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Advantage: Obama

Barack Obama
AP
Barack Obama

By rebounding from his political struggles over Jeremiah Wright and gas taxes, Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) may have survived the toughest punch that Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-N.Y.) can throw. (Video: CNBC's John Harwood analyzes Tuesday's primary results)

His North Carolina primary win was more convincing than Clinton aides had feared. And the photo finish in Indiana -- whether she had appeared to have built a steady lead -- showed a resilience that calmed the jittery nerves of other Democratic politicians and Obama's own aides.

Both sides are now working the superdelegates hard: Team Obama for them to fall in line and pull the party together behind him, and Team Clinton simply to stay neutral long enough for her to fight on a little longer. He hasn't locked it up yet, but nearly all the advantages are his.

One sign: Obama picked up four more superdelegate endorsements Wednesday.

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