TAMPA, FLA. -- On his first campaign stop in Florida since last August, Barack Obama failed to address an issue that is on the minds of many state Democrats - what to do with the Florida delegates. In the past he has said that the delegates will be seated at the Denver convention and that his campaign is currently negotiating some sort of an agreement with the party. However, at his largest rally ever in the state, the issue was noticeably absent.
Obama told supporters that his campaign has already reached a threshold in the nominating process. "Last night I was in Iowa because we marked a significant moment in our campaign where we achieved a majority of the pledged delegates that are assigned in this election," he said. "And, so, we are at the threshold of being able to obtain this nomination."
He vowed that the Democrats will be unified in November, and praised Hillary Clinton for the strides that her campaign has achieved. "She has broken through barriers and will open up opportunity for a lot of people including my two young daughters," Obama said.
The focus of Obama's remarks today clearly was the general election and John McCain. Obama hit McCain on his position on lobbyists and accused him of flip flopping on the issue. "I'll tell you that John McCain then would be pretty disappointed with John McCain now because he hired some of the biggest lobbyists in Washington to run (his) campaign."
The McCain campaign was quick to respond to the assertions, calling on Obama to disclose a list of lobbyists who work for his campaign. "It's absurd, despite his own rhetoric, Senator Obama still refuses to disclose the list of lobbyists advising his campaign. What is Senator Obama hiding?," McCain spokesman Tucker Bounds asked in a written statement to reporters.
Obama spokeswoman Jen Psaki said the campaign does not employ anyone who is currently a federally registered lobbyist. "Anyone who was a former lobbyist had to file termination papers," Psaki said, "that has been the case since this beginning."
She said it is "ironic" that the McCain campaign has brought up the issue after five members of McCain's staff resigned because their lobbyist ties.