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That Muslim Smear

One unexpected thing happened at the Clinton event I described below: I chatted with a woman from nearly Millersburg, who looked to be in her late sixties, and who plans to caucus. She'd been undecided before seeing Bill tonight but is now backing Hillary. "He made me believe all the things that I've sort of been questioning about," she said with a charmed smile.

Then I asked her what her friends and neighbors are saying about the other candidates. She said there was a lot of debate and indecision, and that people have concerns about each candidates' particular weaknesses. Specifically, she said some people are "worried" about Obama's race, and whether it might make him unelectable. She continued:

"That, and the fact that he's a Muslim," she said, without a trace of irony or guile. "That's where we got all our problems from."

"Do you really believe it's a fact that he's a Muslim?" I asked. "Because it's not true."

"Well, that's what I've heard," she replied, seemingly unfazed.

The woman gave me her name, but I'm withholding it here because I don't think she means to be spreading a crude smear.

--Michael Crowley