Clyburn hitting airwaves this week

House whip says its about driving out African American support

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After years of relatively quiet campaigning, House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn (D-Orangeburg) is going on TV and radio this week in advance of the Nov. 2 elections against GOP opponent Jim Pratt and Green Party candidate Nammu Muhammad.

South Carolina's 6th District is designed to offer strong minority support, so Clyburn says he isn't getting on the airwaves over concern for his re-election.

"I'm not doing TV because I need it to win," he says. "I think it generates more interest in the race."

Clyburn hopes that interest will drive out African American supporters that will be key in potential victories for Democrats on the statewide ballot, including gubernatorial candidate Vincent Sheheen, as well as Charleston locals Ashley Cooper and Robert Barber.

The narrative for most of 2010 has been one of overwhelming momentum for conservatives and Republicans. But, on Election Day, momentum is worthless and turnout is everything.

"I work hard to make sure African Americans and progressives don't get despondent," Clyburn says.

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