Personal Democratic SC Debate: Hillary Clinton Barack Obama

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Clinton, Obama get fiercely personal Democratic South Carolina debate heats up MYRTLE BEACH, SC—The smolde...
Clinton, Obama get fiercely personal Democratic South Carolina debate heats up MYRTLE BEACH, SC—The smoldering acrimony between the Democratic presidential front-runners flared openly as Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama traded charges in a debate Monday about who is dishonest, who is cowardly and who is doing the bidding of reviled special interests. The debate was the most fiercely personal of the election season as the candidates showed the strains of a long and bitter campaign. At one point, Obama and Clinton raised their voices over each other to be heard. Each even attacked the other's biography. Obama dismissed Clinton for working as "a corporate lawyer sitting on the board at Wal-Mart" during the 1980s while he was a community organizer on the streets of Chicago's South Side. Clinton countered by blasting Obama for doing legal work he did for Tony Rezko, a developer and campaign donor to Obama since indicted on corruption charges, while she joined her husband in struggling against the Republican-controlled Congress during the 1990s. Smarting from charges former President Bill Clinton has made that Obama has not been consistent in his opposition to the Iraq war and that Obama had spoken favorably of Republican policies, the Illinois senator accused the New York senator and her husband of misleading the public. The only polite treatment of the evening was reserved for the members of the Congressional Black Caucus Institute, the hosts of the Martin Luther King Day event, who were seated in the front row of the auditorium and to whom the candidates made frequent reference. Some influential African-American leaders are staying out of the fray right now and have refused to endorse a candidate in the days leading up to this weekend's South Carolina primary, where roughly half the Democratic electorate is black.