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Clinton Supporter Chides Evans for Flip-Flop

Updated: 2:41 p.m.
Political activist Peter Rosenstein has sent a scathing letter to D.C. Council member Jack Evans (D-Ward 2) for announcing support for Sen. Barack Obama though he was elected to be a delegate for Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton at the Democratic National Convention in Denver.

"I just think that the problem with Evans is that just two weeks ago he had pledged to be a Clinton delegate," Rosenstein said in an interview today. "He made a pledge to be a Clinton delegate. Once you make a pledge like that, people should be able to trust you."

Obama won overwhelmingly in the District presidential primary in February, beating Clinton 3 to 1. Evans endorsed Obama on Saturday during a cookout to announce his reelection bid.

As a pledged delegate, Evans must still cast his vote in Denver for Clinton as a representative of the small percentage of District voters who supported her.

But Evans said he believed it was important for him to show his support for the candidate the District supported most.

"What I'm trying to do is bring unity to the party so we can get behind the likely nominee, which is Barack Obama," Evans said today.

Here's an excerpt from the Rosenstein's letter...


I guess knowing your record I shouldn't have been surprised at your announcement regarding Obama.

Who you support for President is your own business. Clearly your constituents didn't care. But I would assume you would now step down as a delegate as you obviously got elected just recently under false pretenses. You were elected as a pledged Hillary delegate only two weeks ago. You knew what your district vote was and you made a choice. There is something to be said for loyalty and for occasionally putting it above ones own personal interests which you seem unable to do.

By Nikita R Stewart  |  May 19, 2008; 12:44 PM ET
Categories:  2008 Presidential Race  
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Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't this what Hillary wanted back in March? She was saying that pledged delegates weren't really locked into who their districts voted for, that they could change and go against who they were pledged to.

Seems like once again Hillary is saying "I can do it, but you can't".

Great memory she has.

Posted by: Amnesia | May 19, 2008 3:42 PM | Report abuse

As a Ward 2 constituent of Jack Evans I find him an embarrassment. He is in the pocket of developers and this is just another instance where he can't be trusted to keep his word to people.

I remember him endorsing Linda Cropp for Mayor and then jumping on the stage with Fenty and pushing the Fenty family out of the way the night Fenty won the primary.

I will be a strong Obama supporter if he is the nominee but since Evans only made the pledge to support Clinton to get elected as a delegate to the convention by the State Committee two weeks ago, he should either restate his support of Clinton or resign as a delegate.

Posted by: Ward 2 constituent | May 19, 2008 4:45 PM | Report abuse

Why does this not surprise me? Jack Evans sold out his principles a long time ago in politics when he crawled into bed with every major developer in the city.

Posted by: Constituent of Jacks | May 19, 2008 5:44 PM | Report abuse

It's not true that "Evans must still cast his vote in Denver for Clinton" -- if it were, then hardly anyone would care about this little drama. Pledged delegates are bound only by their "good conscience" and their ideas of what those who elected them would want them to do. His statements this weekend indicated that he'd be voting for Obama in Denver, and that's what all the delegate-tracking sites are assuming now.

I think pledged delegates should stick with their candidate except in extraordinary circumstances, which we don't have now, or if the candidate has released their delegates to vote as they wish. Unfortunately for Clinton, I think she has done exactly that by repeatedly saying there's no such thing as a pledged delegate and that they are no more required to vote as they pledged than unpledged delegates are. I can hardly blame her delegates if they follow Clinton's own interpretation of "pledged".

Posted by: KCinDC | May 19, 2008 6:24 PM | Report abuse

Jack Evans is a political opportunist so this is no surprise. It is sad, and it shows what little loyality (not to people) but to principle our officials have. Hillary would be the nominee if people like Jack voted with their gut and not with the wind.

Posted by: Joe | May 20, 2008 7:52 AM | Report abuse

Councilman Evans has indeed backed the candidate that the District of Columbia supported, why are you all wigging out about that? He thought like so many others that Hillary was the winning candidate but now it is a possibility that she may not be. So, let's get over it and get behind a real winner BARACK OBAMA!!!!

Posted by: Ward 2 Resident | May 20, 2008 11:49 AM | Report abuse

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