ABC News’ Sunlen Miller reports: Sen. Ben Nelson has endorsed Barack Obama.
On a morning conference call with reporters and Obama campaign manager David Plouffe, Nelson, D-Neb., said that Obama, “represents the best hope for our own political reconciliation and a future where the cogs of government are working smoothly for progress instead of being gummed up by partisanship.”
Nelson, the conservative Democrat from Nebraska, said that he will be campaigning for Obama soon, and will do whatever the senator asks of him to help his candidacy.
Citing Obama’s past support in his own reelection campaign in Nebraska, Nelson recalled, “In 2006 when I was seeking reelection, the other party made me their No. 1 priority to defeat. Barack Obama, without my asking, made me his No. 1 priority to help get reelected. So I will do everything that I can, that he asks, to do what he asks to campaign for him and work for him.”
Obama national campaign manager David Plouffe told reporters that Nelson’s support is key, even though Nebraska’s primary is Feb. 9, after a large cluster of primaries on Super Tuesday, Feb. 5, that could swing the Democratic race.
“The truth is that if this is not decided on Feb. 5, the states right after are going to be very important,” Plouffe said.
The Obama campaign has staff in 19 of the 22 Feb. 5 states currently, and by the end of the weekend it will have staff in all of the Super Tuesday states. Plouffe said that the campaign anticipates having staff in Nebraska soon, an indication that it believes a lot more states will be in play after Super Tuesday and, if Obama prevails, into the general election.