Nightline Talks To Clyburn About S.C. Dem Primary

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If tonight's two-hour debate won't be enough to satiate your primary appetite, ABC's Nightline will be focusing on Saturday's South Carolina race.

There's a preview piece based on interviews with Congressman Jim Clyburn, who scared some Clinton supporters earlier this month when he suggested he might come off the bench for Obama. He has since returned to his pledge to stay on the sidelines and not endorse either candidate.

"I'm like everybody else, I'm torn," South Carolina Democrat Jim Clyburn says of his presidential choices in the primary coming up this Saturday.

Clyburn, 67, says he takes enormous personal pride in Obama's candidacy. But as the father of three girls, he also takes pride in Clinton's historic run. "She is doing things for them as well," he says.

Ultimately Clyburn stayed neutral, abiding by his promise to the Democratic National Committee, which "told me up front that the candidates were very concerned about the candidates having this primary and my getting actively involved on behalf of one or the other candidates, and the rest of them would boycott it. And they couldn't have that. So I am keeping my promise to the party because I think this whole thing is much bigger than my emotions."

Clyburn doesn't disagree with the assessment from camp Obama that all these attacks are of a piece.

"Campaigns for primaries are a part of the preliminaries," he says. "And you've got to get toughened up in the preliminaries in order to do well in the finals. So it seems to me that if we know this kind of thing's out there, you would do well to experience this during the preliminaries so that you will know how to adjust to it or react to it when you get into the finals. And so I would say, as unfair as some of this may be, get used to it. Because if you're around for the general election, you're going to have to come face to face with it."

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