The Former First Lady's Threat to Take Her Fight Over Disputed Michigan and Florida Delegates to the Floor of the Denver Convention Raises Suspicions that Clinton Is Putting Personal Ambition Ahead of the Good of the Democratic Party -- and Risking Her Own Political Future
NOTE TO READERS: Due to the Memorial Day holiday on Monday, May 26, the next edition of The 'Skeeter Bites Report will be published on Wednesday, May 28. As we Americans celebrate this long holiday weekend, please remember on Monday to pause to honor the men and women who gave their lives in service to our country.
By Skeeter Sanders
Hillary Rodham Clinton is well known for being a tenacious campaigner. But her comments and her actions since Tuesday's primaries in Kentucky and Oregon are sending alarming red flags among Democrats that the former first lady's campaign is transforming itself from a chase for the Democratic nomination into a full-scale "Stop Obama" movement.
It's a movement that -- despite repeated promises by both candidates to unify the party after the nomination contest is over -- threatens to sow lasting bitterness and rancor among the Democratic Party's rank and file. And that, in turn, could put Clinton's own political future at serious risk.
Clinton warned Wednesday that she's prepared to take her fight to seat disputed Florida and Michigan delegates to the convention floor if the two states want to go that far. In an interview with The Associated Press, Clinton was asked whether she would support the states if they continue the fight.
The presidential candidate said Wednesday, "Yes I will. I will, because I feel very strongly about this."
Clinton is calling for delegates from both states to be seated at the convention based on the primaries. Both states were stripped of their delegates because they voted early, violating national party rules. Clinton won both states; her arch-rival Barack Obama's name wasn't on the Michigan ballot.
Now badly trailing Obama among both pledged delegates and superdelegates -- as well as in the popular vote and number of states won -- Clinton's only hope of wresting the Democratic nomination away from Obama is to employ a scorched-earth strategy to force the party to allow Florida and Michigan delegates to be seated at the convention.
Party Officials Say Obama Has Begun Search for VP Running Mate
In a fresh sign that the general election campaign against GOP nominee-elect John McCain is well under way and his primary race against Clinton is basically over, Obama has begun a search for a vice-presidential running mate, the AP reported Thursday.
Obama has asked former Fannie Mae chief executive Jim Johnson to begin vetting potential VP picks, according to the news service, citing unnamed Democratic Party officials. Johnson did the same job for Democratic nominees John Kerry in 2004 and Walter Mondale in 1984.