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Another Clinton friend bolts to Barack Obama

April 18, 2008 |  8:41 am

New York magazine reports this morning that another former member of Bill Clinton's cabinet plans to announce his endorsement of Barack Obama today, joining Bill Richardson on the list of high-profile defections among the Clintons' longtime personal and political friends.

This time it's Robert Reich, Bill Clinton's former Labor secretary, current Berkeley professor and self-described friend of the Clintons for 40 years. Reich, who has been critical of the Clintons before, despite the friendship, reportedly will announce the endorsement at 10 a.m. PDT on his blog (cue James Carville).

Reich told reporter John Heilemann that he initially intended to stay out of the fray, primarily out of loyalty to the long friendship. But Clinton's post-"bitter" ads in Pennsylvania moved him to action.

"I've come to the point, after seeing those ads, where I can't in good conscience not say out loud what I believe about who should be president. Those ads are nothing but Republicanism. They're lending legitimacy to a Republican message that's wrong to begin with, and they harken back to the past 20 years of demagoguery on guns and religion. It's old politics at its worst — and old Republican politics, not even old Democratic politics. It's just so deeply cynical."

-- Scott Martelle

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