With Election Day finally having come and gone, God-o-Meter is closing up shop till 2012–or at least 2010. Till then, get your faith and politics fix over at Beliefnet editor-in-chief Steve Waldman’s blog.
TPM Election Central reports that Hillary Clinton’s chief delegate hunter, Harold Ickes, says the Obama/Wright controversy is a top issue among the party’s very powerful super-delegates. Is he being self-serving? Maybe. Is he correct to warn Democrats that the GOP and its allies will turn all that disturbing Wright footage into swiftboat-style attack ads as November closes in? Absolutely.
Here’s what TPM turned up:
In an interview with me this morning, senior Hillary adviser Harold Ickes confirmed that Reverend Jeremiah Wright is a key topic in discussions with uncommitted super-delegates over whether Obama is electable in a general election.
The comments from Ickes, who is Hillary’s chief delegate hunter, are to my knowledge the first on-the-record confirmation from a Hillary adviser that the Wright controversy is a subject in conversations between the Hillary campaign and the super-delegates her advisers are trying to win over to Hillary’s side….
“Look what the Republicans did to a genuine war hero,” Ickes said, in a reference to John Kerry.
“Super delegates have to take into account the strengths and weakness of both candidates and decide who would make the strongest candidate against what will undoubtedly be ferocious Republican attacks,” Ickes continued. “I’ve had super delegates tell me that the Wright issue is a real issue for them.”
In a reference to Wright’s controversial views, Ickes continued: “Nobody thinks that Barack Obama harbors those thoughts. But that’s not the issue. The issue is what Republicans [will do with them]…I think they’re going to give him a very tough time.”
Asked whether he was specifically bringing up Wright to super-delegates, Ickes said: “I’ve said what I’ve said…I tell people that they need to look at what they think Republicans may use against him. Wright comes up in the conversations.”