A few hours after Bill Clinton made an appearance in Camden County to campaign for his wife, two of Obama’s most prominent supporters – one from the north and one from the south – held a conference call to extol the virtues of their chosen candidate.
Newark Mayor Cory Booker – an early Obama backer—did not attend the Clinton rally today, where the former president toned down the attacks on his candidate that many speculate hurt his wife in South Carolina.
And Obama campaign spokeswoman Shannon Gilson said that, beginning tomorrow, the campaign will begin running a television spot in the New York and Philadelphia markets.
The ad features Caroline Kennedy comparing Obama to her father, former President John F. Kennedy.
Booker stopped short of condemning Bill Clinton’s comparison a few days ago between Obama’s win in South Carolina with Jesse Jackson’s primary victories there in 1984 and 1988, but said that it was meant to downplay the seriousness of the victory.
“It’s not a pulling of the race card unnecessarily, but I think it’s trying to compare Barack Obama to another candidate whose campaign did not emerge in victory,” said Booker. “I think Bill Clinton is obviously trying to go out there and say the things that are more attacking in tone, leaving Hillary Clinton to be above all that.”
Had Booker, who’s ill, attended the rally, he may have been pleased to see that Clinton had significantly altered his tone away from attacks on Obama.
State Sen. John Adler said that Obama’s victory in South Carolina coudn’t be downplayed as merely appealing to black voters.
“It strikes me that South Carolina is not entirely the same demographically as Iowa,” said Adler. “And yet Barack Obama did very well in Iowa, did very well in South Carolina. We’ve had four states so far and the bigger two have gone for Barack Obama.”
Although the Clinton rally was on Adler’s home turf, he didn’t attend either.
“I’m sure they’re all enormously disappointed I wasn’t there, but I’m sure they managed to get by with my absence,” he said when reached after the conference call.