PARTY PEOPLE: NANCY RUTH WHITE.

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Nancy Ruth White, a Hillary Clinton delegate from Redlands, California, is one of the 300 delegates who signed a petition to read Clinton's name out on the floor. She spoke with TAP's Ezra Klein about her decision.

How did you come to be a delegate?

I'm a retired teacher. I've been involved with Democratic Party politics since McGovern in 1972. Then I became excited about Ted Kennedy's candidacy because I was strongly behind his emphasis on a national heath plan and his support for women's issues like the Equal Rights Amendment. So for about 35 years, I've been doing politics as my avocation. And I've also done this work through my teacher's union and my church and my community action board. I just feel the Democratic Party is the party for the people and is genuinely concerned about the plight of the working person.

You were one of the 300 who signed the petition to have Hillary Clinton's name read at the convention. Why did you sign?

I am a Hillary delegate but very committed to Barack Obama being our nominee. The reason I was one of the 300 signatures to have Hillary Clinton's name placed on the floor to be our nominee for president is because I believe she is a woman who has attained so much and come so far that she really deserves to be recognized. There are countless Democrats here because their states voted for Hillary. That should be recognized.

There's a perception in the media that supporting putting Hillary's name on the floor is in tension with support of Obama. You say that's not the case.

I don't think it is. I've talked to a lot of people and they're all more concerned about the direction of the party. If you look at the issues between Barack Obama and Hillary, they are so very similar on the issues. And it's so exciting choosing between a woman and an African American for our nominee. But above that, we need to make things happen, in infrastructure and health care and so on. Before I signed onto this petition, I checked and made sure that both the Hillary camp and the Obama camp were in agreement. Hillary is supportive of Obama and wants to keep the party united, and with that assurance, I was more than happy to sign.

--Ezra Klein

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