Obama Surrogates Says It’s Locked Up, Kerry Blames Rush for Indiana

It’s all but over, according to the Obama campaign. Sign Up For Our Daily Newsletter Sign Up Thank you for

It’s all but over, according to the Obama campaign.

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"We can see the finish line," said Obama campaign manager David Plouffe on a conference call just now. Plouffe said the net of last night’s primaries was 13 delegates in the candidate’s favor, making Obama’s advantage "the biggest it has been in the entire race." Plouffe said that the campaign had also been "making great progress in the superdelegate world."

He then introduced the campaign’s top supporters, each carrying a nail to hammer into Clinton’s coffin.

John Kerry said, "In my judgment, last night, Barack Obama took a giant and decisive step towards the nomination." He added, "He clearly did more than he had to and she did not achieve what she had to."  

He argued that Obama scored impressive results "despite the toughest weeks of his campaign and the most thorough testing that could be imagined,"  and said, "If it hadn’t been for Republicans taking Democratic ballots," at the bidding of Rush Limbaugh he would have won Indiana too. "There is no masquerade now."

claire mccaskill went next, saying Obama "improved with Catholic voters, he improved with white women and importantly, he improved with union households."

Janet Napolitano, Governor of Arizona, said "It’s time for superdelegates to bring this race to a close and announce their preferences." Deval Patrick talked about Obama’s resilience and Amy Klobuchar, senator of Minnesota, said, "He did well last night precisely because of his connecting with middle-class people." She added, "The heart of the heartland is with Senator Obama."

The first question was perhaps most telling. “If and when” Hillary drops out, asked a reporter, how would they reach out to Clinton’s voters who are reticent about backing Obama.

Kerry said it wouldn’t be a problem, that Democrats would rally around the nominee and that Obama’s nomination was "secured." But responding to a question about why none of the high-powered surrogates had explicitly called for Clinton to drop out, McCaskill said, "There is sincere respect for Sentaor Clinton," and that "It would be awkward and wrong for us" to call on her to drop out. It is Clinton’s decision alone, she said.

Obama Surrogates Says It’s Locked Up, Kerry Blames Rush for Indiana