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Obama Picks Up Bonior Endorsement

Then Rep. David Bonior (D-Mich.), pictured in 2001. (Associated Press)

By Alec MacGillis
Add to the Democratic Party veterans closing ranks around Barack Obama Michigan's David Bonior, whose endorsement today carries a little extra symbolic weight.

Bonior, who served 26 years in Congress, was most recently the manager of John Edwards's presidential campaign. While his endorsement should not necessarily be taken as a clue to the allegiance of Edwards, who has maintained a studied neutrality since dropping out, it does add to a growing list of former Edwards hands who have lined up behind Obama.

More generally, Bonior's backing helps shore up Obama in what has emerged as one of his weakest areas, his support among blue-collar white voters. Bonior was one of organized labor's staunchest allies in Congress and now teaches labor studies at Wayne State University in Detroit. He is particularly close with the United Auto Workers, which is notable given Obama's much-touted criticism of the auto industry's reluctance to improve fuel efficiency. The union did not endorse any candidate in the Democratic primary.

"Because Barack Obama continues to run a positive campaign that focuses on the issues that matter to ordinary Americans, he has won a commanding lead in this race, and I believe he can and will defeat John McCain in November," Bonior said in a a statement today. "Now is the time to unite behind Barack Obama so we can end business as usual in Washington and fulfill our moral obligation to America's hardworking families."

By Web Politics Editor  |  May 8, 2008; 2:38 PM ET
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