Unity will need to be more than a word in Denver

The Minnesota DFL today released the names of guest speakers for its morning breakfast/caucus meetings/pep rallies during the Democratic National Convention in Denver. There are no big starpower names (in Boston, perhaps, Garrison Keillor and Rob Reiner spoke), but there is room for reading the leaves.

We’ll be hearing the word “unity” next week, but in interviewing delegates and others across the state for the last two weeks, it’s more show than substance at the moment and it remains a major challenge for a party with a history of internal turf wars.

Hillary Clinton won the big states that the Democrats will need to win in November, but — especially with it becoming obvious she’s not in the whisper/leaks for vice president on the ticket — some Clintonians think the Obama forces could do more to reach out to them (and, no, none of them wants to be identified…. yet).

That apparently is not going to happen — at least in public — at the Minnesota delegation meetings. Of the 27 speakers given slots, only five endorsed Hillary Clinton during the primaries.

If there is to be a significant effort to win the Clintonians support (it’s not their vote that’s important, it’s their ability to organize, raise money, and turn out the vote), it’ll come next Tuesday when three Clintonians will speak: Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee of Texas, who was a national co-chair for Clinton, Mayor David Cicilline of Providence, and State Sen. Tarryl Clark are all scheduled.

Another Clinton supporter, Rep. Margaret Anderson Kelliher, will speak to the delegates on Thursday, along with Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island.

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