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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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Thursday, May 15, 2003


The Memo is Available

posted by Matt Singer at Thursday, May 15, 2003 permalink View blog reactions
The DLC has posted its full memo. And when you read it, I think it becomes clear that they have no good reason for attacking Dean, a man talking about fiscal sanity, a pragmatic health care plan, and who is uniting centrists and the left.

Some people commenting here have wondered why, in the Dean Defense Forces post on the subject, we worked hard to make it clear that Dean should appeal to New Democrats. The answer is that New Democrats and the DLC, as is clear by the memo, are not right-wingers. They're hesitant progressives. They, like Howard Dean, realize that social justice can't be achieved without financial security. They, like Howard Dean, realize that progressivism must be pragmatic. The only problem is that they don't realize that they are like Howard Dean, arguably more like Howard Dean than John Kerry, Dick Gephardt, Al Sharpton, or even the conservatives in the group like Joe Lieberman (because Lieberman truly is an old-school conservative Democrat - there's relatively little "new" about him).

Dean's power comes from his ability to unite the activists and the rank and file. He's willing to fight, but he's not Quixotic. The DLC should be defending him against charges that he's too liberal to run for President. They should be working with us.

Please, Al and Bruce, work with us.

And please, stop the sniping.


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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.