Monday, May 19, 2008


US presidential hopeful, Senator Barrack Obama is some few metres from clinching the democratic nominations, sources predict.

Today, his White House bid won support from the Senate's oldest and longest-serving member, Robert Byrd, who acclaimed his freshman colleague as a "shining young statesman."
Byrd, aged 90, went public with his endorsement despite his state of West Virginia voting overwhelmingly for Obama's primary opponent Hillary Clinton last week.Both Clinton and Obama were "extraordinary individuals," the Democratic "superdelegate" said in a statement.

Earlier Tuesday Obama secured the endorsement of another superdelegate, Washington state Democratic chairman Dwight Pelz, and his overall delegate tally on stands at 1,909 against Clinton's 1,718.

Byrd stressed: "I believe that Barack Obama is a shining young statesman, who possesses the personal temperament and courage necessary to extricate our country from this costly misadventure in Iraq, and to lead our nation at this challenging time in history.

"Barack Obama is a noble-hearted patriot and humble Christian, and he has my full faith and support," said Byrd, who has served in the Senate since 1959 and has long since renounced his youthful dalliance with the Ku Klux Klan.

The African-American Obama, 46, is homing in on the Democratic nomination with just five contests left including Kentucky and Oregon on Tuesday.

But Clinton, 60, is vowing to stay in the race despite a steady drift of superdelegates -- Democratic leaders who are free to vote for either candidate -- to the camp of her rival from Illinois.

The winning line needed to secure the Democratic nod to run against presumed Republican nominee John McCain is 2,025.