Slowly backing away

SLOWLY BACKING AWAY…. A couple of weeks ago, former Michigan Gov. William Milliken, a lifelong Republican, withdrew his support from John McCain, citing his offensive campaign and his choice of running mates.

Milliken was relatively easy for Republicans to dismiss; he was a three-term governor way back in the ’70s. Arne Carlson is a little tougher to ignore.

Arne Carlson, a former Republican governor in Minnesota, has endorsed Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama.

Carlson said Thursday that the Illinois senator’s stances on the Iraq war, the economy and green energy goals won him over. Carlson, who served from 1991 to 1998, also cited recent comments by GOP Congresswoman Michele Bachmann questioning whether politicians have “pro-America or anti-America views.”

“Regardless of our party, regardless of our partisan inclinations, there is no interest more compelling than the interest in the well-being of the United States,” Carlson said at a gathering of Obama supporters at the state Capitol.

Carlson added, “He has laid out for this nation a vision for a national purpose.”

These “Obamacans” seem to be increasingly common, don’t they?

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Steve Benen

Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.