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Raising Funds for Edwards, Talking About Obama

U.S. Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.) joined Prince George's County Executive Jack Johnson (D) and other local leaders at an Upper Marlboro home last night for a fundraiser for Democratic congressional candidate Donna Edwards.

Jack Johnson and Donna Edwards at her political fundraiser in Upper Marlboro. (By Hamil Harris -- The Washington Post)

While Edwards was once a political outsider, her defeat of U.S. Rep. Albert Wynn (D) in the Democratic primary in February turned her into the party standard-bearer as she approaches a June 17 special election. She faces Republican Peter James in that election, called when Wynn decided to resign from his seat.

"I think that it is really important that we all recognize that it is time to move forward," Edwards said last night. "We have a lot on our plate and we can do that separately. We all have to come together to move forward."

In addition to mending political fences, the fundraiser was also an opportunity for leaders from the county's African community to gauge their progress. Many talked about the excitement generated by Sen Barack Obama's candidacy for the Democratic presidential nomination. Edwards is an Obama supporter.

The event was hosted by Alamezie Ojiako, a Nigerian born economist and his wife Ngozi. (By Hamil Harris -- The Washington Post)

"It doesn't matter when your boat arrived in America, we are all here now in the same boat. We are all African people in America," said Alamezie Ojiaku, a Nigerian-born economist who has a business in Largo. "The Obama thing is a near miracle because this is someone who is here from Africa and now he is running for President and is accepted by blacks and whites That is wonderful."

Ngozi Ojiaku, who along with her husband hosted the event, said Obama's campaign is the dream that "Martin Luther King and others have fought for. This reminds us that we all can live that dream. All of King's efforts have not gone in vain."

Michael Ron Worthy, a county lawyer who organized the fundraiser, said, "This shows that Africans and African Americans can do things together. For Congressman Conyers to come out here and be welcomed by the county executive in an African home is historic."

Conyers, an Obama supporter, said the race is all but over for Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-N.Y.)

"Statistically, it is all over. In delegates and votes and states and campaign finances, Barack Obama, you can't even touch him," said Conyers. "The thing for us now is try to heal and realize that we have to go out and be united as Democrats because the only way the opposition can win is if they divide us."

Johnson, who endorsed Clinton, said it is a time for Democrats to unite. "We have an unbelievable race in the fall and we have to bridge our differences," he said.

-- Hamil R. Harris

By Anne Bartlett  |  May 9, 2008; 12:21 PM ET
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Glad to see JJ recognizes the error of his ways, as if he had a choice. Tuff WaPo editorial on Exum Sunday.

Posted by: Count Bobulescu | May 11, 2008 10:38 PM | Report abuse

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