…is still so far off. We’ve finally arrived at the final primary,
and it falls only three days after the dramatic DNC meeting that
settled the Florida and Michigan delegate problem. This contest is only
getting stranger and…meaner.

Hillary Clinton’s supporters are fueling the fire of division between her camp and Barack Obama’s.

WE’D heard a lot about Barack Obama’s fanatical sup
porters, but little about Hillary Clinton’s frenzied following – until
this past weekend’s meeting of the Democratic National Committee’s
Rules and Bylaws Committee.

Yet that passion is teetering on the brink of morphing into a raging anti-Obama force…

As voting was taking place, a woman wearing a “Team Hillary” shirt
shoved a man wearing a small Obama button on his lapel, The New York
Times reported. Another woman yelled, “McCain in ‘08! McCain in ‘08!
No-bama! No-bama!”

The proceedings were often interrupted by boos and hisses when
support for anything less than full seating was expressed. At one
point, a childish exchange in the audience – “Shut up!” answered by
“You shut up!” – brought things to a stop.

This may be politics, but it’s embarrassing. And degrading.
Democratic party leaders keep talking – wearily – about unity, and the
whole thing keeps devolving into even more bitter diviseness. They
tried to bring order out of chaos, and…it didn’t work. It appears the
party is split in two.

And then another clergyman close to Obama went and threw gasoline on the fire, just to make things hotter. The Chicago Tribune editors called it vile.

When Barack Obama announced his campaign for president,
you could anticipate that ugly racial stereotypes would rear up. You
probably couldn’t anticipate that some of his strongest supporters
would promote the worst of it.

To his credit, he rebuked the comments and left Trinity Church, finally.

So…..how much damage has been done to the candidates and the party? Even outside the US, observers are wondering whether Obama can recover his immense popularity and support, after all.

He’s trying everything, even spinning his abortion support to the state that enacted the strongest abortion ban bill since Roe v. Wade.

Brace yourself. After the June 3rd final primaries, this battle is
heading into a new phase. And it doesn’t look at all like a unity
rally.

Sheila Liaugminas

Sheila Liaugminas is an Emmy award-winning Chicago-based journalist in print and broadcast media. Her writing and broadcasting covers matters of faith, culture, politics and the media....