From The Caucus, the political blog of the New York Times.
March 26, 2008, 7:26 pm
Obama Warms to Wrapping Up Contest
ABOARD THE OBAMA CAMPAIGN PLANE – Senator Barack Obama this evening called Tennessee Gov. Phil Bredesen’s proposal of resolving the Democratic nomination contest in June “a good one” – although Mr. Obama seemed to be endorsing a June wrap-up more than the governor’s specific plan to let superdelegates caucus to choose either Mr. Obama or Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton.
“I think giving whoever the nominee is two or three months to pivot into the general election would be extremely helpful, instead of having this drag up to the convention,” Mr. Obama told reporters as he flew from Greensboro, N.C., to New York City.
Mr. Obama holds a combined delegate lead over Mrs. Clinton and has been adding more superdelegates to his column at a faster clip than she has. Mrs. Clinton, meanwhile, has indicated that she is willing to slug it out for the nomination through the summer, and is counting on some sort of Obama collapse or other game-changing development to drive superdelegates into her camp.
In response to other questions, Mr. Obama said that he had no beef with Bill Clinton’s comments today that the Obama and Clinton camps should “just saddle up and have an argument.” But he added that one of his goals in politics was still “to see if we can change the tenor a little bit so it’s more productive.” Mr. Obama said he agreed with the thrust of Mr. Clinton’s point about the rough-and-tumble of politics, saying it was “a contact sport,” though he said he sensed it would be a problem to go too far.
“In Chicago, Harold Washington once said ‘politics ain’t tiddleewinks,’ ” Mr. Obama said, referring to that city’s former mayor. “And I believe President Clinton was the one who decried ‘the politics of personal destruction.’ ”
“There’s a line that can be crossed where you stop focusing on the American people’s business and it just becomes about sport.” Then he added, “I’m proud of how we’ve generally conducted ourselves in this campaign – there are some points where I haven’t been proud.”
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