Saturday, November 08, 2003
A Citizens Guide to the Man Who Would Be President http://www.mediainfo.com/editorandpublisher/headlines/article_display.jsp?vnu_content_id=2020984
A new book on Howard Dean is due to be published on Nov 15th:
At the Rutland (Vt.) Herald and its sister paper, The Times-Argus of Montpelier, editors and reporters have collaborated on what they call the real backgrounder on Howard Dean -- a new book titled Howard Dean: A Citizens Guide to the Man Who Would Be President, which hits bookstores Nov. 15.
And they ought to know. These papers, despite a combined circulation of less than 35,000, covered the leading Democratic presidential candidate for more than 11 years as governor, and the previous five years as lieutenant governor. During that time, editors say, they saw how he really responds to problems, concerns and political footballs -- a far cry, they contend, from what many in the national press have presented.
"Dean is not especially a liberal," said Dirk Van Susteren, editor of the papers' Sunday magazine who also edited the book. "That is one of the biggest surprises." Hamilton Davis, a veteran Vermont journalist and one of nine reporters who contributed chapters to the project, agreed. "Once you read this book, you will realize that what you think you know about him is not true," he said. "My guess is the general public knows virtually nothing that is in this book."
Irene Wielawski, a freelancer whose 20 years of newspaper experience include a stint at the Burlington Free Press, covered Dean's childhood and college years. She writes that his outspoken, blunt personality came out early, citing an incident at Yale University. Dean was playing touch football and confronted a friend, an ROTC scholar, for taking a cheap shot at another player who was the son of outspoken, anti-war Yale chaplain William Sloan Coffin. "Dean stopped the game and told his friend to knock it off, accusing him of taking the shot because he didn't like the guy's father," she said. "He didn't let his friendship get in the way of playing fair."
Another background highlight in the book, described by veteran political reporter Jon Margolis, acknowledged Dean's time at the 1980 Democratic National Convention as a Jimmy Carter delegate who also got along well with the rival, insurgent Edward M. Kennedy faction. "He said he voted with the Carter people during the day and partied with the Kennedy people at night," Margolis recalled. "That showed his ability to get along with both sides." Margolis credits Dean's behavior at the convention for helping him to get the chairmanship of the Chittenden County Democratic Party later that year because "he could bring people together."
I doubt it will all be as rosy as this, but it does give us something to read while waiting for Dean's memoirs :)
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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.