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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, July 10, 2003


Hesiod gets it; when will the press catch on?

posted by annatopia at Thursday, July 10, 2003 permalink View blog reactions
I felt compelled to share this link with everyone, especially those who continue to question Dean's "electability". Some excerpts:

The biggest knocks on Dean, by the pundits, have been his opposition to the Iraq war, and his support for Civil Unions for gays and lesbians.
The conventional wisdom is that both of these issues will hurt Dean in a general election match-up with George W. Bush next fall, and therefore his "electibility" should be an issue in the Democratic primary.
The problem is, both of these assumptions are not supported by much evidence.

He goes on to explain why the American public is moving in Dean's direction, using supporting polling data from Public Opinion Watch. On these two issues, he concludes the following:

First, with respect to Dean's position on the Iraq war, Texiera crunches some numbers of recent polls, and finds that the American public is steadily moving TOWARD Dean's position... Rather than being a drag on his electibility, his principled, pre-war opposition might actually turn out to be an asset... Even other anti-war candidates, such as Dennis Kucinich, would have problems, because their opposition to the war is and was not limited to the specifics of that conflict. It's born of an overall opposition to war, any war, in general. Dean actually supported the war in Afghanistan, which makes his criticism of the Iraq war all the more credible.

Let me note that this isn't a knock on Kucinich. It's simply an explanation of the differences between Dean and Kucinich regarding their war stances.

While support for and opposition to "Civil Unions," is split down the middle, it turns out that significant majorities of the American public are now fully in support of various other "gay rights" issues. To take one striking example, a whopping [historically] 56% of those surveyed in a recent poll, say they would be willing to vote for a Gay Presidential candidate. In other words, Dean's position on Civil Unions is quite in tune with public opinion generally regarding gay rights. And even "Civil Unions" are at an historically high 50% in recent Gallup polls.

Hesiod does note that when the term civil union is replaced with gay marriage, the numbers take a dive. We can take that as a warning, because we all know the GOP will try and distort the issue of equal rights by using divisive language. After all, this is just another result of the tactics outlined in Nixon's Southern Strategy and it seems par for the course for BushCo these days. Now go read the whole thing.


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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.