in anointing a nominee at the party's August convention. And it would be a history-making experience: Although Jews have long been considered a formidable voting bloc and have been overrepresented among the country's cadre of liberal activists and thinkers, they have only more recently become common as Democratic establishment insiders, with unprecedented numbers of both Jewish elected officials and party leaders.

In recent weeks, as Senator Barack Obama of Illinois has won more new super-delegates and snatched away some super-delegates who had previously committed to Clinton, Clinton's backers have worked to shore up her existing support and counter the growing perception by many in the party that if Obama maintains his current lead in the popular vote, as well as in total states and delegates won, the super-delegates should fall in line behind him.

In the current presidential primary, the support of Jewish party insiders is particularly critical for Clinton, who won contests in New York, New Jersey and California and has pledged support from a preponderance of Jewish super-delegates in the Golden State and the Northeast -- including nearly a dozen in her home state of New York.

Rachel Binah, a longtime Democratic activist from northern California, said she committed to the New York senator after some "heavy arm-twisting," which included phone calls from both Chelsea and Hillary Clinton. Binah explained her quandary a bit more bluntly.

"Anybody who had any sense wouldn't have declared, and if I were smart, I wouldn't have," Binah told the Forward. "But how can you say no to the former first lady, and potentially the first woman president, who personally talks to you for 20 minutes on the phone?"

To compile a list of Jewish super-delegates, the Forward included elected officials and DNC members known by the paper to be Jewish. The Forward's list was vetted by the Clinton and Obama campaigns and this list may omit Jewish super-delegates whose religious affiliation is not widely known.

ABOUT THE FORWARD (www.forward.com): The Forward is widely regarded as American Jewry's essential newspaper of record. Published weekly since 1990, the Forward is committed to rigorous reporting and balanced, thoughtful commentary on news, politics and culture in the Jewish world. Editorial Director J.J. Goldberg, a veteran journalist and author, and his staff have enhanced the paper's reputation for incisive, hard-hitting reportage with a populist, progressive spirit that was the paper's hallmark in its early days. Headquartered in New York, the newspaper is owned by the Forward Association, Inc., a 501(c) (4) corporation. It is published on Fridays and is available on newsstands nationwide as well as by subscription.

LIST OF DELEGATES FOLLOWS:

JEWISH SUPERDELEGATES


Clinton:
36 Jewish
246 Total

Patti Higgins (AK - Chairwoman of Alaska Democratic Party)
Rachel Binah (CA - DNC)
Maria Echeveste (CA - DNC)
Diane Feinstein (CA)
Jane Harman (CA)
Brad Sherman (CA)
Rosalind Wyman (CA -DNC)
Ellen Camhi (CT - DNC)
Debbie Wasserman-Schultz (FL)
Debra DeLee (MA DNC chair)
Barney Frank (MA)
Steve Grossman (MA - DNC)
Diane Saxe (MA - Clinton)
Nancy Kopp (MD - DNC)
Carol Pensky (MD - DNC)
Sander Levin (MI)
Anita Freedman (NH - DNC)
June Fischer (NJ - DNC)
Shelley Berkley (NV)
Gary Ackerman (NY)
Eliot Engel (NY)
Emily Giske (NY - DNC)
Steve Israel (NY)
Nita Lowey (NY)
Jerrold Nadler (NY)
Chuck Schumer (NY - Sen)
Sheldon Silver (NY)
Anthony Weiner (NY)
Randi Weingarten (NY - DNC)
Robert Zimmerman (NY - DNC)
Marcel Groen (PA - DNC)
Gov. Ed Rendell (PA)
Allyson Schwartz (PA)
Mark Weiner (RI - DNC)
Eric Kleinfeld (DC - DNC)
Robert Bell (Democrats Abroad - DNC)


Obama:
12 Jewish
199.5 Total

Eric Garcetti (CA)
Adam Schiff (CA)
Robert Wexler (FL)
Jan Schakowsky (IL)
John Yarmuth (KY)
Paul Hodes (NH)
Steve Rothman (NJ)
Steve Cohen (TN)
Russ Feingold (WI - Sen)
Paul Strauss (DC - DNC)
Allan Katz (FL - DNC)
Alan Solomont (MA - DNC)


Jewish Undeclared: 26
349.5 Total

Gabrielle Giffords (AZ)
Howard Berman (CA)
Barbara Boxer (CA)
Henry Waxman (CA)
Bob Filner (CA)
Susan Davis (CA)
Mitchell Ceasar (FL - DNC)
Diane Glasser (FL - DNC)
Ron Klein (FL)
Andrew Tobias (FL - DNC)
Rahm Emanuel (IL)
Carol Ronen (IL DNC)
Ben Cardin (MD - Sen)
Susan Turbull (MD - DNC)
Carl Levin (MI - Sen)
Richard Wiener (MI - DNC)
Muriel Offerman (NC-DNC)
Frank Lautenberg (NJ - Sen)
Sam Lieberman (NV - DNC)
Irene Stein (NY - DNC)
Ron Wyden (OR - Sen)
Sophie Masloff (PA - DNC)
Bob Strauss (TX)
Herb Kohl (WI)
Alice Travis Germond (WV - DNC)
Larry Cohen (DC - DNC)

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