After months of acrimony, it's a virtual lovefest among the Democrats, culminating in today's rally in Unity, N.H. -- the first joint public event of the general election campaign for Barack Obama and the vanquished Hillary Clinton.
Thursday in New Hampshire, Michelle Obama drew sustained applause when she called Clinton an "extraordinary woman" who put issues important to working women and families "front and center." Thursday in Washington, Clinton praised Obama to the heavens in front of two audiences. And Thursday night in Washington, D.C., Barack Obama announced he's giving maximum $2,300 checks from both himself and his wife to help Clinton pay off her primary campaign debt.
They're flying up together from Washington to New Hampshire on Obama's campaign plane. This morning, the Obama campaign sent out this set-up for the rally:
"Today, Barack Obama and Senator Hillary Clinton will campaign together in Unity New Hampshire, where each received exactly 107 votes in January’s primary.
"Barack Obama has admired Senator Clinton as a leader, learned from her as a candidate, is proud to call her his friend, and knows how much they’ll need both Hillary Clinton and Bill Clinton as a party and a country in the months and years to come.
He and Senator Clinton may have started with separate goals in this campaign, but they have made history together. Together, they attracted millions of Americans who cast their ballot for the very first time. Together, they inspired a record number of women, and African-Americans, and Latinos, and young people to participate in their democracy. Together, in this campaign, in 2008, they shattered barriers that have stood firm since the founding of this nation. Because of this campaign, and because of the campaign waged by Hillary Clinton, our daughters will forever know that what they look like and who they are is no barrier to who they can be in the United States of America."
But there's still work to do on the unity front.
ABC News reports on some rather unenthusiastic attendees at the fund-raiser get-together Thursday night. One described it as like a "dentist's appointment."
And The Washington Post reports on women who supported Clinton who haven't quite made the transition to Obama and who call themselves "PUMAs" -- an acronym for "Party Unity My A**."
And several key questions remain. How exactly will Obama use Clinton to campaign for him? Will Obama's donors follow suit and help Clinton repay her vendors? Will Clinton's loyalists follow her lead and enthusiastically back Obama? And will Bill Clinton, who this week issued a one-sentence statement of support for Obama through a spokesman, get fully on board?
About Political Intelligence
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 email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @globeglen.