Nancy Pelosi told ABC News' George Stephanopoulos on Friday that it would be "harmful" to Democrats if superdelegates were to give the party's presidential nomination to a candidate who is trailing in the delegates awarded in primaries and caucuses.
"If the votes of the superdelegates overturn what's happened in the elections," said Pelosi, "it would be harmful to the Democratic Party."
Although Pelosi offered her assessment without directly referencing Barack Obama, her comments lend considerable support to the Illinois Democrat.
Obama leads Hillary Clinton in pledged delegates: 1,396 to 1,241. Because of the proportional system used by the Democratic Party to allocate delegates, Obama is widely expected to remain in front of Clinton in pledged delegates at the conclusion of the primary season.
Political prognosticators give Clinton more of a chance of catching, or even surpassing, Obama in the national popular vote but Pelosi argued that superdelegates should follow the pledged-delegate, not the popular-vote, leader.
"But what if one candidate has won the popular vote and the other candidate has won the delegates?" asked Stephanopoulos.
"But it's a delegate race," Pelosi replied. "The way the system works is that the delegates choose the nominee."
Michigan Gang of Four Push Re-Vote Proposal:
Debbie Dingell, one of four powerful Michigan Democrats working to find a way to seat the state's delegates at the Democratic National Convention without a credentials fight, issued a statement Friday laying out the parameters of a possible compromise.
"At this time," wrote Dingell, "we are focusing on the possibility of a state-run primary in early June, which would not use any state funding. This option would require the passage of legislation by the State Legislature, and we look forward to working with the members of the Legislature in the coming days to see if this option can be made a reality."
The Michigan Democratic Party, Clinton campaign, and the Republican who leads the state senate, all reacted positively on Friday to the proposal.
The Obama campaign, which has more to lose from a re-vote, reacted tepidly.
Obama spokesman Bill Burton promised to evaluate "carefully" any new proposal to come to a "fair seating" of the delegates from Michigan while accusing Clinton of "trying to change the rules."
Obama took to the Huffington Post on Friday to criticize "inflammatory and appalling remarks" made by his controversial former pastor, Rev. Jeremiah Wright.
"I vehemently disagree and strongly condemn the statements that have been the subject of this controversy," wrote Obama. "I categorically denounce any statement that disparages our great country or serves to divide us from our allies. I also believe that words that degrade individuals have no place in our public dialogue, whether it's on the campaign stump or in the pulpit. In sum, I reject outright the statements by Rev. Wright that are at issue."
Obama did not say anything in his Huffington Post item about removing Wright from his campaign's "African American Religious Leadership Committee."
But on Friday evening, Obama spokesman Tommy Vietor emailed ABC News to say that Wright is no longer serving on the Obama committee.
McCain Camp Says It Was 'An Error' to Circulate Clip on Obama Pastor:
A McCain aide told Time Magazine's Michael Scherer on Friday that "it was an error" for the McCain campaign to circulate a Wall Street Journal op-ed attacking Obama for his relationship with the Rev. Jeremiah A. Wright Jr.
"Obviously what's important here is what Sen. McCain has said on it," the McCain aide told Time.
The Wall Street Journal story linking Obama and Wright was one of several full-text clips circulated to reporters on Friday morning by the McCain campaign.
Read the Wall Street Journal op-ed by Ronald Kessler here.
Obama says Rezko played a bigger fundraising role:
The nimble Obama press shop made use of the five-and-a-half weeks between now and the next primary to talk with The Chicago Tribune about indicted businessman Tony Rezko. According to the Tribune story which hit the web shortly before the start of Friday's network newscasts, Rezko was a more significant Obama fundraiser than previously known.
The indicted businessman raised "as much as $250,000 for the first three offices Obama sought."
Be sure to tune into "This Week with George Stephanopoulos" on Sunday for the full interview with Pelosi as well as an interview with Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson.
"Well, I wasn't qualified. I mean, my parents were married."
--Former POW and Marine Orson Swindle in a McCain video recounting John McCain's explanation for why the Arizona senator had to be in the Navy rather than the Marines
Watch Swindle here.
Saturday, March 15, 2008
-- Attends town hall meeting with voters, Plainfield, IN
-- Attends St. Patrick's Day Parade, Pittsburgh, PA
-- Attends St. Patrick's Day Parade, Scranton, PA
IOWA DEMOCRATIC PARTY
-- Holds county conventions
Monday, March 17, 2008
At the White House and Beyond . . .
-- 8:30 am ET: Releases the current account for the current account for the fourth quarter, Washington, DC
FEDERAL RESERVE BOARD
-- 9:15 am ET: Releases the February industrial production report, Washington, DC
POLITICAL NEWS STORIES ON ABCNEWS.COM
ABC News' Jake Tapper, Audrey Taylor, Sunlen Miller and Eloise Harper Report: Clinton Woos Superdelegates at Private Dinner LINK
ABC News' Teddy Davis Reports: Pelosi's Delegate Stance Boosts Obama LINK
ABC News' Jake Tapper Reports: Hillary's Superdelegate Explanation LINK
ABC News' Brian Ross and Rehab El-Buri Report: Obama Disagrees with Pastor's 'God Damn America' Sermon LINK
ABC News' Jake Tapper Reports: Obama: Wright Wrong LINK
ABC News' Jennifer Parker Reports: Controversial Religious Advisers Bring Scrutiny LINK
ABC News' Jake Tapper Reports: 'Preparedness' and the Democratic Nomination LINK
ABC News' John Stossel Reports: Sex, Laws and Politicians LINK
ABC News' Jake Tapper Reports: McCain Veepstakes Watch (part 1) LINK
ABC News' Bret Hovell Report: McCain 'Looks Forward' to Debate with Obama on Taxes LINK
ABC News' Jake Tapper Reports: Wright and Wrong LINK
ABC News' Lindsay Hamilton Reports: Pelosi Reacts to Spitzer Scandal LINK
ABC News' Bret Hovell Reports: McCain Slam Spending 'Gridlock in Washington' LINK
ABC News' Jake Tapper Reports: Detroit Mayor: "This Unethical, Illegal Lynch Mob Mentality Has to Stop" LINK
POLITICAL VIDEO ON ABCNEWS.COM
Clinton Courts Congressmen
The sugerdelegate battle continues on the trail and in the halls of Congress. LINK
Citizen Pundits Speak
What people on the street think about gender and race in the presidential race. LINK
Exclusive: Pelosi 'Sad' for Spitzer Family
Watch "This Week" for George Stephanopoulos' full interview with Speaker Pelosi. LINK
'The Note' Rewinds the Week's Best Moments
ABC News' Senior Political Reporter Rick Klein on the weekly political roundup. LINK
Bush: 'Confident' in Economy Despite 'Tough Times'
In a speech to NY's Economic Club, Bush tries to calm fears of a recession. LINK
The Week in Politics
Cokie Roberts and Matthew Dowd break down the moments that mattered. LINK
Candidates Make Their Case
Sens. Obama and Clinton tout their foreign policy experience. LINK
Intern for the ABC News Political Unit:
The ABC News Political Unit is now seeking three full-time summer interns in Washington, D.C.
The internship begins Monday, May 19, and runs through Friday, Aug. 22.
Not only do Political Unit interns attend political events and contribute to The Note and the politics page of ABCNews.com, they also help us by conducting research, maintaining contact lists, and updating the political schedule.
In order to apply, you MUST be either a graduate student or an undergraduate student who has completed his or her first year of college. The internship is NOT open to recent graduates.
You also must be able to work eight hours per day, starting early, Monday through Friday. Interns will be paid $8.50/hour.
If you write well, don't mind getting up early, and have some familiarity with web publishing, send a cover letter and resume to firstname.lastname@example.org as soon as possible, with the subject line: "INTERN" in all caps. Please indicate in your cover letter the dates of your availability.