Democrats Join to Tout Obama, Bash McCain
By Ben Pershing
With a long and divisive primary fight finally behind them, the bulk of the national Democratic leadership joined forces today to tout the candidacy of Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) and to bash Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) -- in noticeably strong terms. At the same time, Obama took a key step toward reaching out to Clinton supporters and raising money for his party's congressional candidates.
Obama sent out an e-mail solicitation today on behalf of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee asking for unity -- and cash. "Hillary Clinton was very gracious in offering her support to my campaign over the weekend," Obama wrote. "I admire her and her supporters for their hard work, courage, and tenacity. And I'm grateful for everything they've done to build our party. But the battle ahead of us will be unlike anything we've ever faced, and it's going to demand unprecedented focus and resources. We need to unite as Democrats, not just to defeat John McCain in the general election, but also to support Democratic candidates at every level of office in every part of the country."
Meanwhile, party leaders lined up three-deep behind the podium in a packed room at Democratic National Committee headquarters on Capitol Hill this afternoon, with DNC Chairman Howard Dean, Speaker Nancy Pelosi (Calif.) and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (Nev.) taking top billing along with West Virginia Gov. Joe Manchin, the chairman of the Democratic Governors Association. Dean began with an expression of gratitude toward Clinton for her contributions to the party, and he added a dollop of media criticism.
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