Doyle, Altmire backing Obama

Pa. superdelegates delayed decisions

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Two Western Pennsylvania Democratic superdelegates, U.S. Reps. Mike Doyle and Jason Altmire, have given their presidential support to Illinois Sen. Barack Obama.

Mr. Doyle, of Forest Hills, said yesterday that he had delayed making a decision until the primary season ended Tuesday, but now, Mr. Obama has "won this nomination fair and square." He added: "I believed that the most important thing our party could get out of this primary was an open and transparent process that reflected the will of the Democratic voters. I think the Democratic Party has accomplished this."

Later yesterday Mr. Altmire, of McCandless, added his name to the list of superdelegates supporting Mr. Obama. But his statement appeared to be an attempt not to alienate voters in his 14th District, who in Pennsylvania's primary supported Mr. Obama's rival, New York Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, by a 30-point margin.

"A formal endorsement is no longer necessary," Mr. Altmire said. "The Democratic primary is over, and I am going to support the nominee who was chosen by people who voted across all 50 states over the past five months. I expect the vote at the convention to be uncontested, and that our party will be fully united behind Senator Obama."

Mrs. Clinton has not yet conceded the nomination to Mr. Obama.

The announcements by Mr. Doyle and Mr. Altmire leave only one uncommitted Pennsylvania superdelegate, Rep. Tim Holden, D-Susquehanna. He could not be reached for comment.

Superdelegates are party leaders and political insiders who can support whomever they please at the convention.


Mackenzie Carpenter can be reached at mcarpenter@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1949.


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