WASHINGTON (CNN) – House Majority Whip James Clyburn said Thursday he expects some Democratic legislators to hold back from endorsing Barack Obama because it could prove politically unwise in their congressional districts.
On CNN's "The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer," Clyburn was asked if some Democrats might follow the path of Oklahoma Rep. Dan Boren, who said last week he would not endorse Obama because the presumptive Democratic nominee holds liberal positions that are out of step with his constituents. (Yesterday, Boren clarified that he will indeed vote for Obama.)
Clyburn said “most Democrats in the United States Congress are going to be very supportive of this campaign” but predicted that others may be more hesitant.
"A lot of them are going to look at their congressional districts and see how the congressional district voted,” Clyburn said. "And they'll be holding back, waiting to get some signal from their constituents as to how they ought to conduct themselves."
It's justified for some conservative Democrats to withhold their support, Clyburn explained.
"That's how it should be, Wolf," he said. "It’s one thing for us to have a big tent party. But it's also another thing for these candidates to stay in close touch with their constituents. And I understand that."
Clyburn, who accused of Bill Clinton of using racially-loaded language during the Democratic primary and once told the former president to "chill," thinks Clinton will eventually campaign for Obama - on his own terms.
"I think that President Clinton will come to this campaign when he thinks its best for him to do so. But I expect him to be very supportive of the Democratic ticket."