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On N.H. Jaunt, Fenty Stumped for Obama

By Kevin Merida
NASHUA, N.H. -- Guess who was having breakfast at the Nashua Holiday Inn this morning? None other than Washington Mayor Adrian Fenty, who was in the hotel dining room eating a small plate of scrambled eggs, bacon and sausage. He had spent part of the primary day working a couple of Nashua precincts for Barack Obama, urging voters outside the polls to cast their ballots for his candidate.

"That's bare-knuckle politics," he said.

Fenty's main purpose in the state was to testify before a New Hampshire legislative committee on behalf of D.C. voting rights. He said he is doing all he can to "come after" Republican Sens. Judd Gregg and John Sununu of New Hampshire for voting against a D.C. voting rights bill in Congress.

As for Tuesday's election results, Fenty said both Obama and Hillary Clinton had "great organizations in the state and they both had a lot of enthusiastic supporters." The difference in their margins of support came down to turnout, he reasoned. Asked if he still thought Obama would win the nomination, his momentum having been slowed, Fenty replied: "Absolutely, absolutely."

Some pundits and analysts have begun debating whether race played any part in how wrong the polls were in projecting a double-digit lead for Obama over Clinton in the days prior to the election, and whether race would be an ongoing factor as Obama moved through the Democratic primary competitions.

Fenty's view: "As much as it's humanly possible for it not to be a factor, I think the Obama campaign is the best example of that." He appeals to everyone, the mayor said. No matter your race, gender, age, ideology, Fenty said, "people just really want to see results."

By Washington Post editors  |  January 9, 2008; 1:02 PM ET
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