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Obama Overtakes Clinton in Superdelegate Endorsements

The latest count of Democratic Party superdelegates shows Barack Obama has eliminated Hillary Clinton's lead among the officials who will decide the party's nomination for president. VOA's Kent Klein reports from Washington.

Superdelegates are the officeholders and other party officials who will attend the Democratic National Convention this August in Denver, Colorado. They can support whichever candidate they choose, regardless of who wins the primary elections and caucuses. Neither Obama nor Clinton can win the Democratic nomination without them.

The latest count by various news organizations show Obama has a narrow lead over Clinton in endorsements from superdelegates.

Because Obama leads in the number of regular delegates pledged, Clinton would need to win the superdelegates' support by a wide margin to receive the nomination.

Hillary Clinton has led Barack Obama in superdelegate support for most of the campaign, but since Obama's big win in the North Carolina primary and his better-than-expected narrow defeat in the Indiana primary last Tuesday, he has added 20 more superdelegates while Clinton has received only one.

Despite the fading prospects for her candidacy, Clinton continues to campaign tirelessly. She held a fundraising event in New York City Saturday, and blamed the OPEC cartel for rising fuel prices.

"I believe that nine of the 13 countries in OPEC are members of the W.T.O., and I would have the United States file complaints against them, and I would change our laws so that you could use the anti-trust laws to go after OPEC," he said.

Obama campaigned Saturday in the Northwestern city of Bend, Oregon, and again said he would end the Iraq war as soon as possible. "Our nation is involved in two wars--one war that has to be won, the war against al-Qaida and the terrorist networks in Afghanistan and in Pakistan--one war that was a war of choice and I believe should have never been authorized and should have never been waged, the war in Iraq that I want to bring to an end," he said.

The next primary election is on Tuesday in the small Eastern state of West Virginia, where Clinton has a big lead. Oregon and the Southern state of Kentucky vote the following week.