Sen. John McCain has found a (former) Clinton delegate to put in an ad: Debra Bartoshevich of Wisconsin. "Now, in a first for me, I'm supporting a Republican, John McCain," she says in the ad.
The numbers behind the tension: "Fewer than half of Hillary Rodham Clinton's supporters in the presidential primaries say they definitely will vote for Barack Obama in November, a USA TODAY/Gallup Poll finds, evidence of a formidable challenge facing Democrats as their national convention opens here today," Susan Page writes for USA Today. "Thirty percent say they will vote for Republican John McCain, someone else or no one at all."
Among the delegates themselves, perhaps cause for a little more optimism: "More than half of the delegates that Mrs. Clinton won in the primaries now say they are enthusiastic supporters of Mr. Obama, and they also believe he will win the presidential election in November, the poll found," John M. Broder and Dalia Sussman report in The New York Times. "Three in 10 say they support Mr. Obama but have reservations about him or they support him only because he is the party's nominee. Five percent say they do not support him yet."
"Forty-two percent of delegates originally pledged to Hillary Clinton (20 percent of all pledged delegates) and 8 percent of superdelegates say they will vote for Clinton on the convention's presidential roll call," per CBS News.
Just in time: Politico's Roger Simon has an opus out on the nomination fight. Title: "Relentless."
Will this be enough? "Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton will tell her pledged delegates on Wednesday that they can vote for presumptive nominee Barack Obama at this week's roll call during the Democratic National Convention," Allison Sherry reports in the Denver Post. "The decision to release her delegates is symbolically important, and it frees delegates from 10 states who are legally obligated to vote for the candidate they are pledged to, even if that person is no longer running for president."
"Clinton's gesture has the potential to reduce the appearance of friction while reinforcing her status as one of the party's most formidable power brokers," Shailagh Murray and Anne Kornblut write in The Washington Post.
The message the Clintons want out: "Some Democrats have worried Hillary Clinton could be the skunk at Barack Obama's convention party, but Clinton insiders say she and her sulking husband are now determined to be team players," Ken Bazinet and Michael Saul report in the New York Daily News. "Both Clintons plan to press hard-core supporters all week to end their boycotts and brooding and embrace Obama's candidacy. They will urge their zealots to work for Obama and will make a point in their convention talks of demonstrating the past is over and they are firmly behind an Obama victory."
As for the broader themes: Get ready for fightin' words.
"Four years ago John Kerry's convention focused on Kerry with few attacks on President Bush -- Obama believes that was a mistake and his convention will push a much sharper message attacking John McCain and his policies," ABC's Jake Tapper reported on "Good Morning America" Monday.
The New York Times' Adam Nagourney reports that Obama will "draw contrasts with Senator John McCain, particularly on the economy and his opposition to abortion rights" -- and will have Al Gore introduce Thursday night at Invesco Field. (Not being confirmed by convention folks.)