Opinion by Matthew Dowd, ABC News Political Contributor
To get right to the point, I believe Barack Obama is going to win the Democratic nomination setting the table for a great race for the fall.
In doing the math on delegates, it looks highly likely that Obama will end up with a pledged delegate lead when all this is finished by June. Even if Hillary wins some big states along the way, Obama will score enough delegates to keep his count moving.
The super delegates (those 796 party folks who can decide on their own who to vote for and change their mind along the way) will be in an unenviable position when all is said and done. They will be getting unbelievable pressure, especially by the Clintons and their establishment backing, to "pledge" to one or the other.
But here is the deal: how does a party who has protested and screamed and yelled about counting all the votes, that the popular vote matters most, that an election was stolen by the Supreme Court in 2000, go against the votes and participation by voters in the Primary process???
The answer is: I think it’s impossible for the Democratic party establishment to go against voters in the Democratic primaries and caucuses.
It would be an untenable position for the super delegates to award the nomination to a candidate who is behind in the pledged delegate count. And if that was to happen, then the November election becomes a very difficult prospect in motivating voters who backed Obama in the nomination process. And since he seems to be the only one inspiring new voters to the polls, it is hard to dampen that enthusiasm.
So the bottom line is: Obama wins the plurality of pledged delegates, then the super delegates really have to go along with what the voters want. Otherwise, what kind of authenticity would the Democratic party have if it is not about counting the votes and it becomes the decision of the Democratic version of the Supreme Court???
Obama wins; then faces John McCain in the general election in an epic generational battle between two candidates who are calling the country to a sense of common interest and who are both about bringing the country together across party lines.
Now that would be a campaign worth the price of admission.