House Majority whip James Clyburn, the top-ranking African American in Congress, endorsed Barack Obama this morning, CNN reports. “Senator Obama brings a new vision for our future and new voters to our cause,” Clyburn said. “He has created levels of energy and excitement that I have not witnessed since the 1960s.” Clyburn is the first of today’s expected wave of superdelegate endorsements.
The South Carolina rep’s allegiance is no surprise; his daughter works for Obama, and Clyburn has repeatedly criticized the Clintons for perceived race baiting. But he is the first member of House leadership to endorse, and is pushing hard to get the 73 remaining uncommitted representatives to follow suit. Obama needs 46 more delegates to clinch the nomination.