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Monday, August 25, 2008

ALL: Division fading, yet still apparent ahead of Democratic National Convention

11:47 AM

As the Democratic National Convention prepares to kick off with a focus on unity, the McCain campaign is on the air with an ad featuring former Hillary Clinton supporter Deb Bartoshevich, the Wisconsinite who was removed as a delegate to the Democratic Nation Convention after she refused to support to Barack Obama. In the ad, Bartoshevich says she supports McCain because of "his maverick and independent streak" and with Clinton out, "he's the one with the experience and judgment."

But Obama will get to highlight his appeal to some Republicans through former U.S. Rep. Jim Leach, R-Iowa, who is to speak at the convention this evening.

Minnesota delegates pledged to Clinton met behind closed doors last night to express their feelings over Obama's nomination, reports. Similar meetings were held for other states' delegates. According to the report, Clinton has been sending emails highlighting her support for Obama and expectations are that she will release her delegates.

An incident Saturday night between Chicago delegates suggests some tension still may exist between Obama and Clinton supporters. A Chicago alderwoman and Clinton supporter has accused Illinois state Senate President Emil Jones (known as Obama's "political godfather") of calling her an "Uncle Tom" following an exchange witnessed by several other aldermen. Witnesses say he meant it as a joke, while Jones denies he said it.

Michigan delegates are no longer in limbo, as the credentials committee voted unanimously Sunday at Obama's request to restore their voting privileges after their votes were stripped as punishment for the state moving it's primary up to an earlier date against party wishes. Florida delegates also got their privileges restored.

In Denver, Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland told the Toledo Blade that Clinton would have been his first choice for Obama's running mate, but that Biden was a good choice. Other Ohio delegates interviewed solidly praised Biden, though a few said they wold have liked an Obama-Clinton ticket.


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