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Theodore C. Sorensen, former special counsel and adviser to President John F. Kennedy and a widely published author on the presidency and foreign affairs, practiced international law for more than[…]

“The Democratic Party has always had some splits,” Sorensen says.

Sorensen: Well the Democratic Party has always had some splits – at least for a long time they have. They were split over civil rights even when Kennedy and Johnson made their historic decisions to put the Democratic Party behind the Civil Rights Movement in this country and prohibit discrimination and segregation on the basis of race. And that split has continued. The Vietnam War, which Johnson unfortunately entered and escalated after Kennedy had proven to be too smart to put anything more than advisors and instructors in, that split the party along grounds of conscience. And moral issues – but to some extent along lines of age. So the split between the establishment of the Democratic Party and the . . . those who are more idealistic has existed for some time. It’s being reflected now in the split behind the establishment folks in Washington who are behind Hillary, and those young people in the grass roots who are behind Obama. And when Obama is elected, I know the establishment well enough to know they will get behind him very rapidly. And I believe he’ll be able to not only unite the Democratic Party. I believe as never before he will unite the country – both parties . . . Independents, Republicans, as well as Democrats.

Recorded on: 1/30/08