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Friday, February 8, 2008

Potomac Primaries: Clinton and Obama In Maryland On Monday

Potomac Primaries in Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C.

Virginia’s Democratic primary will award 101 delegates, 99 are at stake in Maryland and 37 in D.C. For the Republicans, 63 delegates are at stake in Virginia, 37 in Maryland and 19 in D.C.

WTOP - Reports Democratic presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama planned stops in Maryland a day before the state's primary vote. Obama scheduled a rally Monday at the University of Maryland's Cole Field House in College Park, a day before Maryland voters head to the polls. Clinton's campaign also said she will campaign in the state Monday, without releasing details of any scheduled appearance. The campaigns are headed to the region for the Feb. 12 Potomac Primaries in Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C.

Barack Obama and Hillary Rodham Clinton

Meanwhile WaPo's Raw Fisher reports D.C. Council member Marion Barry will endorse Barack Obama for president later this week. The former Washington mayor told me he has selected Obama because "he's a fresh start, a new direction. I listened to him Sunday morning on C-SPAN and it was like a breath of fresh air."

Barry, who remains popular in his Southeast Washington ward and in neighborhoods where longtime residents feel as if the city they grew up in is changing without them, said he was an early supporter of Bill Clinton back in 1992 and that he was "close to endorsing Hillary this time." But as Barry has watched the campaign, he has concluded that Sen. Clinton represents older and less flexible forces in the Democratic party.

Barry expects that Obama will win in Tuesday's D.C. primary, but cautioned that the contest will be closer than might be expected based on a purely racial reading of the electorate.

Mayor Adrian Fenty has endorsed Obama as well, as have council members Muriel Bowser (Ward 4), Tommy Wells (Ward 6) and Yvette Alexander (Ward 7.) Council members Jim Graham (Ward 1), Jack Evans (Ward 2) and Mary Cheh (Ward 3) have lined up behind Hillary Clinton.

The Potomac Primaries are so big, even the Georgetown Hoya is covering it.

The Georgetown Hoya reports, Many voters in Virginia are so anxious to cast their votes that they tried to do so, a week early. According to the Associated Press, more than 400 voters called the Virginia State Board of Elections on Tuesday, Feb. 5, wondering why their polling locations were closed, only to be informed that the primary was the following Tuesday. Looks like Super Tuesday Turnout Mean More Voters in Va.

WaPo reports Both Billary and Obama boasts strong ties to the state's leading Democrats.

Obama is backed by Gov. Timothy M. Kaine and Rep. Robert C. Scott (D), the state's only black congressman.

Clinton's deputy campaign manager, Mike Henry, directed Kaine's 2005 campaign, which relied in part on winning Prince William and Loudoun. Mo Elleithee, a communications specialist, and Matt Felan, a finance official, who have extensive Virginia roots, are working on her state strategy. Mame Reilly of Alexandria, a confidante of former governor Mark R. Warner and the head of a Democratic National Committee caucus on women, is one of her most prominent supporters in the state.

Obama strategists have broken Virginia into four parts -- Northern Virginia, Richmond, Charlottesville and the Tidewater area -- all of which are filled with the voters they seek. He is expected to hold events in all four areas as he blitzes the region Sunday and Monday.

Kevin Griffis, an Obama spokesman, said the Illinois senator will be more appealing than Clinton to Northern Virginians, including the area's significant number of self-described independents. In Virginia, voters are free to decide on Election Day which party's primary they will participate in.

"Barack has proven he can do well with voters . . . in Northern Virginia," Griffis said. The inner suburbs of Arlington and Alexandria are populated by many recent immigrants and young professionals.

Obama and Clinton have committed to attending Saturday's Jefferson-Jackson Democratic dinner in Richmond.

  • Here are some Democratic Possibilities suggested by the Washington Post
  1. Barack Obama sweeps all three jurisdictions, gaining the momentum that wins him the nomination.
  2. Barack Obama wins narrowly in VA and MD, handily in DC. Results only muddy the waters.
  3. Hillary Clinton stays closer than expected in Virginia, robbing Obama of chance to claim big victory
  4. Hillary Clinton ekes out a win in Virginia and stays close in Maryland; Obama's fade begins.

AAPP: I go with possibility # 1. But this will be a protracted battle.

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