Day on Campaign Trail to Remember Dr. King

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Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton called for a cabinet-level poverty czar and Senator John McCain said he was wrong to have voted a quarter century ago against a federal holiday in memory of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. as both presidential candidates converged here on Friday to appeal to black voters on the 40th anniversary of Dr. King’s assassination.

Senator Barack Obama, who polls show is the overwhelming choice for president so far among African-American primary voters, spent his day hopscotching around Indiana, North Dakota and Montana, although Dr. King’s life and legacy were the subject of an emotional speech he delivered to a racially mixed crowd at a forum at a high school in Fort Wayne, Ind.

From the Memphis church where Dr. King delivered his last sermon the evening before he was assassinated by James Earl Ray, Mrs. Clinton gave her support to an idea long advocated by the King family: a cabinet position that she said would be “solely and fully devoted to ending poverty as we know it, that will focus the attention of our nation on this issue and never let it go.”

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