I know that you guys are probably not going to believe me but I do feel bad for these families who are so passionate about their choice that they can’t co-exist peacefully with their family members.
With Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton and Mr. Obama locked in a tight race before Tuesday’s voting, the campaign has turned into a gigantic family feud, with prominent and everyday Democrats splitting with spouses, siblings, parents and children. There is former Treasury Secretary Robert E. Rubin (Clinton supporter) and his son James (Obama); Representative Charles B. Rangel (Clinton), his wife, Alma (Obama); the Rev. Jesse Jackson (Obama), his wife, Jacqueline (Clinton), and their sons (split).
Loretta and Linda Sanchez, the only sisters in the House of Representatives, have endorsed Mrs. Clinton and Mr. Obama, respectively. And Penny Pritzker, a Chicago philanthropist, serves as Mr. Obama’s national finance chairman even as her brother, Jay Robert, holds fund-raisers across town for Mrs. Clinton.
“Within the family, for the first time you have different opinions,” Arnold Schwarzenegger, the Republican governor of California and Ms. Shriver’s husband, told The San Francisco Chronicle last week, around the same time Mr. Obama was calling his wife and coaxing her to his side. Three of Robert F. Kennedy’s children have endorsed Mrs. Clinton, while their mother, Ethel Kennedy, supports Mr. Obama, along with Senator Edward M. Kennedy, Caroline Kennedy and Representative Patrick J. Kennedy. “I’ve been in the family 30 years, and I’ve never seen that,” said Mr. Schwarzenegger, who has endorsed Senator John McCain.
And for every Kennedy or Sanchez, there are countless Democratic voters who find themselves arguing with family members over which checks to send, which lawn signs to display and which onesie to put the baby in: “Hillary Cares About Me” or “My Mama’s for Obama”?
“Things have been getting real ugly around here,” said Shazia Khan, a lawyer in Washington, who supports Mr. Obama while her husband, Samir Kanani, will vote for Mrs. Clinton. On a recent trip to Argentina, they watched a Democratic debate in their hotel room, arguing so loudly that the housekeeping staff came to check on them.