According to our sources, Obama’s been making calls on the Hill this week (the place where more undeclared superdelegates live than any other in the country) in an attempt to gather the number he needs, probably around 45 supers in order to declare Tuesday night or Wednesday morning. The campaign is hoarding commitments from undeclared superdelegates to hit these magic numbers once the nominating contests come to a close on June 3. The actual choreography, however, hasn’t been agreed to yet; it depends on what happens at Saturday’s DNC meeting. Here’s one scenario: Obama announces enough supers on Monday June 2 to bring him within 10 delegates of the new magic number. Then on Tuesday evening, just as the polls close in Montana, Obama thanks that state for putting him over the top as the small state is one the Obama camp is hoping to put in play for the fall.
Everyone understands what they mean by “the new magic number,” yes? 2,025 is the current number to clinch; Obama’s already within 50 delegates of that. If the full Florida and Michigan delegations are seated in accordance with Her Majesty’s wishes, the magic number will bump up to 2,210. If, per the compromise plans and legal opinions being circulated, only half the delegates are seated, the number will (presumably) be 2,128 or thereabouts. It all depends on what happens at the Rules and Bylaws Committee meeting on Saturday, although if Hillary’s not satisfied with the outcome, she could conceivably push on to the convention and try to get the full delegations seated via a ruling from the Credentials Committee (which convenes on the first day). The secret stash is designed to put him over the 2,025 mark or, if the magic number gets bumped up this weekend, to propel him to an even wider overall delegate lead, which will come in handy for spin purposes if, as expected, she blows him out in Puerto Rico this weekend.
Exit question: She’s not actually going to rock on to the Credentials Committee, is she? RCP gives her a momentary lead in the popular vote, but that’s only if you credit Obama with zero votes from Michigan. (Remember, Hillary was the only candidate on the ballot there; there were 238,000+ votes for “uncommitted.”) If you attribute the “uncommitted” votes to him plus the estimates in the four caucus states that don’t officially count votes, then he’s ahead in the popular vote by roughly 180,000, a margin that Puerto Rico could wipe out. So why not rock on? Meanwhile, NBC notes that even if Michigan’s delegates are ultimately seated, DNC rules may not allow the party to assign those “uncommitted” delegates to Obama — although given the fact that any delegate, pledged or super, can vote however they want, you have to expect that a vast majority will simply for Barry O of their own volition. Long story short, she’s not going to win but if Puerto Rico comes through she might conceivably have an argument to make at the convention if she wants to.
Update: Make that two arguments.