Image Hosted by ImageShack.usU.S. Rep. Nick Rahall (D) of West Virginia’s 3rd District in the southern end of the state endorsed Sen. Barack Obama early on.

Rahall, chairman of the Arab American caucus, is in a district that went largely for Sen. Hillary Clinton.

Rahall did what he could do, but as kos and others have pointed out, Congressional representatives and senators do not have political machines to turn out the vote for other candidates.

But that didn’t stop Rahall from trying and he deserves our thanks.
Rahall is probably taking a lot of political heat for his decision to support Obama in a district that went overwhelmingly for Clinton.

Rahall believes the voters will come around. Here’s what he said before the primary:

Rep. Nick J. Rahall, the longtime Democratic congressman from southern West Virginia, said Obama was a lot closer to Appalachia voters than might be apparent on the surface. After all, sections of central and southern Illinois bear a striking resemblance to much of Appalachia.


“With each succeeding primary election, as Sen. Obama becomes more toughened, he will continue to improve,” Rahall said. Locals will “recognize that he is more attached to their issues than John McBush – I mean McCain.”

John McBush. You’ve got to love the guy.

But Rahall is used to taking principled and not always popular stands. In the days after Sept. 11, 2001, he’s been an outspoken advocate to prevent discriminatory practices of the Bush administration against Arab Americans.

Rahall opposed the Iraq war. He opposed telecom immunity. I don’t agree with him on every issue, but his opponent, Marty Gearhart, is a real piece of work, who had to be appointed a candidate by the West Virginia GOP since he forgot to sign his notarized candidacy papers.

So if you want to show support to a Barack Obama supporter think about a donation to Nick Rahall.

Nick Rahall helicoptered all over West Virginia for Obama. Let’s show him some support back.

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