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"America has two great dominant strands of political thought - conservatism, which, at its very best, draws lines that should not be crossed; and progressivism, which, at its very best, breaks down barriers that should never have been erected." -- Bill Clinton, Dedication of the Clinton Presidential Library, November 2004

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Monday, February 24, 2003


Dean's DNC speech draws praise

posted by Aziz P. at Monday, February 24, 2003 permalink View blog reactions
Dean's appearance at the DNC has drawn an amazing amount of press and media coverage. The Washington Post's Howard Kurtz has an article titled "Howard Dean Gets Hot" with links to stories and headlines from various newspapers and magazines around the country. In addition to print coverage, Dean got praise from Bob Schieffer and Joe Klein on Face the Nation - here is a transcript of their laudatory remarks (thanks to Teddy Davis):

KLEIN: when we make predictions, but I--I got to say I was at the--the DNC, the Democratic National Committee, meetings in Washington on Friday and Saturday--well, on Friday, and Howard Dean, the governor of Vermont came in and he just blew those people away. It was one of the most effective speeches I've ever seen a candidate give. Now he doesn't have foreign policy experience, but I think that at the very least, he is going to sharpen up the other candidates and he's going to make this a very, very interesting race.
SCHIEFFER: In every successful political contest, you will find a phrase or a one-liner that catches the public's attention, a few words that, agree or disagree, caused you to say, 'Hey, did you hear what so-and-so said the other day?' That's why I took notice when I called in from the road last week and a colleague asked, 'Did you hear what Howard Dean said the other day?' Dean, of course, is the Vermont governor and long shot presidential candidate. He had stepped to the microphone at a Democratic National Committee meeting, accused his rivals of trying to copy, rather than challenge, the Bush administration, and then electrified the crowd by saying, 'I'm Howard Dean and I'm here to represent the Democratic wing of the Democratic Party.'

Now whether his analysis is right or wrong is not the point here. But with that one remark he has separated himself from the growing field of Democrats and won the first 'Did you hear what so-and-so said?' primary. Just ask the better-known and well-financed Dick Gephardt, who formally announced his campaign with a big rally last week. Not many Democrats, though, were asking what he said.

It is a long way from knowing who the Democrats' nominee will be, but if I were one of those other candidates, I'd start keeping an eye on Howard Dean.

In addition, the video of Dean's speech at the DNC event is now available here courtesy CSPAN:

 Dean DNC speech

UPDATE: managed to ask the Washington Post's Terry Neil about Dean. Check out the transcript of the online chat to see what Neil had to say.


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About Nation-Building

Nation-Building was founded by Aziz Poonawalla in August 2002 under the name Dean Nation. Dean Nation was the very first weblog devoted to a presidential candidate, Howard Dean, and became the vanguard of the Dean netroot phenomenon, raising over $40,000 for the Dean campaign, pioneering the use of Meetup, and enjoying the attention of the campaign itself, with Joe Trippi a regular reader (and sometime commentor). Howard Dean himself even left a comment once. Dean Nation was a group weblog effort and counts among its alumni many of the progressive blogsphere's leading talent including Jerome Armstrong, Matthew Yglesias, and Ezra Klein. After the election in 2004, the blog refocused onto the theme of "purple politics", formally changing its name to Nation-Building in June 2006. The primary focus of the blog is on articulating purple-state policy at home and pragmatic liberal interventionism abroad.