A subplot to all the political theater that will taking place in Selma this weekend is the notion, suggested by at least one of Barack Obama’s supporters, that Hillary Clinton latched onto the commemoration of the famous bridge crossing late in the game — well after it became clear that it could be a watermark campaign appearance for Obama.
Artur Davis, the Alabama Congressman and Obama supporter who will be introducing the Illinois Senator in Selma on Sunday morning, gave me this version of the chronology:
“I invited Senator Obama to come very soon after he announced his exploratory committee, and reiterated the invitation after he made his formal announcement. I made it to him in person and he said this is something I want to do. And then we proceeded to work staff-to-staff, to work out the logistics. So Senator Obama accepted when I first put the request to him and I believe that was right after he announced in early February. So that’s Senator Obama’s end of it.
“Now, I know we learned through various sources on Sunday night that Senator Clinton was going to be coming. And that was in the press on Monday. So those facts speak for themselves.”
(I asked the Clinton campaign how and when the invitation was extended to her and when she accepted. They haven’t yet responded.)
“There has been significant movement towards Barack Obama in the black community, which is exactly what I expected, and it will become even more pronounced. The numbers are 44-33 now. I predict those numbers will be 60-something to 20-something by the summer.”