An open letter to Gov. Michael Easley; members of the U.S. House of Representatives G.K. Butterfield, Bob Etheridge, Mike McIntyre, Brad Miller, David Price, Heath Shuler and Melvin Watt; North Carolina members of the Democratic National Committee and the two additional "super delegates" from North Carolina who will be selected at the state convention:Dear Superdelegates to the Democratic National Convention:The 19 of you, together with 91 "pledged" delegates, will make up North Carolina's delegation at the convention in Denver this August. Since you are an "unpledged" delegate, you are free to vote as you alone determine. I'd bet you are hearing from a lot of your friends these days telling you how they think you should vote if the time comes at the Democratic Convention for you to cast a decisive vote. Are you also getting lots of phone calls from the Clintons and Obamas asking about your children and grandchildren -- and asking, maybe begging, for a commitment?Must be fun. Or is it? Maybe all this attention has already made you a little uncomfortable. You know that whatever you decide, whomever you decide to support, you are going to make a lot of people angry.One of your problems is that there are no set rules for how you should go about making your decision. It might be tempting for you to make your decision on the basis of past friendships or implied promises for future friendship and consideration. Or maybe you will be moved by the candidate or campaign that does the best job of courting you during the next few months. Everybody could understand how that personal attention could influence you, but I think your duty requires you to go beyond simply measuring the amount of "ego gratification" that each campaign gives you.Another suggested basis for determining your vote is the "vote of the people." Various advocates and commentators suggest that you should not vote for a candidate if your vote would overturn the will of the people. All that sounds reasonable, but what do they mean? Should you simply and automatically vote for the candidate who has won the most "non-superdelegate" votes at the end of the primary and caucus process? Or should you follow the total actual votes in all the primaries and caucuses? Or should you simply and automatically vote for the candidate who gets the most votes in North Carolina's May primary? Or should you be guided by the vote in your congressional district or county? There is another group that will be tugging at you. North Carolina Democratic candidates for local and statewide office certainly hope that you will take into account the impact of each presidential candidate on local elections in November. They hope that you will support the presidential candidate with the most appeal to North Carolina voters -- the one who will help them the most (or harm them the least) in the general election.Other loyal Democrats will urge you to concentrate solely on the question of which candidate stands the best chance of winning the November election.Here is the consideration that I hope will be at the top of your list. Which candidate, if elected, would be the kind of president our country needs for the next four years? If you base your decision on your considered judgment of which candidate will be better for our country, I think your decision will be entitled to the respect of everyone -- even those who disagree with you.