Sunday, January 13, 2008

Daughter helped McCaskill decide for Obama

Sen. Claire McCaskill officially announced her endorsement of Illinois Sen. Barack Obama for president this morning:

The senator's decision to support Obama underscores concerns expressed by some Democrats in hard-to-win states like Missouri, that Clinton has limited crossover appeal beyond the party faithful and limited ability to bridge the partisan divide in Washington.

"I have kind of staked a tent in the middle ground and with some frequency I ran into Barack Obama there," MacCaskill said of her Senate tenure. She called him a "once in a generation" leader and "a gust of fresh air. He is different. He is not like most of the politicians in Washington."

McCaskill called Clinton "a smart woman...a strong leader" and acknowledged that she had faced strong pressure from her women's group allies to support the former first lady, or at least stay neutral. But she added, it's"important we look forward" and said of her decision, "I feel very strongly about it." The senator said it was her 18-year-old daughter, an Obama supporter, who ultimately urged her off the fence.

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