Saturday, January 12, 2008

Obama Gets Nelson Endorsement

Centrist Senator Ben Nelson of Nebraska has endorsed Barack Obama, National Journal's Hotline on Call reports.

In a statement released by the Obama campaign, Nelson said of his colleague:

"Those of us on both sides of the aisle who have made it our purpose to set aside partisanship to address some of the important issues of the day want a president that will join the effort, not foil it. Barack Obama, to me, represents the best hope for our own political reconciliation and a future where the cogs of government are working smoothly for progress instead of being gummed up by partisanship. Barack Obama will be the strongest candidate in the heartland, because he puts solutions and consensus first and he inspires great crossover appeal among Republicans and independents."

Nelson's post-New Hampshire endorsement of Obama follows those of Arizona Governor Janet Napolitano, South Dakota Senator Tim Johnson, and 2004 Democratic presidential nominee Senator John Kerry.

Obama's campaign also received praise this week from an unlikely source: South Carolina's Republican Governor Mark Sanford, who published an essay in The State on Friday noting the importance of Obama's candidacy to the South:

"Sen. Obama is not running for president on the basis of his race, and no one should cast their ballot for or against him on that basis. Nonetheless, what is happening in the initial success of his candidacy should not escape us. Within many of our own lifetimes, a man who looked like Barack Obama had a difficult time even using the public restrooms in our state. What is happening may well say a lot about America, and I do think as an early primary state we should earnestly shoulder our responsibility in determining how this part of history is ultimately written."

The wide range of support Obama is attracting from across the political spectrum is a strong testament to the great and powerful reservoir of positive, unifying energy for hope and change that he has made the central theme of his campaign.


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