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By The Time Hillary Gets To South Carolina

When Hillary Clinton basically went negative on Martin Luther King earlier this week, I remember thinking that was the final nail in her coffin. In hindsight, of course, I should have realized that those comments might not ruffle that many feathers in New Hampshire (where it wasn't until 1999, after all, that the state celebrated MLK Day).

But South Carolina's another story. And, in today's NYT, we're starting to see that story unfold:

WASHINGTON — Representative James E. Clyburn of South Carolina, the highest-ranking African-American in Congress, said he was rethinking his neutral stance in his state’s presidential primary out of disappointment at comments by Bill and Hillary Rodham Clinton that he saw as diminishing the historic role of civil rights activists.

Mr. Clyburn, a veteran of the civil rights movement and a power in state Democratic politics, put himself on the sidelines more than a year ago to help secure an early primary for South Carolina, saying he wanted to encourage all candidates to take part. But he said recent remarks by the Clintons that he saw as distorting civil rights history could change his mind.

“We have to be very, very careful about how we speak about that era in American politics,” said Mr. Clyburn, who was shaped by his searing experiences as a youth in the segregated South and his own activism in those days. “It is one thing to run a campaign and be respectful of everyone’s motives and actions, and it is something else to denigrate those. That bothered me a great deal.”

Are the chickens coming home to roost?

--Jason Zengerle