I tried to told you:

There is something of a “reverse gender gap” phenomenon among the state’s likely Democratic primary voters, with Clinton, a New York senator and former first lady, leading among men and Obama, a senator from Illinois, leading among women. Black women are voting for Obama by a margin of more than two to one, while black men are voting for him by a smaller margin.

Meanwhile, the Oprah Effect, beyond having monopolized press coverage over the weekend may have had a negative influence:

On the endorsement front, Bill Clinton seems to have a larger positive impact than Oprah Winfrey. Thirty-eight percent of likely Democratic primary voters in the state say the former president’s involvement makes them more likely to back Hillary Clinton, while just 10 percent say Winfrey’s involvement steers them toward Obama. Fifteen percent say Winfrey’s involvement makes them less likely to support Obama.

Bob Kerrey has made a feeble “apology” for his earlier comments regarding Obama’s heritage and personal history.

I want to sincerely apologize for the remarks I made on Sunday in Council Bluffs, Iowa, after an event at which I endorsed Senator Hillary Clinton’s Presidential candidacy. I answered a question about your qualifications to be President in a way that has been interpreted as a backhanded insult of you. I assure you I meant to do just the opposite.

After you and I met during your primary campaign for the Senate, I wrote a public letter in which I said that that you were among the two or three most talented people I have ever met in politics. Nothing in your performance in the Senate or your campaign for the Presidency has altered that view.

The question I was asked in Iowa on Sunday was something like this: “Senator Kerrey, you ran for President in your first term in the Senate. If you were qualified, why isn’t Senator Obama?” With the benefit of my computer’s capacity to make certain that my words reflect my belief let me answer that question in this letter which you are free to use anyway you choose.

Yeah, yeah, I’m touched. John Cole isn’t buying it either.

I have said a lot of stupid things. I have said a lot of things that were interpreted incorrectly. I have said a lot of things I meant as a compliment but were perceived as an insult. I understand that this can happen.

But if ANYONE thinks this was an accident, or that this was anything other than more bilge coming from the Clinton camp, I got a bridge to sell you. Lemme guess, you think it was wholly accidental he chose the phrase ‘Islamic Manchurian candidate,’ too.

This has been going on for a while now. I wonder whether the Clinton people got wind of how things are looking in South Carolina, and decided that maybe trying to portray Obama as an ethnic and religious other might have consequences among black voters.

My guess is if Obama stays competitive after Iowa and New Hampshire, we’ll see more of this.

I can see the push polling questions now: “Would you be less likely to vote for Obama if you knew he had strapped a bomb to his chest screaming Allah Akhbar when he attended a terrorist training camp in Indonesia when he was five, where he sat next to Osama bin Laden and wrote an essay entitled “I want to blow up the World Trade Center When I Grow Up, That, Or Sell Coke?”

But it’ll be okay. Because I’m sure the Clinton campaign will apologize.

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