WASHINGTON (CNN) - Democratic presidential candidates Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton hit the road in Ohio, relying on campaign surrogates to stump for them on the Sunday morning talk-shows.
The television appearances come at a critical time for both candidates as next Tuesday's key primaries in Texas, Ohio, Vermont and Rhode Island loom on the horizon. On CNN's "Late Edition with Wolf Blitzer," Clinton supporter Rep. Silvestre Reyes, D-Texas, explained why he is supporting the senator from New York.
"I'm supporting Hillary Clinton because I know she knows, understands and cares about issues that affect border communities like the one I represent."
Obama surrogate Sen. John Kerry, D-Massachusetts, also spoke to Blitzer, and defended his candidate's foreign policy experience.
"The fact is that Barack Obama comes to this race with more experience than George Bush, Ronald Reagan or Bill Clinton had in foreign policy at the national level. And the fact is that he has proven that it's his judgment that is correct," Kerry said.
On "Fox News Sunday," Sens. Dianne Feinstein, D-California, and Dick Durbin, D-Illinois, debated the idea of Clinton bowing out. Durbin, the Senate's Democratic whip, supports fellow Illinoisian Obama and said his top priority is doing what is best for the Democratic Party.
"I hope that she can understand that we need to bring our party together and prepare for a victory in November, which is the ultimate goal," Durbin said.
But Feinstein rejected the notion that it is time for Clinton to step aside, remarking "I think she should stay in the race. Her candidacy is extraordinarily important. If ever a qualified woman could hold the presidency of the United States, this is the qualified woman."
And Clinton supporter Sen. Evan Bayh, D-Indiana, spoke on CBS's "Face the Nation," trumping up her experience on national security issues.
"There is no doubt in my mind that she is prepared to be commander-in-chief at this difficult moment for our country," he said.
Former presidential candidate Sen. Christopher Dodd, D-Connecticut, who just announced his endorsement of Obama on Tuesday, was already thumping for him on Sunday.
"I believe that Barack Obama is bringing a unique set of qualities to his candidacy that go far behind how many years you've served in Congress, or served as the spouse in the White House," Dodd said.
Another former Democratic presidential candidate, New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson, said he is "legitimately torn" between the two candidates.
Richardson's endorsement is heavily coveted. He said he is primarily concerned with beating John McCain in the general election, and feels that the Democrats have a better chance if they choose a nominee sooner than later.
"The concern that I have is the bickering that took place between those two very fine senators is going on too long," he said. He added, "I'm just worried that the tone of this campaign has gotten excessively negative, and it's going to hurt us in November."
The most heated debate of the morning took place on ABC's "This Week," where senior staffers David Axelrod with the Obama campaign and Howard Wolfson with the Clinton camp attacked each other on issues that ranged from Obama's ties to indicted Chicago real-estate developer Tony Rezko to Clinton's unreleased tax records.
The most lively moment occurred when Wolfson challenged the Obama campaign to release all information related to Rezko, who goes on trial on corruption charges on Monday.
"They should put out all of the information regarding that real-estate transaction. All of the emails, all of the correspondence, all of the letters, every single piece of information so that the public can really look at this and say 'what's going on here?' " Wolfson charged.
Axelrod responded by saying those concerns had been put to rest in the media, and "There has not one bit of evidence of any wrongdoing on the part of Senator Obama in this or any other matter."
–CNN's Peter Lanier