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Recognizing Bernie Sanders, Americans Elect Prioritizes Democratic Process over Desired Result

Despite its early promotion of Buddy Roemer as a presidential candidate, Roemer never took off as a popular option within the Americans Elect “tracking” system, a social media widget in which people indicate their interest on the AmericansElect.com “Candidates Page”. Yesterday morning, populist independent Senator Bernie Sanders blew by Buddy Roemer to become one of the four most tracked politicians on the Americans Elect system.

Americans Elect, which aims to run the nation’s first-ever online privatized presidential nomination in just three months, could have reacted to this development in two ways. First, it could have ignored Sanders’ accelerating performance because Sanders has an ideology that doesn’t fit the Americans Elect “vital center” rhetoric. Second, it could acknowledge Sanders performance, could recognize Sanders the way it had recognized Roemer before, and could and stop promoting Buddy Roemer now that he’s out of in the Top 4. Bernie Sanders’ image has replaced Buddy Roemer’s in a fairly prominent spot.

Americans Elect has chosen the latter approach. A year ago, I asked “Which element of the Americans Elect plan – democratic process or centrist result – has a higher priority?” This week’s action suggests that Americans Elect may be willing to respect democratic choices, even those its leaders don’t agree with. This is a positive move for an organization that has raised many doubts.

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