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It's Clinton vs. Obama, in New Jersey and California It's Clinton vs. Obama, in New Jersey and California

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It's Clinton vs. Obama, in New Jersey and California

In politics, loyalty often trumps everything. And on Friday two Democratic presidents, one former and one current, are busy repaying old debts.

Bill Clinton will be up in New Jersey, stumping for Rep. Bill Pascrell, a Democrat who endorsed his wife, Hillary Clinton, in her presidential bid four years ago, but who is now caught in a fierce primary fight.

His opponent is Rep. Steve Rothman, an early and enthusiastic endorser of Barack Obama in 2007.

So what is Rothman up to today? He just so happened to have a meeting at the White House with Obama, and the two walked together along the colonnade in full view of reporters as the president made his way to the Marine One helicopter.

Don't think for a second that it's a coincidence. It marks the second time this congressional primary season that Obama has used the presidential helicopter as a prop in an appearance with a Democratic congressman engaged in an intense primary battle.

Obama isn't formally endorsing as the head of the party, but that doesn't mean he isn't playing favorites.

Last month, when Obama's helicopter landed in Burbank for his big fundraiser with actor George Clooney, he was greeted at the tarmac by Rep. Howard Berman. They rode together in the president's motorcade to Clooney's home, through the district Berman is battling over with fellow Democratic Rep. Brad Sherman.

And Sherman? He backed Hillary Clinton four years ago and now has the endorsement of her husband in his fight with Berman.

Both the California and New Jersey primaries will be held next Tuesday, June 5.


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