COLUMBIA, S.C. -- If Barack Obama's campaign is worried about relying too much on independents and Republicans to win Democratic primaries, they aren't showing it.
A new 60-second TV ad that's now running nationally on CNN and MSNBC focuses largely on Obama's work with Republicans in Illinois and in the US Senate, and it features yet another clip from Obama's now-famous rejection, in his address to the 2004 Democratic National Convention in Boston, of the Red State-Blue State dichotomy
"This is a man who knows how to get things done," says freshwoman Senator Claire McCaskill of Missouri, who recently threw her support to Obama. "He understands that we’ve gotta move forward with a different kind of politics."
Despite Hillary Clinton's ability to win more rank-and-file Democrats in the last couple votes, Obama continues to make overt appeals to non-traditional Democratic voters. His rivals were highly critical of his recent praise for former president Ronald Reagan.
Clinton's campaign said in a statement today that Obama's new ad is a "clear and blatant violation" of a pledge the Democratic candidates made last year not to campaign in Florida, after the Democratic Party punished the state for moving its primary to a date earlier than was sanctioned. Many Florida homes watch CNN and MSNBC, her campaign noted. "The Obama campaign knows this, but has chosen to violate the pledge regardless," her campaign said.
Obama spokesman Bill Burton responded in a statement that the two networks said it would be impossible to exclude Florida TV sets from a national ad. "For that reason we consulted with the South Carolina Democratic Party Chair Carol Fowler, who told us unequivocally she did not consider this to be in violation of pledge made to the early states," Burton said.
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Glen Johnson is Politics Editor at boston.com and lead blogger for "Political Intelligence." He moved to Massachusetts in the fourth grade, and has covered local, state, and national politics for over 25 years. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @globeglen.