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No way...noone could have seen this one coming...summary below, full article here: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/24944453/?GT1=43001

CHICAGO - Sen. Barack Obama clinched the Democratic presidential nomination Tuesday, becoming the first black candidate to lead a major party into a campaign for the White House, The Associated Press reported based on its tally of delegates.

Obama arranged a victory celebration at the site of this summer’s Republican National Convention — an in-your-face gesture to Sen. John McCain of Arizona, who would be his opponent in the race to become the nation’s 44th president.

In an afternoon conference call among Clinton and members of the New York congressional delegation, Clinton signaled an interest Tuesday in joining the ticket as running mate but stopped short of conceding to Obama or dropping out of the race, a participant said. On the call, Rep. Nydia Velasquez said she believed the best way for Obama to win over Latinos and members of other key voting blocs would be to take Clinton as his running mate.

“I am open to it,†Clinton replied, if it would help the party’s prospects in November, said the participant, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the call was a private matter.
The AP said Obama sealed his victory based on public declarations from delegates as well as from an additional 22 who had confirmed their intentions to the news service. The count also included five delegates Obama was guaranteed as long as he gained 15 percent of the vote in South Dakota and Montana later in the day.

Enthusiastic audiences
As the strongest female presidential candidate in history, Clinton drew large, enthusiastic audiences. But Obama’s were bigger still. One audience, in Dallas, famously cheered when he blew his nose on stage; a crowd of 75,000 turned out in Portland, Ore., the weekend before the state’s May 20 primary.

Clinton countered Obama’s victory in with an upset five days later in New Hampshire that set the stage for a campaign marathon as competitive as any in the last generation.

Obama’s bigger-than-expected victory in North Carolina on May 6 offset his narrow defeat in Indiana the same day. Four days later, he overtook Clinton’s lead among superdelegates, the party leaders she had hoped would award her the nomination on the basis of a strong showing in swing states.

Obama lost West Virginia by a whopping 67 percent to 26 percent on May 13. Yet he won an endorsement the following day from a former presidential rival, former Sen. John Edwards of North Carolina.

Clinton administered another drubbing in Kentucky a week later. This time, Obama countered with a victory in Oregon and turned up that night in Iowa to say he had won a majority of all the delegates available in 56 primaries and caucuses on the calendar.
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