The Clarion-Ledger, 6/4/8

Likely Democratic presidential nominee Sen. Barack Obama may carry Mississippi in the November election despite the state’s history of civil rights strife and voter support of conservative-leaning candidates, some political observers say.

Obama supporters agree with their prediction, saying his nomination will prompt a record turnout by African-American voters who make up more than half the state’s Democratic Party voters.

State Republican Party leaders, however, voice confidence that Mississippi will choose Arizona Sen. John McCain, the presumptive Republican nominee. But they acknowledge work remains to be done.

“I’m not going to say (McCain) will win handily,” said Jim Herring, outgoing chairman of the Mississippi Republican Party. “I think Republicans will have to be united. I think we will be united in November.”