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Clinton: Going to Carolina...

Clinton makes her first stop in NC today, a state that is becoming more and more of a must-win if she is to complete a comeback. NBC/NJ's Athena Jones reports she will announce a new proposal to support job training, during a stop at a technical college in Raleigh, NC Thursday morning. The new plan would cost $12.5 billion over five years. The stop will be the first of a six-day tour through North Carolina, Indiana and Pennsylvania, where she'll focus on the economy, according to a briefing by her campaign staff.
 
The idea is to demonstrate Clinton's ability to be a steward of the economy and she will be highlighting state and local initiatives that she believes are working. The focus on job training and re-training, is something North Carolina Gov. Mike Easley has also pushed and Clinton argues the federal government should partner with state and local governments on these kinds of initiatives.
 
The plan would make job training available to displaced workers, provide new Pell grants for displaced workers who enroll in training and education programs to upgrade skills and support new on-the-job training programs. Her campaign said to expect more language today about John McCain and the economy.
 
Aides see North Carolina as an "uphill battle" but say it's also a place where they see opportunities.
 
"A group of prominent Hillary Clinton donors sent a letter to House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Wednesday asking her to retract her comments on superdelegates and stay out of the Democratic fight over their role in the presidential race. The 20 prominent Clinton supporters told Pelosi she should "clarify" recent statements to make it clear superdelegates -- nearly 800 party insiders and elected officials who are free to back any candidate -- could support the candidate they think would be the best nominee."
 
More: "Among the signees of the letter were prominent Democrats and Clinton supporters like Robert Johnson, founder of Black Entertainment Television; Bernard Schwartz, former chairman of Loral Space and Communications; and venture capitalist Steven Rattner. The signees reminded the House leader from California of their support for the party's House campaign committee and said 'therefore' she should 'reflect in your comments a more open view' about superdelegates." 
 
The Washington Post: "Pelosi has not endorsed either candidate. Brendan Daly, her spokesman, said that the speaker recognizes that superdelegates will choose between the candidates but that she 'believes it would do great harm to the Democratic Party if superdelegates are perceived to overturn the will of the voters. This has been her position throughout this primary season, regardless of who was ahead at any particular point in delegates or votes.' Obama spokesman Bill Burton in an e-mail criticized what he saw as an implied threat by the group to withhold funds from Democratic Party campaign committees."
 
The Clinton camp says it raised $500,000 on Wednesday, through three events -- one in New York, two in Washington, NBC/NJ's Athena Jones reports. Spokesman Mo Elleithee said there were some 2,500 people at the evening event at the Daughters of the American Revolution Constitution Hall in Washington. Ticket prices started at $25. The half a million figure does not include online contributions, which aren't counted until the end of the day.
 
NBC/NJ's Mike Memoli reports that hours after Bill Clinton said surrogates should not resign simply for attacking the opposing campaign, a local official who has endorsed Hillary Clinton singled out the Jeremiah Wright controversy during his introduction of the former president.
 
"I am not Jeremiah Wright, but I am an ordained minister and a pastor," said Damron Bradshaw, mayor of the small town of Chesapeake. "What I have to say instead of what he said is God bless America!"
 
After taking the stage moments later, Clinton simply thanked Bradshaw for his introduction without noting the comment. Instead, the former president focused his remarks on issues of particular interest to seniors. "West Virginia has one of the older populations in America, but the fastest growing group of Americans are people over 65," he said at Chesapeake's senior center. "We know that presents a significant challenge for us."
 
HRC did an interview with the Wall Street Journal yesterday. The WSJ lead from that interview: "Hillary Clinton said she fears the U.S. is slipping into a Japanese-style economic malaise that will overwhelm the Federal Reserve's considerable powers. The Democratic presidential candidate said the U.S. government should be ready to buy troubled mortgages from investors and lenders to spur a recovery and avoid a lengthy period of stagnation because of unaddressed weaknesses in the financial sector."