"We are one people, all of us pledging allegiance to the stars and stripes, all of us defending the United States of America. In the end, that's what this election is about." -- Barack Obama, DNC keynote address, July 2004

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Tuesday, September 16, 2003


See Dick. See Dick Attack. Attack, Dick! Attack!

posted by Editor at Tuesday, September 16, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
Well, the AP is reporting that former minority leader Dick Gephardt is apparently in the hour of great desperation. And thus begins the negative aspect of politics:
Not content to limit his criticism of Dean to campaign speeches, the Missouri congressman has launched a Web site - - that detail the former Vermont governor's eight-year-old comments about raising the Social Security retirement age and overhauling the Medicare program as well as his recent remarks about the issues.


Dean spokeswoman Tricia Enright called the Web site "the first smear Web site we've seen produced by a major presidential candidate."

Gephardt's cyberspace attack is the latest attack on Dean, who has used the Internet to organize supporters, raise millions and propel himself to the front of the Democratic presidential race.

I don't think this is a very good idea for Gephardt. Yes, he has to do something to distinguish himself and shake up the race, but going negative isn't it. Howard Dean is bringing new people into the process. Many of these people have been disenfranchised by this type of politics. I think it will only work to motivate them to send more money and work harder for Dean.


What Clark's Announcement Means

posted by G at Tuesday, September 16, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
It's hard to say, isn't it? First thing, it will probably kill Kerry's campaign. All Kerry has had going for him is his military service, and Clark's experience as NATO commander trumps that.

Overall, it *could* be a good thing, since the presence of Clark will focus new attention on the hideous situation we face in Iraq and the president who took us there.

The Washington Post asks the right questions about Clark, which really are just that--questions:
It is unclear whether Clark has the personal and political skills to mount a serious run for the White House, according to Democrats who know him. He has never run for office and has virtually no experience with domestic policy. Several people who worked with him during the Clinton administration also found him abrasive and controlling, two traits that could hinder him on the campaign trail. Several Democrats who have met with Clark in recent weeks, however, walked away impressed with his ideas and confident he would quickly become a formidable candidate.
Dailykos paints the dismal scenario: Clark hires attack mutt Chris Lehane, who's roaming the streets after being booted out of Kerry's campaign, and thus begins a nasty back and forth which brings down both Clark and Dean. The *really* dismal scenario is that this does so much damage to both men that Gephardt or Lieberman (or Kerry, if he manages to stay in) gets the nomination. Even if Clark manages to get the nomination this way, the conflict could so anger Dean fans that it deprives Clark of a vast and energetic group of people (that's us) who could otherwise help him bring down Bush.

Here's hoping that Clark keeps it clean and leaves Lehane out in the cold, and that Clark's voice joins Dean's in helping the American people understand just what the worst president in the history of the United States is doing to this country.

At this point, Dean is way ahead in terms of national organization, motivated supporters, proven campaign skills, AND demonstration that he has a visionary domestic agenda. We'll see if Clark can overcome the doubts about him and catch up.


When your hometown press says this about your nasty political ploys...well, it just may be time stop

posted by Matt Singer at Tuesday, September 16, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
Brian McGrory of the Boston Globe writes:
Pretend, for a moment, that Kerry was talking in clear English, which is something of a stretch these days, given that he's making Tom Menino sound like Tony Blair.

But what he's doing, if I'm interpreting him correctly, is accusing Dean of not being a man of his word, and a man who doesn't live up to his word, Kerry is essentially saying, is unqualified to be president.

So let's go back to 1996, to Kerry's reelection campaign against then-Governor Bill Weld, specifically to the night Weld met Kerry at the senator's wife's Beacon Hill mansion. They finalized an unprecedented agreement to limit advertising spending to $5 million apiece, and to limit the use of personal funds in the campaign to $500,000 apiece.

Good government types hailed the agreement as a major breakthrough. Kerry and Weld basked in the plaudits of editorialists the nation over. Kerry described the pact as "a model for campaign reform across the country."

But a funny thing happened on the way to Election Day. Kerry didn't just violate the deal, he pulverized it. Running out of money in the waning days of October, Kerry mortgaged and remortgaged the Louisburg Square house, ultimately pouring $1.7 million in personal funds into his campaign. For those of you keeping track at home, that's $1.2 million more than the agreement allowed.
Unless I'm mistaken, Dean isn't exactly talking about tapping personal funds. He's talking about tapping $50 donors. Personally, I've been getting really sick of the Kerry attacks on this point.

If Kerry has a moral objection to small donors, why doesn't he just come out and limit himself to $2000 donors and explain his rationale.


Dean must clarify NAFTA

posted by Aziz P. at Tuesday, September 16, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
Liberal Oasis has some tough love advice for Dean regarding his words on NAFTA:

Dean blew this big. But it’s fixable, if he’s willing.

On ABC’s This Week on Sunday, he picked a worthless fight with George Stephanopoulos over whether he used to be a “supporter” of NAFTA (Dean’s claim) or a “strong supporter” (George’s characterization).

To make matters worse, the Gephardt campaign did its oppo research, and quickly alerted the media of Dean’s '95 statement (also on This Week) that he was a “very strong supporter” of NAFTA.

(To any skeptics, check the transcript on Nexis. He said it, and it’s in context.)

This particular flub isn’t getting major media attention, but the political press corps (led by The Note) is surely fully aware of it, and is flummoxed, maybe even peeved.
If this is not corrected, he will be open to charges as severe as lying.

Of course, it is far more likely the case that Dean was not actively lying, (that would just be too stupid) but simply had no recollection of his earlier statement.

(There is no Nexis evidence that he ever used the phrase again to describe his position).

But it doesn’t matter.

Furthermore, if he lets this gaffe stand, he won’t be able to make his argument that we need international labor and enviro standards to minimize US job loss, without having others dredge all this up repeatedly.

Dean also said on This Week this past Sunday:

…when I make a mistake, I'm going to own up to it.

This is clearly a mistake. To not own up to it will invite more media skepticism and poison his future coverage on other matters.

The sooner Dean corrects this, the better.

(original emphasis removed, current emphasis mine). The political press corps is not neutral.

Gabriel earlier posted that the media should not be nit-picking and that Bush's own misstatements are actually egregious, deliberate, and harmful to the country compared to Dean's minor mis-step. He's absolutely right. But it's also irrelevant. This is the wrong election cycle to start expecting fair treatment in the media - as nominee, Dean is going to get Gored. This is the pragmatic truth. The campaign must accept this as reality and actively counter it rather than try to "rise above the fray" as Gore did and end up sinking like a stone.

The campaign has been showing dangerous tendencies recently, regarding their attitude towards critique. It's essential that they treat developing media memes with as much seriousness as they do frontal attacks by the other candidates.

UPDATE: I mis-quoted Gabriel. His point was that the feigned outrage over Dean's supposed mis-statements is hypocritical. He wants more nit-picking, of Bush, rather than explicitly decrying nit-picking on Dean. And again, I absolutely agree. But I think that given the media's submissive posture towards Bush, it's unlikely. These are the "facts on the ground".


Clark to announce tomorrow

posted by Aziz P. at Tuesday, September 16, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
No, it isn't official yet, but it will be tomorrow. Clark will make his announcement in Little Rock on Wednesday. It's being reported by most sources as "Clark will enter the race" but until he gets up there and actually says so, hold your breath.

Intriguingly, the spin on this from the conservative wingnuts is that Clark is Clinton's proxy against Dean:

Dean is too shrewd a pol to think that he could win in '04 with "hate Bush" as his only claim to office. That's why he is pushing the former NATO commander to run for president. In Dean's mind, Clark would be a perfect balance to him as a #2 on the Dean ticket. But Dean should know where the General's loyalties lie, and they're not with him. Clark is, above all else, a member in good standing of Team Clinton. Which means Dean is toast if Clark can have any say in it. And he will.
Clark wants the presidential nomination and the Clinton team -- who never act without clear orders from Billy and Hilly -- are lining up to get it for him, or at least use him to deny it to Dean. According to U.S. News & World Report's "Washington Whispers" by Paul Bedard, "Many of Clark's team in waiting are Clintonistas, like the former president's handyman Bruce Lindsey, scandal spokesman Mark Fabiani, and maybe even ex-Deputy Chief of Staff Harold Ickes, who's close to New York Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton." With a team like that behind him, Clark isn't aiming to play second banana. (Unless Hillary runs in '04, which is pretty unlikely. A Clinton-Clark ticket? I wonder how many ashtrays the general has had tossed at his head?)

As I said a couple of weeks ago, the Clintons are fighting against the Dean candidacy because they recognize that if Dean is nominated -- and goes down like McGovern did -- it will take a decade or more for America to again take the Dems seriously. That would mean Hillary would never make it back to Pennsylvania Avenue. Clark's job is to keep the Dems from following Dean off the McGovernik cliff. But how will he do that, given his positions?
Clark won't want to run as anyone's Number Two Boy, far less any likely loser such as Dean. But that's the catch. After gaining credibility in a primary run, Clark would be established as a national political figure in a way he will never be otherwise. Simply to keep his prominence, he might take a #2 slot at the Demo convention, especially if they make a big publicity splash drafting him. And if he is someone's #2, and they lose, it leaves him in competition with Miz Hillary in '08.

it's amazing how it always comes back to Hillary.


FOX/GOP want Dean, huh?,2933,97397,00.html

posted by Trammell at Tuesday, September 16, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
Yeah, right. If Dean is truly the "desired" Dem nominee, why such a tempest in a teapot? Dean National Jared Medina sent us this great analysis of the K Street flap as it's being reported by FAUX News. Some of you may not watch FAUX, but they have been running a version of this story on constant rotation since Saturday. It's important to note that the biggest piece of "meat" in the story -- that the campaign said Dean's remarks were "off-the-cuff" -- is not being reported by CNN or MSNBC even as a FAUX citation. Hmmm, maybe they don't trust their reporting...I wonder why. As if George Bush or John Kerry or Bill Clinton -- or FAUX news commentators -- actually write all of the words that come out of their mouths, please. And folks, after all of our kvetching that Dean needed more debate prep and media consulting, shouldn't we be thrilled that he got the best? I am. Jared, take it away:

Some of you might be aware that FOX News has been repeatedly airing the story regarding Howard Dean's appearance on K-Street.

They twist the coverage in a few subtle [and not-so-subtle] ways that make Dean look bad if you don't know both sides of the story:
Rivals to former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean are wondering about the 2004 Democratic presidential candidate's ability for straight talk, one day after he appeared on a fictional television show being coached with a line that he ended up using in a real live debate.

In a case of art imitating life, Dean last Tuesday delivered one of the most memorable lines of the Democratic presidential debate when he was asked about his capacity to serve the needs of African-American people even though he comes from a state with very few African-Americans.
First of all, since there are no references in the article to other Democratic rivals wondering about the candidate's straight talk ability, it's a fairly unfounded statement. Secondly, they hype the fact that he used lines from a "fictional" show for a real live debate.

What they don't report is that the K-Street taping was actual REAL debate prep for the CBC debate on Tuesday, and that it was incorporated into the K-Street story [as related by] James Carville and Paul Begala on the O-Blog.

The FOX story also states this:
Carville told FOX News at the sneak preview that the debate prep scene was utterly impromptu, ad-libbed and not scripted. He said he had no idea that Dean would use in the actual debate any of the lines from the fictional debate prep taped for a commercial television show.
This makes it seem like Carville was surprised that the line was used. Also, notice the addition of " from the fictional debate prep taped for a commercial television show." My guess would be that Carville didn't add that in there or at least said them in that way. I'm curious if there's a tape of the primary source here my guess would be that Carville, when asked if he knew Dean used the line, said something like "I have no idea". Could be speculation though.

And it also omits the fact that Carville actually likes the fact that Dean
used the line in the debate. From Carville on the O-blog:

"We offered the governor a few lines, just as we always did for President Clinton. He used one of them - and we hope he uses them all as the campaign progresses."

One more concerning item, though less again, from the FOX News article:
The day after the debate, the Dean campaign was asked whether the "Trent Lott" line said by Dean during the Congressional Black Caucus Institute debate was his original thinking. One of Dean's aides responded that his boss had offered it up as an off-the-cuff remark.

The aide's remark was printed in Washington newsletters and said to have been picked up by Carville and HBO's producers, who apparently sent word to the campaign to be cautious about claiming credit for something that they have on tape as an improvisational thought by Carville.
They don't know that the members of the Dean campaign that were asked about this were at campaign headquarters in Burlington and weren't around the K-Street taping -- they didn't know that this wasn't an "off-the-cuff remark." They [assumed] it was unpracticed because they had never heard it before.

Carville and HBO then let them know about the taping, and that was that. The tone of this, though, is that the Dean campaign was being dishonest about Dean's improvisational ability and that Carville was warning them, not that Carville was simply making them aware of something they did not know.

+ + +

Thanks, Jared. I agree. One reason, In my opinion, that Carville and Begala posted on the O-Blog was that they wanted to clarify the story before the show aired. At that point, FAUX was already running the story ad nauseam. To quote the President of FAUX News: "Bring 'em on" -- and please keep talking about Dean, Dean, Dean!


Dean endorses Imigrant Workers Freedom Ride

posted by Aziz P. at Tuesday, September 16, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
Dean has endorsed the Immigrant Workers Freedom Ride:

Modeled after the 1961 Freedom Rides, the Immigrant Workers Freedom Ride will see immigrants and their allies board buses from ten U.S. cities and stop in over 100 towns. They will converge in Washington DC, where they will meet with members of Congress. The Ride ends with a mass rally on October 4 in Flushing Meadows Park in Queens, New York.

"I strongly support the Immigrant Workers Freedom Ride and its goal of empowering millions of American workers to call for a clear roadmap to citizenship," wrote Governor Dean to Maria Elena Durazo, National Chair of the Immigrant Workers Freedom Ride. "It is my hope that the Immigrant Workers Freedom Ride, like the Freedom Rides of 1961 that inspired it, will serve as another defining moment in our history when the voices of a committed few help to raise the consciousness of all Americans."

Head over to Latinos for Dean for more info and organizing details!


Dean's "Southern Strategy"

posted by Christopher at Tuesday, September 16, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
From the Atlanta Journal-Constitution comes this terrific story about Dean's southern swing through Georgia and Alabama.

"Several times at Monday's rally, Dean alluded to the political reality that his anti-war and pro-gay rights positions make conservative Georgia a tough state to win. "I can hear [Bush campaign strategist] Karl Rove cackling right now: 'There's that liberal Yankee going to Georgia, telling people he's not in favor of the war and he's soft on defense,' " Dean said.

But Dean volunteer Clay Johnson said Georgia has one of the largest Internet Dean support groups in the country, and many who came Monday were early supporters who wanted to confirm their decision.

"I really wanted to see him with my own eyes," said Carol Goodman, a librarian at West Georgia State University, who said she had been "desperately" waiting for a Democrat to stand up to President Bush.

Two first-term Democrats in the Georgia House of Representatives, John Noel and Curt Thompson, were at the rally as Dean supporters, and they said more Dean support among Democratic elected officials will emerge soon.""

I think this is the best move Dean has made - barnstorming the South with the same energy and enthusiasm exhibited on the Sleepless Summer Tour. This makes Dean "America's Candidate" - and proves he's not willing to cede the South to the GOP. Terrific news to have Reps. Noel and Thompson on hand at this event - and more to come. Great work, Atlanta!


This Mis Is No Lady

posted by Trammell at Tuesday, September 16, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions has just launched a new site, that serves as an ongoing knowledge base and clearing house for the distortions and outright lies of Bush-Rove-Cheney Inc. They've also taken out a full page ad in The New York Times titled Mis-State of the Union. The ad reveals how the President mislead the nation in his State of the Union speech -- not just on Iraq, but on the economy, the environment, and other important issues. A few juicy tidbits:

George Bush: "The tax relief is for everyone who pays income taxes...Americans will keep, this year, an average of almost $1,000 more of their own money."
The Truth: Nearly half of all taxpayers get less than $100. And 31% of all taxpayers get nothing at all.

George Bush: "Our first goal economy that grows fast enough to employ every man and woman who seeks a job."
The Truth: Bush is the first President since Hoover to preside over an economy that has lost jobs, not created them - more than 2.9 million since 2001.

George Bush: "[My] Clear Skies legislation...mandates a 70% cut in air pollution from power plants over the next 15 years."
The Truth: The Bush plan will allow more than 100,000 additional premature deaths by 2020 than alternative legislation developed by the Environmental Protection Agency. The plan does not regulate carbon emissions and allows far more sulfur and mercury emissions.

George Bush: "[W]e achieved historic education reform - which must now be carried out in every school and in every classroom."
The Truth: Bush cut $8 billion from the promised funds for education.

When Bush was running for President, he said, "I believe everyone should be held responsible for their own personal behavior." We agree. The President has repeatedly mislead the country. Now it's time for Americans and the press to hold him responsible.

At the new site you can also register to receive daily e-mails and browse through other special features. Check it out, save it as a fave, and send it to a friend!

Monday, September 15, 2003


The Dean Thing

posted by Trammell at Monday, September 15, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
Dean’s surge helps Vermont Democratic Party

ROSS SNEYD The Associated Press

MONTPELIER — State Democrats are cashing in, both literally and figuratively, on Howard Dean’s national surge to help them rebuild the state party’s fortunes. This week, in particular, is demonstrating how much the Dean phenomenon is helping invigorate the state party and draw new people into supporting it.

Dean himself is headlining an event today on Burlington’s Lake Champlain waterfront at which state Senate Democrats hope to raise at least $50,000. At the same time, many town Democratic committees across the state will be holding their biennial reorganizations, a sometimes mundane process that also has been infused with enthusiasm from Dean supporters.

“The reality is that Howard’s presence in the race has energized Vermonters, and many of those folks are also saying, ‘Hey, what can I do to help the (state) Democratic Party,” said Democratic Chairman Scudder Parker.

After the 2001 reorganizations, the Democrats had formal committees in about 175 of the state’s 246 towns. This year, “we’re looking at quite possibly being in over 240 towns,” said Jon Copans, the Democrats’ executive director. [...]

“There’s no question that Howard is energizing the Democratic base here in Vermont just as he has nationally,” said state Senate President Pro Tem Peter Welch, whose Democratic majority will benefit from Tuesday’s event at the King Street ferry dock. “People see Howard much differently now.”

That has been demonstrated nowhere more this summer and fall than at the annual fairs and field days. The Democratic Party traditionally sets up booths at the fairs, and they’re usually festooned with the campaign literature and paraphernalia of local candidates. This year, nearly all of the booths also contained signs, buttons and bumper stickers for Dean’s presidential campaign.

And the demand for all things Dean was unexpected. Copans told of the reception at last week’s Tunbridge World’s Fair.

“The amount of attention that booth got was totally out of proportion from the way it had been in the past,” Copans said. “People waited in lines four deep. Those people, 95 percent of the time, wanted to talk about the Dean thing.”

NON-RELATED NOTE: I'm back in the saddle and blogging away, thanks much to all those who posted and sent e-mails with kind words. Ma is out of the hospital, at home, and recovering quite well. Again, thanks to all of you. - Scott


Where is the Outrage?

posted by G at Monday, September 15, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
The Cheney interview described in this Washington Post article is just one long stream of lies. I'll say it again: let's see some fraction of the energy aimed at Dean's supposed inconsistencies applied to the Bush liars. If George Stephanopolous wants to nitpick Dean because his position on NAFTA today is not identical to the National Governors Association position he signed on to in 1993, *fine*, but then he should be screaming at the top of lungs with outrage at the Bush lies.


WWDD (What Would Dean Do)? Repeal the Bush Tax Cuts... Now!

posted by Christopher at Monday, September 15, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
From Slate's Timothy Noah comes this September 11th column about the financial impliations of the Bush tax cuts in the context of our current economic forecasts, and the proposed $87 billion in supplemental spending that Bush wants to fund the Iraqi occupation and comes to some not-so-startling conclusions: Repeal of ALL the Bush tax cuts is the only thing that will get this country even close to fiscal sanity again.

What do the numbers say?

"It says that if we cancel all Bush's tax cuts, we can maybe, using the rosiest possible assumptions, balance the budget within five years. If we don't cancel Bush's tax cuts, the budget deficit will remain in three digits through the end of this decade...

What are we waiting for?

Prominent Democrats in Congress are making empty threats either to withhold the $87 billion Bush requested or to match it with new domestic spending. Well, sure, they're politicians. What about the editorial pages of the liberal New York Times and the less-liberal but fiscally responsible Washington Post? Both this week scolded Bush about the tax cuts' irresponsibility in light of his latest budget request. But neither editorial page has spelled out precisely how much of those tax cuts we ought to repeal. For that you have to look, oddly enough, at the public statements of presidential candidates Dick Gephardt and Howard Dean, both of whom forthrightly state the Bush tax cuts should be revoked in their entirety. Dean had the best line on this at the Sept. 8 Democratic presidential debate:

I'm not going to raise taxes. We're just going to go back to the same taxes that Bill Clinton had, because I think most people in America would be glad to pay the taxes they paid when Bill Clinton was the president of the United States, if they could only have the economy they had when Bill Clinton was president of the United States.



Dean has strong lead among LGBT voters

posted by annatopia at Monday, September 15, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
Great news from In a recent poll which sampled LGBT voters, Howard Dean led the pack. Here's the results:
Dean 37%
Gephardt, Kerry, Lieberman 4%
everyone else - less than 2.5%
Nobody else is making a dent in this politically active/aware segment of our population. What I find interesting about this poll is that the sample size is so large. Most polls sample a few hundred or a thousand voters, while this one sampled over 8000 potential voters. Plus, of those 8000, 92% were registered voters, which is much higher than the national average. The article also contains some interesting statistics about the age group breakdowns, etc. which we normally don't get with other polls. It's interesting information, and shows the depth of Dean's support in the LGBT community.


Chris Lehane resigns from Kerry camp,2933,97367,00.html

posted by annatopia at Monday, September 15, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
Na na, na na na na, hey hey hey, good-bye!

I could spend days expanding on why this is a GoodThing for the Kerry folks, but why beat a dead horse. I just want to congratulate all Kerry supporters because dumping Chris Lehane (don't be fooled by the resignation, folks) is the smartest thing Kerry's done during this whole election cycle. Now, if they could just get a muzzle for Jim Jordan...

*thanks to niner for the zonkboard link

Sunday, September 14, 2003


Silliest Article of the Day

posted by G at Sunday, September 14, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
This whole game journalists play now of saying "gotcha" when they can find 1) a few words that can be conceivably characterized as a misstatement, or 2) two statements from a candidate that appear vaguely contradictory-- it's just ridiculous. In the NY Times article I've linked to, the parsing of Dean's language is so fine, at several points, I can't even understand what the reporter is trying to say.

President Bush's statements on almost every issue don't agree with each other or with *reality*. Finally, in the last press conference a few journalists got around to pointing this out, but they still gave him a free pass when he ignored the questions. How about journalists apply to Bush the same dogged scrutiny they're applying to the Dems? Let's start with any of his many claims that there are chemical and biological weapons in Iraq! And don't forget Cheney's statement before the war that the Iraqis had nuclear weapons.


The Driver's Seat

posted by Matt Singer at Sunday, September 14, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
I was just scanning the New York Times "Campaigns" headline page and quickly realized how apparent it is who is the driving force in this race.

Number of times a (possibly potential) candidate's name appears in a headline on this page:
How you like dem apples?


Someone pointed out that I had omitted George. He's mentioned in 1 headline, but included in two other subheads.


True Story

posted by G at Sunday, September 14, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
So I'm in a cab yesterday and I notice the driver is reading an article printed from the Web about Bush and Iraq. I ask him if he's heard of Howard Dean. He replies,
Howard Dean? He's my MAN! Do you think he can beat Bush? I *know* he can beat Bush! I came to this country from Sierra Leone, and I've never given money to any politician. I'm sending him some money because Howard Dean is my MAN! I don't have a checking account or a credit card, so I'm getting a money order to send him some cash. I'm a legal resident, not a citizen. I know legal residents can send him money. Do you know if I can volunteer for him even though I'm not a citizen? I think I can do everything except vote. I'm telling all my friends who *are* citizens to vote for Dean and send him money. He's going to be the next president and he needs our help.
I ask him if he knows that he needs to fill out a campaign finance form in order for his funds to be matched, and he pulls out the form that he's downloaded and printed out from the web.


"What I Want to Know" Video

posted by G at Sunday, September 14, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
This you must see. If you have a broadband connection click above to go to the site. If you have a slower connection, you can download a 1 MB zipped executable Flash file with the video. Don't worry: it's virus free. Here's the zipped version for Windows and for Macintosh.

There is hope.

Saturday, September 13, 2003


Flash Mobs for Dean

posted by annatopia at Saturday, September 13, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
I'd just like to say Seattle4Dean rocks! Click on the link above for the story.


Paul Begala and James Carville to post on the O-Blog today?

posted by annatopia at Saturday, September 13, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
Not sure if this is a rumor or not, but it's on the O-Blog:
Also stay tuned to the blog. Matt tells me Paul Begala and James Carville will be posting later today.

Well, that's interesting. Imagine the possibilities...


Dean's statement on I/P

posted by annatopia at Saturday, September 13, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
From the O-blog comes a very eloquent statement from Gov Dean:
Governor Howard Dean expressed deep regret today at the ongoing efforts of some of the candidates for the Democratic nomination to continue to play 'gotcha' politics in so sensitive an area as the Middle East:
"Tomorrow is the tenth anniversary of the historic moment when President Bill Clinton, Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin and Chairman Yassir Arafat stood together on the South Lawn of the White House and signed the Oslo Accords. It was a moment of hope and a moment of peace. It is a moment that I hope still brings to all of us a sense of regret for what might have been. Instead of peace, today we have war. Instead of economic growth, we have terror. Instead of a new generation of young people engaged as partners for peace, we have a new generation of terrorists and a new generation of victims.
"Particularly in these days of enormous tension and spiralling violence, I see no room in American politics for political gamesmanship when it comes to the Middle East.
"Of course, Hamas is a terrorist organization, and it must be defeated and its members defeated for seeking to thwart peace and to kill innocent men, women and children. To suggest that I might feel otherwise is shameful and should be beneath the dignity of any campaign.
"In the past few days, I have made clear that I intend to replant the seeds of peace that were sown on the White House lawn ten years ago tomorrow. I will dedicate myself from day one of my administration to the search for peace. I have made clear that it is the special relationship the United States enjoys with Israel that makes us the only party in the world with the potential to help end this centuries-old conflict. I view it as not only a duty but an honor to make sure that this time these seeds take hold.
"I call on Senators Lieberman and Kerry to lay out a constructive vision of how they would hope to carry on the legacy of Bill Clinton and Yitzhak Rabin as peacemakers and specifically how they would define the U.S. role under their leadership to recreate the hope and the promise of the peace process of ten years ago."


What Dean really said about Hamas

posted by annatopia at Saturday, September 13, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
Hamas as soldiers? Barbs from John Kerry? FAUX "news" has done it again. The lying liars misreported one of Dean's statements. Now first of all, I don't understand why anyone would take at face value a slanderous charge coming from a network that recently won a lawsuit that gave them the go-ahead to LIE to the public... But anyway... Here is the full remark that all this contention is based upon:
"There is a war going on in the Middle East, and members of Hamas are soldiers in that war, and, therefore, it seems to me that they are going to be casualties if they are going to make war."

Interpret the comment for yourself, but I just don't see anything controversial in his full remarks. Taken out of context it sounds bad, but when you get the full picture, well... what's the big freakin' deal with calling it like it is?
The problem is that FAUX only reported the following: "There is a war going on in the Middle East, and members of Hamas are soldiers in that war." Ah yes, the old "leave the rest of the remarks on the cutting room floor" move. Those folks at FAUX, wow, they really hold themselves to higher standards of journalism don't they?
I also think it's pretty damned sad that the other campaigns (I'm looking at you, Jim Jordan) take anything said on FAUX at face value. The problem with them doing so is that is legitimises the distortions that spew forth from the mouths of the FAUX talking heads. No Democratic contender should be giving away freebies to FAUX, because - get a clue guys - FAUX isn't going to be our friend during the election. If you try and curry favor with them now, it won't matter because in the end they'll turn on you. And if you legitimise their actions, they'll throw it back in your face come election time. I mean come on! They are shills for the GOP. They don't like Democrats and they won't tell the truth. They are lying liars and they distort the news to serve their own purposes.

update: More on this from The Likely Story, who kindly provides us a link to the FAUX distortion of Dean's remarks.


Dean, Pelosi Find Agreement

posted by Christopher at Saturday, September 13, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
Dean's opponents are rapidly finding that simply jumping on every word the frontrunner says will not pay dividends - either in terms of public policy, or public awareness. That game can rapidly backfire, and be turned against other candidates - especially when the general meaning of a candidate's statement should be clear (as was the case when Dean said we should be "even-handed" in our negotiations. I think for most of us it was clear he was simply referring to being an "honest broker" at the negotiating table, rather than saying that we should radically alter our existing relationship with Israel and put US relations with Israel and the Palestinians on equal footing... clearly that was not the intent). Is there anyone out there who really believes that Dean would question Israel's right to exist? Clearly, Pelosi quickly realized this was not the case and has shifted on the issue and now says she is in accord with Gov. Dean.

The other candidates should focus more on finding their own messages (and, ahem, finding their own styles) rather than simply trying to parse and spin every word out of Dean's mouth. The fruits of that approach are short-lived (as this article shows), and will not ultimately win over new voters to their candidates. Rather, I suspect negative campaigning simply turns voters off.

Friday, September 12, 2003


New Deansbury: Flash Mob for Dean!

posted by G at Friday, September 12, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
Click for the cartoon. It describes a "Flash Mobs for Dean" event this Saturday, Sept. 13, 10:35 a.m. at the foot of the Space Needle in Seattle.

It is already listed as an upcoming event at Seattle for Dean. If you're in the Seattle area, be a part of the first Dean event planned by Doonesbury! E-mail your friends and let them know it's happening!


If Not Dean, Who?

posted by G at Friday, September 12, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
Excerpts from an article by Richard Blow, former executive editor of George Magazine:
If the pundits have been consistent about one thing in this campaign, it's the argument that the Democrats will get slaughtered if Howard Dean is their presidential nominee.

He's not a national candidate, they say. He's too left-wing. He doesn't have enough foreign policy experience. By running as the centrist, tough-on-terrorism candidate, George W. Bush would beat Dean like a drum.

Or so they say.

But the Dean campaign has brought such unexpected energy into the Democratic primary that the Dems now have an entirely different problem: If Dean loses, the party will probably lose in November 2004.
Click to read the whole thing.



posted by annatopia at Friday, September 12, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
Ever since I read that damned Pelosi letter, my gears have been grinding. I thought about how the DLC used to attack Dean, then remembered when we found out that From and Reed were working for Lieberman and Edwards. Hence, anything that they spout is now taken with a grain of salt. So, about those congresspeople that signed the Pelosi letter...

Nancy Pelosi - House Min. Leader, California 8th
Howard L. Berman - California 28th
Robert Matsui - California 5th
Steny Hoyer - Maryland 5th
Nita Lowey - New York 18th
Chet Edwards - Texas 11th
Ben Cardin - Maryland 3rd
Chris Bell - Texas 25th
C.A. Dutch Ruppersberger - Maryland 2nd
Harold Ford, Jr. - Tennessee 9th
Steve Rothman - New Jersey 9th
Alcee Hastings - Florida 23rd

Interesting, isn't it? Conspicuously absent is the signature of Rep. Robert Wexler (19th District, FLA), a known Israeli hawk. One might logically conclude that if what Dean said was really so outrageous and so bad for Israel, that Wexler would have agreed and signed the letter.
On top of that, my congressman, Rep Martin Frost (24th District, Texas) signed the letter. This should particularly irk Texas for Dean volunteers, because Frost is one of the people about to lose his job due to the Delay-led redistricting power play. Considering that many rank and file Texas democrats and local Dean supporters have been out on the street protesting, sending food and other goodies to our Killer Ds, and supporting the anti-redistricting effort in any way we can, this is a slap in the face.

As for the other signers, go google it for yourself, because if I posted my results it would take up this whole page. So what I'm saying is that most of these people have ulterior motives. Either they've signed on to another contender, or they haven't taken the time to truly research Dean's positions on the Middle East. Get a clue, congresscritters.

Oh, and while you were so busy drafting this letter and running around getting signatories, didn't you have something better to do? Oh, like, I dunno... maybe opposing Bush? Maybe helping to defeat the DC vouchers proposal? Maybe conducting an investigation into 9/11 or pre-war intelligence? Ah, but I guess helping elect your endorsee is much more important than conducting the peoples' business.

And I wonder if those congresscritters have ever heard of Rabbi Michael Lerner, a Californian who is a well respected member of the Jewish community and published author. Rabbi Lerner's organisation made a similar plea for "even-handedness" in it's proposal for mideast peace. I wonder... do these congresscritters disagree with the Rabbi as well? - New information about Lerner led me to strike this part of the entry - Anna.

Here is a link to the online form so you can write these congresscritters. And here's the number for the Congressional switchboard: 1-800-839-5276.


open thread: Veep Poll

posted by Aziz P. at Friday, September 12, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
Time for another VEEP poll! cast your vote and explain your choice in the comments!

Here's the major media coverage of the Dean-Clark "tour of the horizon" : Washington Post, Associated Press (via WaPo), and the New York Times.


Must-read Krugman today

posted by G at Friday, September 12, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
Now it has all gone wrong. The deficit is about to go above half a trillion dollars, the economy is still losing jobs, the triumph in Iraq has turned to dust and ashes, and Mr. Bush's poll numbers are at or below their pre-9/11 levels.

Nor can the members of this administration simply lose like gentlemen. For one thing, that's not how they operate. Furthermore, everything suggests that there are major scandals - involving energy policy, environmental policy, Iraq contracts and cooked intelligence - that would burst into the light of day if the current management lost its grip on power. So these people must win, at any cost.

The result, clearly, will be an ugly, bitter campaign - probably the nastiest of modern American history. Four months ago it seemed that the 2004 campaign would be all slow-mo films of Mr. Bush in his flight suit. But at this point, it's likely to be pictures of Howard Dean or Wesley Clark that morph into Saddam Hussein. And Donald Rumsfeld has already rolled out the stab-in-the-back argument: if you criticize the administration, you're lending aid and comfort to the enemy.

This political ugliness will take its toll on policy, too. The administration's infallibility complex - its inability to admit ever making a mistake - will get even worse. And I disagree with those who think the administration can claim infallibility even while practicing policy flexibility: on major issues, such as taxes or Iraq, any sensible policy would too obviously be an implicit admission that previous policies had failed.

In other words, if you thought the last two years were bad, just wait: it's about to get worse. A lot worse.
I say "Bring it on."


NY Times on Israel and Dean

posted by Trammell at Friday, September 12, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
Editorial from The New York Times:
[...] In Israel itself, there are 1.3 million Arabs and 5.4 million Jews. This means that the number of Jews and Arabs living between the Mediterranean Sea and the Jordan River — in Israel and the occupied lands — is approaching parity. By 2020, Jews will be a minority. The longer Israelis continue to settle in the West Bank and Gaza, the harder it will be to cleanly divide the land between two nations with separate identities. Talk of two states will end. Two options will remain: an apartheid state run by a heavily armed Jewish minority, or a new political entity without a Jewish identity.

The conclusion is clear. Israel must begin to plan its exit from the West Bank and Gaza not only to permit the creation of a viable, contiguous Palestinian state but to preserve its own future. Polls show that most Israelis understand. They do not want to drain their treasury and lose their children to protect West Bank settlements. At the Democratic presidential debate on Tuesday night, Senator Joseph Lieberman criticized former Gov. Howard Dean for calling on Israel to dismantle most of its settlements. "That's up to the parties in their negotiations, not for us to tell them," the senator said.

We strongly disagree. True support for Israel means helping it see through its pain and rage to its own best interest. You do not have to believe in Mr. Arafat's sincerity or the Palestinians' good will to grasp the need for a radical course shift. You need only understand the meaning of self-preservation.
NON-RELATED NOTE: I have some family stuff to deal with for a few days, my Ma has some serious health problems. I'll be around when I can and should be back to blogging next week -- though I'll try to do a late-night post or two. Please keep us in your thoughts -- and prayers, too, if you are the prayin' type. Thanks much, - Scott

Thursday, September 11, 2003


Libertarians for Dean Blog

posted by Aziz P. at Thursday, September 11, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
Head over to the Libertarians for Dean blog and wish them success!


a house divided

posted by Aziz P. at Thursday, September 11, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
It was encouraging to see DNC Chairman Terry McAuliffe instruct the DLC to cease their attacks upon Dean. Speaking on Meet the Press, McAuliffe said he would support a Dean candidacy, so it's clear that the idea of Dean being the nominee has become accepted fact. But on the other hand, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi has attacked Dean, joining a smear campaign by House Democrats against Dean for the Israel issue.

If the Democrats can't show unity, then they are dead. Dean needs the party infrastructure to win - we have a great grassroots effort, but we can't do it alone. There is a common threat, not just to Democrats, but even to Libertarians and true fiscal conservatives - and it is clear that there's only one candidate who can marshall the requisite Coalition of the Voting. But if a Democrat, especially in a position of leadership such as Pelosi, can't find something nice to say about the man who might well be the nominee, then they shouldn't say anything at all.


Dean: send Clinton to the Middle East

posted by Aziz P. at Thursday, September 11, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
On CNN yesterday, Dean not only defended himself ably against Lieberman's "despicable" desperation ploy, but also threw a curveball to Bush:

The former Vermont governor said criticism of his remarks by presidential rival Sen. Joseph Lieberman was a "despicable" attempt to divide the Democratic Party, which has long enjoyed the support of many Jewish voters.

"We do have a special relationship with Israel. We would defend Israel if necessary. I think that is well-known," he told CNN. "However, we are also the only country capable of bringing peace to the Middle East, and when we sit at the negotiating table, we do have to have the trust of both sides or we will never succeed."

Dean also called on President Bush to "swallow his pride" and send former President Bill Clinton to the Middle East to salvage the peace process.

"I think Bill Clinton is the president who has come the closest to bringing Israelis and Palestinians together," he said. "Bill Clinton may just be the person we need to put those negotiations back on track."


What Dreams May Come?

posted by Trammell at Thursday, September 11, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
No, you are not dreaming, you are awake, and you are reading a blog post at Dean Nation. Do not pinch yourself, there is no need, simply read on:
Gen. Clark Reportedly Is Asked to Join Dean

By Jim VandeHei and Dan Balz, The Washington Post
Thursday, September 11, 2003

Democratic presidential candidate Howard Dean has asked retired Army Gen. Wesley Clark to join his campaign, if the former NATO commander does not jump into the race himself next week, and the two men discussed the vice presidency at a weekend meeting in California, sources familiar with the discussions said.

Clark, in a telephone interview yesterday, said he did not want to comment about the private meeting. Asked about reports that the two men had discussed a wide range of issues, including endorsing Dean, joining the campaign, possible roles in a Dean administration and the vice presidency, he said only, "It was a complete tour of the horizon."

Later, an adviser quoted Clark as saying, "I have only one decision to make: Will I seek the presidency?"

It was the fourth time Dean and Clark have met face-to-face to discuss the campaign. No decisions were made at the California meeting because Clark is still considering a run for president. Clark is scheduled to make a speech Sept.19 at the University of Iowa, when many political insiders expect him to announce his intentions.

"Most of our conversations have been around my getting advice on defense, and sometime he asks me about domestic issues," Dean said in an interview yesterday. "This is a guy I like a lot. I think he's certainly going to be on everybody's list if he's not the presidential nominee himself."Dean declined to discuss their private conversations.
Read the rest here. You may now resume your regularly scheduled morning, and have a great day!

Wednesday, September 10, 2003


Invite for America

posted by Matt Singer at Wednesday, September 10, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
If you haven't yet, go use the Invite tool a DFA. Keep growing and keep us proud.


NOW Endorsed The Wrong Candidate

posted by Editor at Wednesday, September 10, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
From an Op Ed in the Hartford Courant. It is written by a Connecticut supporter of Howard Dean who is the webmaster for the Connecticut chapter of the National Organization for Women and sits on its board.
Recently, the National Organization for Women endorsed Carol Moseley Braun for president. I'm inspired by her intelligence, wit and articulate speech, but Carol Moseley Braun hasn't shown me the criteria I'm looking for in a president today.

Thanks to President Bush's arrogance, greed and reckless adventures abroad, this country is heading toward a series of crises that we haven't seen since the Depression. In these tumultuous times, NOW would have been wiser to have endorsed a "woman's man," Howard Dean, and not a woman for president.


Governor Howard Dean Says House GOP Leaders' Action Marks New Low

posted by Editor at Wednesday, September 10, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
From Dean for America...
September 10, 2003


Burlington – Democratic Presidential candidate Howard Dean today condemned House Republican leaders for scheduling a crucial vote on and then approving the first federally imposed school voucher program for the District of Columbia last night:

"Scheduling a vote on school vouchers to take place at the exact hour of the Democratic Presidential debate sponsored by the Congressional Black Caucus marks a new low for the Republican Party.

"It is outrageous that Tom Delay would schedule a vote of such critical importance to the children and the public school system of the District of Columbia knowing full well that two House members running for President as well as the members of the Congressional Black Caucus were scheduled to be out of town for a presidential debate.

"This is just another example of the divisive, underhanded tactics that have become the signature trademark of the Republican-controlled House. Whether in their attempts to reverse freely held elections as in California or to grab power through unprecedented redistricting in Texas, the right wing of the Republican party continues to demonstrate what low regard they have for the democratic process.

"Beyond my outrage at their tactics, I am deeply opposed to the result of this vote which would impose a voucher system on a local school district. I strongly oppose voucher programs which divert taxpayer money to private schools and weaken our public school system."



Dean Statement on Overtime Pay

posted by Editor at Wednesday, September 10, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
From Dean for America...
Sept. 10, 2003


I applaud Senator Harkin's victory today on behalf of working men and women across the country. Passage of his amendment to stop the Bush Administration's new overtime rules is a welcome show of support for the forty hours work week and other vital labor protections.

The overtime regulation is only the latest in a series of anti-worker policies put forward by this Administration. They dismantled the ergonomics rule, fought an increase in the minimum wage and now they want to cut overtime pay. With the Harkin amendment, Democrats are fighting back. I urge House-Senate negotiators
to preserve the Harkin amendment in conference.



No News = Good News?,1282,-3132238,00.html

posted by Trammell at Wednesday, September 10, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
Union to Wait on Presidental Endorsement

By LEIGH STROPE, AP Labor Writer

WASHINGTON (AP) - The largest union in the AFL-CIO is holding off on making a presidential endorsement, although John Edwards surged from unknown to contender while John Kerry stumbled.

The 1.6 million-member Service Employees International Union decided after a three-day meeting to wait before backing one of the nine Democratic presidential candidates.

"Even though many members leave this conference with a clearer idea of which candidate they like, over 60 percent of them are still not ready for their union to make an endorsement, a sentiment shared by their fellow members across the country,'' SEIU President Andy Stern said.

Eight of the nine Democrats vying to challenge President Bush next year addressed SEIU's conference Monday. Afterward, Edwards, the North Carolina senator, catapulted into the top tier while Kerry, the Massachusetts senator, dropped out of the top three.

Former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean and Rep. Dick Gephardt of Missouri, the traditional favorite of labor, remained on the list of three. Rankings and vote totals were not given.


"Dean, Dean, Dean, Dean, Dean..."

posted by Trammell at Wednesday, September 10, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
Well, the news today is all "Dean, Dean, Dean, Dean, Dean..." and that 's not all that's "Dean, Dean, Dean, Dean, Dean..."

Today's Deanesbury here is Dean, Dean, Dean!

And this, from The New York Times:
The dominance that Dr. Dean has enjoyed, and the corresponding exasperation that has caused his rivals, was clear even before the candidates sat down in Baltimore tonight. Senator Kerry was talking to reporters before the debate here, where he was repeatedly questioned about Dr. Dean's standing in the race and things that he had said.

After Mr. Kerry finished his news conference and began walking away with an aide, David Wade, a live microphone picked him up muttering with evident annoyance: "Dean, Dean, Dean, Dean."
And a new line of t-shirts, rugbies, thongs, baby-bibs mugs and mousepads over at Cafe Shops:

Now before ya'll yell at me, remember: this site is about all things Dean. I don't make this stuff up -- I just report it back to a Dean Nation. And let's face it, this stuff is just "Dean, Dean, Dean, Dean, Dean!"

UPDATE: This update has been deleted by the author, as it was needlessly antagonistic. Apologies. - Scott


Economists for Dean

posted by G at Wednesday, September 10, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
They're just getting started. Head over to their blog and give them some supporting words in the comments!


Rick Rescorla

posted by Aziz P. at Wednesday, September 10, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
It doesn't matter what you're doing right now. Stop. And go read this biography of Rick Rescorla, one of the greatest American heroes in our history. Rick Rescorla died on 9-11-01, but not as a victim, as a hero, who helped save the lives of 2600 people that day.


LGF partisans outraged by fairness

posted by Aziz P. at Wednesday, September 10, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
You'll need a strong stomach before you click on this link. The comment community at Little Green Footballs is a deeply diseased place. But it is interesting to see the raection of the extreme Israeli partisan crowd to Dean's statement of principle. I think that the attitudes on display here - which surely have their mirror on the Palestinian-supporter side - are exactly the issue that Dean is addressing in his calls for fairness.


Live by the olive branch, die by the olive branch

posted by Trammell at Wednesday, September 10, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
Slate's William Saletan on Dean and the debate:
Howard Dean's performance was near-perfect. Strategically, Dean is way ahead of the pack. He has fulfilled the affirmative part of the campaign: giving people enough reasons to vote for him. Now he has the luxury of focusing on the negative part: dispelling the reasons to vote against him. Accordingly, his preparation for the last two debates seems to have focused on acting presidential and conveying competence in military and foreign policy. Tonight he accomplished both. He was at ease and in command. Rectifying his performance in Albuquerque, he projected confidence without constipation.

Dean started by answering an Iraq question with references to North Korea, Iranian-backed Shiite fundamentalists, and Bush's 18-month absence from the Israeli-Palestinian standoff. As in Albuquerque, he repeatedly emphasized presidential "judgment." To head off soft-on-defense charges, he said he wouldn't withdraw U.S. troops from Iraq immediately, since "we cannot lose the peace." He even steered his closing statement away from the economy to defense—a maneuver that's highly unconventional for a Democratic governor seeking the presidency during a recession but consistent with Dean's current strategy of shoring up his weak suits rather than playing his strong ones.

The big test came half an hour into the debate, when panelist Juan Williams asked Dean whether his recent comments about not taking sides between Israel and the Palestinians signaled an intention to curb U.S. support for Israel. "Of course I don't mean any such thing," Dean replied. In previous debates, Dean has gotten angry and defensive in answering such questions. This time, he was cool as a cucumber, laying out his case that the United States must be "a credible negotiator" to the Palestinians as well.

Williams turned to Joe Lieberman, who proceeded to accuse Dean of betraying American values and interests by walking away from the U.S. alliance with Israel, specifically by saying that Israel must dismantle many settlements in the West Bank. Dean's response was perfect. "I'm disappointed in Joe," he said, more in sorrow than in anger. "My position on Israel is exactly the same as Bill Clinton's." Lieberman, who was standing next to Dean, interjected that this wasn't true, but Dean, without turning to Lieberman or raising his voice, politely continued, "Excuse me, Joe. I didn't interrupt you, and I'd appreciate it if you didn't interrupt me." Dean proceeded to make his case for an "honest broker" role, concluding, without rancor, "It doesn't help, Joe, to demagogue this issue. We're all Democrats. We need to beat George Bush so we can have peace in the Middle East."

In some ways, the exchange encapsulated the massive shift that has taken place during the campaign. If the candidates had debated a year ago, Lieberman would have been the heir apparent, and Dean would have been the one fighting for attention. Dean would have done the attacking, and Lieberman would have shaken his head in disappointment at such demagoguery. Surely, Lieberman would have concluded with the same plea to unite the party against Bush. Oh, well. Live by the olive branch, die by the olive branch.
Nope folks, the press just doesn't get much better than this.

Tuesday, September 09, 2003


Billmon Endorses Dean!

posted by Trammell at Tuesday, September 09, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
Howard Dean just picked up a major endorsement -- from super-blogger Billmon at Whiskey Bar. Now, if we could just get Andrew Sullivan! Billmon: Welcome, Friend!
Vote for Dean

For what it's worth (which probably isn't much) Howard Dean now has Whiskey Bar's endorsement for the Democratic presidential nomination.

Why? Because the good doctor has dared to utter the unmentionable truth: That the United States simply cannot afford to continue its current policy of absolute, unqualified support of the state of Israel.

And boy, is he taking heat for it [...] So sign me up, put my name down, take the roll, whatever. I'm enlisting in Dr. Dean's Army.
It's a great, long post -- you can read the whole thing here!


Snitched Out

posted by Trammell at Tuesday, September 09, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
Quick note, MSNBC's Felix Schein, embedded reporter with the Dean campaign, picked up Dean Nation's Felix the Snitch item and reported it in his column. He also sent a nice thank you note. He calls it the "campaign blog" -- I already sent him the correction. You can check out all of Felix's recent reports from the road here. Thanks for the mention, Felix -- and hey, add some hyperlinks to those reports!


Kerry's Slip Up

posted by Editor at Tuesday, September 09, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
While at is Ranch in California preparing for his weekly radio address, Ronald Reagan made a joke about launching a nuclear attack against the Soviet Union when testing his microphone. On a radio call in show, Bill Clinton let a profanity out when he thought he was off the air. While at a campaign event, George Bush's microphone picked up him calling a New York Times reporter a profanity. It seems that politicians never remember the power of what Strom Thurmond called "The Machine" to pick up their words.

Did anybody see Fox News today only hours before the debate? After speaking with reporters Sen. John Kerry was apparently upset at the amount of attention Gov. Dean is getting - even in the forms of questions at his press conference. Kerry is seen leaving the scene and mutters "Dean, Dean, Dean," under his breath. A mic, still pinned to his clothes, picks it up loud and clear. Check out the clip for yourself. Mic check, Mr. Kerry. Mic check.


Must Read Article of the Day

posted by Editor at Tuesday, September 09, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
(Yeah, I'm going post happy today, but that's what happens when you largely take a few weeks off.) In case you missed it, in the pre-debate category I think Howard Kurt'z Media Notes in the Washington Post wins Matt's "Must Read Column of the Day" Award. A snippet:
Even Howard Dean's detractors now believe he's for real.

Real as in: Scoff all you want, this guy actually could be president.


The other side is getting worried, reports USA Today:

"Republican Party officials and political advisers to President Bush admit that they underestimated Democratic presidential candidate Howard Dean and say they now consider him a formidable potential adversary.

"Some Bush allies say he reminds them of another insurgent candidate who once bedeviled Bush: Arizona Sen. John McCain. His wins in Republican primary elections in New Hampshire and Michigan rattled Bush's 2000 campaign. . . .

"No top Republican Party, White House or Bush campaign official wanted to be identified talking about Dean, but he's as hot a topic inside the Bush camp as he is among his Democratic rivals.

"How worried is the Bush team? One campaign official notes that Dean is renting lots of cars in Iowa -- evidence that Bush supporters in the state are keeping an eye on him and his campaign spending."

Counting the cars! Now that's oppo.


Dean: Two Senators Leaving Votes Behind

posted by Editor at Tuesday, September 09, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
From Dean for America...
September 9, 2003


Tonight, Senator Kerry and Senator Edwards boasted of how they would make education a priority in this nation. Both trumpeted their support for No Child Left Behind while asking where the funding went.

Kerry: “We have a President who’s walked away from them, broken his promise and refused to fund No Child Left Behind. I believe that we deserve a President that recognizes until you have equality of education in America, until the federal government is prepared to make up the difference in funding, we do not have a prayer at making real the full promise of our country.

Edwards: “By the way, this no child left behind, this president is leaving millions of kids behind every single day.”

However, Senators Kerry and Edwards both missed the vote to fully fund our schools.

Neither was present on March 19, 2003 to cast a vote that would have fully funded NCLB. (Murray Amendment #284, NCLB) With two more democratic votes – one from Kerry and one from Edwards – the vote would have been a tie, forcing Dick Cheney to clearly indicate the true extent of the administration’s “commitment” to NCLB.

Edwards’ campaign has since tried to spin their candidate’s truancy by claiming that a week later, a "similar vote came up, and authorization of full funding passed with Edwards' support.” Unfortunately, the vote Edwards and Kerry did make the following week was not for full funding, but for only bits and pieces of education funding. The opportunity to win full funding had, unfortunately, already passed.

So in short, if our nation’s children are not getting the quality education that they deserve, it’s partly because this March, Kerry and Edwards were off somewhere playing hooky.




posted by Editor at Tuesday, September 09, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
From Dean for America...
September 9, 2003


Tonight, Governor Dean reiterated his consistent support for the unique and special relationship that the United States enjoys with Israel. Israel is and will remain one of the closest allies of the United States and is a model for democracy in a troubled region.

The Democratic Party has been united in its support for Israel for 54 years since the time of Harry Truman, and the Governor is disappointed that Senator Lieberman would try to create division within our party where there is none.

Democrats need to be united in their focus on the failures of the Bush administration in foreign affairs generally and the Middle East in particular.



2nd Debate: Open Thread

posted by Editor at Tuesday, September 09, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
I thought we'd get the ball rolling on this even before the debate ends. How about Sen. Joe getting boos for attacking Dean?

UPDATE (MIDNIGHT): The debate is being re-aired on Fox News now. If you missed it, tune in.


Maryland Endorsements

posted by Editor at Tuesday, September 09, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
My college roommate Brad calls his adopted home of Maryland, "the most progressive state in the nation."

From Dean for America...
September 9, 2003

Maryland Officials Endorse Gov. Howard Dean
Elected Officials Join some 6,000 Maryland Volunteers in “People-Powered” Grassroots Campaign

College Park, MD – Last night at a rally in College Park, nearly five months before the primary season begins, Presidential candidate Governor Howard Dean received the endorsements of 35 elected officials from across the State of

“The reasons we have all these endorsements are simple - Governor Howard Dean’s frank style and his positions on the critical issues of our time,” said Terry Lierman, Maryland for Dean Coordinator and national finance co-chair. “He has
drawn not just tremendous grassroots support in Maryland and across America but, the elected leaders closest to the people are enthusiastic as well.”

Nearly 6,000 Marylanders have already registered as volunteers at joining over 350,000 who have registered nationwide for the campaign they’ve come to know as “People-Powered Howard.”

“Howard Dean has attracted devotion from across the spectrum – it is diverse, broad and deep and the more people who discover what his presidency will mean to every American from every walk of life, the more support he gets,” says Maryland Del. Kurt Anderson of Baltimore City.

“He speaks to an America that is just, inclusive and common sense and that resonates will everyone, especially those in the Latino community,” says Maryland Del. Ana Sol Gutierrez of Montgomery County.

“There has never been another Democrat who has had this much grassroots support in any campaign in American history,” says Maryland Del. Peter Franchot, an early supporter of Gov. Dean who is co-coordinating the endorsement process in Maryland.

“This support continues to grow at a rapid pace and while that mean votes, it also means campaign contributions and almost unlimited buzz – the energy it takes to win,” says Walter Ludwig, Maryland for Dean Co-Coordinator.

For a list of those making endorsements, see the link above.

Monday, September 08, 2003


Dialing for Dean: Rush Says: Keep On Calling

posted by Trammell at Monday, September 08, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
Yes, they've gone from dismissive, to snide, to worried. Even the less-than-effervescent Rush Limbaugh is bubbling about Howard Dean -- in fact, lately, Limbaugh can't seem to open his mouth without saying "Dean" -- but here, I'll let Rush tell you in his own words:

"My friends, we have been discussing amongst ourselves here the Howard Dean operation. We have noticed a trend on this program over recent weeks, and I feel safe now in going public with our assumptions that we have made about this trend. I'm sure you're all familiar with the term "seminar caller." Seminar caller is actually a Democrat who has been trained somehow, some way, by the Democratic National Committee. They actually have put instructions in how to be a seminar caller on their website at times. And they advise such things as call these conservative hosts and praise them, and say you've been regular listeners, and you agree with most everything but just something recently has come up. And the seminar callers were quite easily spotted because they weren't able to carry it off much beyond 30 seconds at which time they reverted to normal and became just mean and angry and started calling names and spitting and then they'd hang up or something. They just couldn't carry it off. It got so prevalent that I would get e-mail from people, "Rush, that was a seminar caller that just happened." You became very sensitive to it.

"I think, ladies and gentlemen, you need to re-aim your antenna now for the new breed of seminar caller out there. Our most recent call, our last call to this program, we think, was a Howard Deanite, a Howard Dean seminar caller. The way we noticed this, whenever we get a call that is supportive of Howard Dean, these people are the politest callers we get, other than the normal conservative, "Hi Rush, how are you.” call. But from people who are calling to disagree and/or express their support for Howard Dean, they are universally polite, they say they've been listening for quite a while, they compliment me to the end of the world - I mean "your intellectual inspiration and stimulation on this program, Mr. Limbaugh, I've been treated to it five, ten years, whatever, very encouraging to me. You said something I need you to clarify for me. Howard Dean is saying…" and then they go into a rosy description of Howard Dean, what Howard Dean says, what he means. And really these people are pretty smart. They're keeping Dean's name on this program. They're doing it in a way that nobody associated with Dean turns you off. I mean, these Deanites are not mean. They're not negative, they are quite intelligent sounding, and they're very deferential and polite. But what they always do is manage to explain a Howard Dean position in the most reasonable way possible and then ask for my reaction to it. They don't argue with me about it, they do not call names, they are not confrontational at all.They're not even provocative in a negative sense, and it's starting to happen with an increased frequency or an increasing frequency.

"I think the ultimate aim, of course, is twofold. It’s to keep the Dean name alive and prominent on this program, and they also do so in a way that presents themselves and thus supporters of Howard Dean in a totally reasonable, intelligent, and civilized way. And they never tell me I'm wrong about anything. They never, ever call up with belligerence and say "you this,” they say, "Perhaps you have misunderstood one of Howard Dean's positions." And then they restate it to me in a way that may help you and me both to understand what Howard Dean really thinks about this particular issue and the obvious objective here to represent Howard Dean constantly on this program, to have his name mentioned and by virtue of that happening, whenever one of these people calls, his supporters are always going to be heard as reasonable, polite, thoughtful, thinking, all these things, which is in contrast to the way the Democrats are talking about Dean. Forget what I'm saying. But the Democratic candidates are out there portraying this guy as a wacko leftist about to drive the party off the cliff and all that.

"So it's a very sophisticated campaign that the Dean campaign has mounted here as far as getting their supporters on this program, and of course they know that people who disagree with me are at the top of the list, so if they get through, then they get on the air. We haven't changed that rule. If you disagree, we move you to the top of the line. We've always had that as a policy. So in honor of those of you that we know are out there - and, by the way, this is not meant as a criticism of any of you Deanites. We're not trying to stop you from calling. We don't want to intimidate you. I'm just observing. I, it's a stretch here, could be wrong. We don't think so. You're not supposed to stop calling. Don't think that the jig's up, the cover is blown. Keep calling." [ the rest here...]

NOTE: Too funny. I wonder how many of these calls are happening on Flood the Zone Fridays? And, I wonder another thing: how many of these folks actually are regular Limbaugh listeners who simply like Howard Dean? I mean, "sophisticated operation?" One thing's for sure: the campaign (and no group I know of beyond Flood the Zone) is in any way coordinating calls, especially to Limbaugh specifically. What's really going on here? Freaky.


Felix the Snitch

posted by Trammell at Monday, September 08, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
Speaking of Daily Reads, have any of you checked out the MSNBC Campaign Embeds page? It's pretty cool, and as the primary heats up, I've a feeling these folks are gonna be breaking lots of news. The embed's reports also appear in NBC's First Read, their political unit's answer to The Note though it's hardly a real competitor, not yet -- you can read my mini-review at Points West. The embeds will, and are, popping up on all manner of NBC and MSNBC news programs, including Hardball and others, they are a great bunch of young reporters.

In any event, the Dean Embed is one Felix Schein. Good-looking and cheerful, he seems consistently thrilled to be assigned to the most exciting campaign in modern history. Yes, Felix, that was a little butt-kissing -- sorry. He also was the first embed (that I know of) to break some real news:
The Dean camp was fairly pleased with the outcome of the debate. They conceded that Dick Gephardt was the clear winner, but felt they held their ground and kept their momentum.
These two sentences showed up in news reports far and wide, not just on NBC. In fact, Gephardt sent out a fundraising appeal by e-mail with this quote in it that a Dean National was nice enough to forward over to us at Dean Nation! I had no idea that Gephardt sought Dean's approval to this degree, or that he held Dean's opinion in such high regard! Wow.

From Felix's post yesterday (it reads kinda like a blog):

On a final note, the campaign has dubbed their next major project A September to Remember, Thirty Days That Change Politics. Dividing the month into three 10-day sections, the idea is to build the Dean community in the first 10 days, to work on outreach the second 10 days, and show grassroots strength in the final 10 days, raising money and expanding the volunteer network to 450,000 people being the obvious goals. Of note is Sept. 20, when the campaign plans to place supporters on highway overpasses, on street corners, and in the community with signs. Like the Sleepless Summer Tour, this again will be an opportunity for the campaign to demonstrate the depth of its grassroots network and to make a final push for those third quarter dollars.
I'm sure we'll be hearing quite a bit from Felix the Snitch -- and of course I mean that playfully, Mr. Schein. So welcome, Felix, and a big "hi-how-ya-doin" from Dean Nation! You can check out more on all the MSNBC Embeds here --- and save it as a fave.


Sour Note

posted by Trammell at Monday, September 08, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
Okay, I love The Note, but this is a load of crap:
We're thinking of the political press's ability to resist treating Howard Dean like the Second Coming; the foreign press's unwillingness to let California reporters ask any questions at Schwarzenegger press conferences; and all these Democratic strategists wringing their hands about how and whether to attack Howard Dean.
Umm, the Second Coming of what? McGovern? Sure, we've had some good press lately, but we have fought for it -- and fought hard. Of all sources, The Note knows this quite well.
We have no clue what will cause Howard Dean to ever be held to the same standard for consistency, clarity, and accuracy as the other leading Democratic presidential candidates, but whatever it's going to take hasn't kicked in yet.
Are the other candidates being held to some standard that we are not? Most of the articles I've read lately have been taking us to task -- or at the least regurgitating the talking points from our rivals -- on various inconsistencies and/or shifts in position. And then, the example they use is.....
Saturday, standing side by side with Gray Davis, Dean asserted that the White House was involved in orchestrating and pushing the California recall effort. Later, under questioning, Dean admitted that he had no evidence but that it simply was the kind of thing he believed the White House habitually does.

The Note is breathless.
Now, come on! As I pointed out here last Thursday, the "Four R's" talking points for ALL the Dem candidates has been reported, by no less than Bill Schneider of Inside Politics. Was The Note napping? Further, Dean really said no more and no less than Davis has said, than Clinton has said, than many other Dems have said, and will continue to say, for some time to come. But election season campaign rhetoric aside, why is The Note "breathless?" Dean made the statement, and then was asked by a reporter to clarify -- so where is the "special" treatment? I guess when it comes to Dean, The Note, for reasons unknowable, was just having a bad hair day -- but certainly this Note is hardly on key.

UPDATE: I was going to cross-post this at DDF but having tech issues. You can write The Note at just to let them know we are reading and watching and we expect a much higher quality of them than almost anyone because we respect them so much. Just like the press with Dean of late, we hold them to a higher standard.


Dean reaction to Bush speech

posted by Aziz P. at Monday, September 08, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
"In 15 minutes, he attempted to make up for 15 months of misleading the American people and 15 weeks of mismanaging the reconstruction," he said.

'nuff said.


Dean a formidable foe

posted by Aziz P. at Monday, September 08, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
Note that few strategists want to go on the record as saying so - but the GOP establishment has recognized that Dean is the true threat.

WASHINGTON — Republican Party officials and political advisers to President Bush admit that they underestimated Democratic presidential candidate Howard Dean and say they now consider him a formidable potential adversary.
Interviews with 15 GOP leaders found consensus on one point: If Dean wins the first two contests, Iowa's caucuses Jan. 19 and New Hampshire's primary, he'll win the nomination.

Two months ago, Karl Rove, Bush's top political aide, watched Dean supporters marching in a parade July 4 in Washington and said to a friend, "That's the one we want." Exhorting fellow parade watchers, Rove yelled, "Come on, everybody! Go, Howard Dean!"

The thinking then was that the former Vermont governor was too liberal and too obscure to be a threat. Bush allies were more worried about Kerry, North Carolina Sen. John Edwards and Missouri Rep. Richard Gephardt.

Few Republicans are cheering for Dean now. His fundraising — he collected $7.6 million in the second quarter of the year, outdoing his eight rivals — the appeal of his passionate attacks on Bush and his rise in the polls have revised their earlier opinions.
No top Republican Party, White House or Bush campaign official wanted to be identified talking about Dean, but he's as hot a topic inside the Bush camp as he is among his Democratic rivals.

How worried is the Bush team? One campaign official notes that Dean is renting lots of cars in Iowa — evidence that Bush supporters in the state are keeping an eye on him and his campaign spending.

UPDATE: The Weekly Standard weighs in. It's full of standard (false) talking points about liberal tendencies and supposed tax increases, but still acknowledges reality:

The word Vermonters use most often to describe Dean is "frugal." Coming into office amidst the early 1990s recession, he cut formerly sacrosanct welfare spending to keep the state out of debt. The Cato analysis shows that during Dean's first four years in office, Vermont's budget grew much more slowly than other states'. He cut income tax rates across the board (much as President Bush did). Although he raised overall business taxes, he approved millions of dollars' worth of incentives to lure smoke stacks back into the Green Mountain State. It was during these early years that the head of the state's powerful Progressive party called him "a very right-wing Democrat." And during a time when President Bush has been piling up mountains of debt in Washington and 47 governors face record budget deficits of their own, Dean admirably left Vermont with a $10.4 million surplus when he left office this past January--which would certainly be one of his trump cards against Bush. If Dean were ever elected president, I'm convinced he would be monomaniacal about balancing the budget--though certainly not in ways that would please conservatives.

Part of Dean's star appeal has been the refreshing genuineness of his campaign rhetoric, even when his ideas are cockeyed. By pledging to repeal the entire Bush tax cut--a move that would raise the average tax burden on middle income families with three kids by about $2,500 a year, Dean is attempting to prove that voters will swallow higher taxes to get more government largesse. In a recent debate, he confidently asserted that when working class voters saw his universal government-run health care plan, they would gladly pay for it. "If we're going to have a system of universal health care in America, we will have to pay more taxes," he said.

Of course, these are the kinds of unavoidable tough fiscal choices that voters should be asked to make, but that most politicians refuse to acknowledge. God save the country if voters actually buy into Dean's health care socialism, but at least he is honest about the sacrifices required. This is not a man who believes in the mythical free lunch.

Ever since that first meeting with Howard Dean some five years ago, I've been trying to think of what politician he most resembles. The former governor of a small state, he is charismatic, good looking, wonkish, craving of the spotlight, and capable of telling a room full of people precisely what they want to hear. The obvious answer recently hit me: Dean is Bill Clinton, but without the skirt-chasing.

Republicans are said to be salivating over the prospect of a Bush-Dean match-up. They shouldn't get carried away. Howard Dean, warns John McClaughry, has been "underestimated throughout his political career. He has an uncanny knack for finding where the political capital is stored and walking off with it." The trick for Dean is to ensure that the ultra-liberal positions he has taken in the primaries, which contradict his sometimes centrist record, don't cripple his ability to reach out to Middle American voters in a general election--should he make it that far. If he does, and then finds a way to zig-zag back toward the center, Howard Dean could be George W. Bush's worst nightmare.

Dean: more electable than Bush! (I hope that one makes the Daily Meme).


Dean: please SMILE

posted by Aziz P. at Monday, September 08, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
I just caight Dean's appearance on CBS and NBS this morning - he handled himself well, made a strong case, etc. But he didn't SMILE once!

The contrast between the sunny perkiness of the NBC anchors and Dean's dour mug was like night and day. These TV morning appearances arguably are more important than even his ad buys. He MUST use them to connect to the average public viewer, most of whom still don't know who he is.

SMILE, dammit! SMILE!!!!


Freepers in shock over Bush invoice

posted by Aziz P. at Monday, September 08, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
Bush's announcement last night that he wanted an additional $87,000,000,000 for Iraq (including some pittance for Afghanistan) has even shocked the Free Republic crowd. That thread is a goldmine of anti-Bush disparaging taglines.

Remember the "Iraqi oil pays for reconstrction" argument? I analyzed that fallacy back in April:

Suppose reconstruction costs $100 billion, and only takes 1 year. At $30 a barrel of oil, that amounts to 3 billion barrels (about 8 million barrels per day, or bbl/d). This is equal to Saudi Arabia's current output (and Iraq does not have anywhere near Saudi Arabia's reserves, nor the oil infrastructure to process and refine such a colossal amount of oil even if it did). In addition to the ludicrously cheap and quick estimate of the reconstruction cost and duration above, note that there is also an implicit assumption that every dollar of revenue will go to reconstruction cost, without any middlemen (which as anyone familiar with the oil industry knows, is a laughable assertion).

Back in April it was obvious that "oil pays" was nonsensical. Suddenly the media is surprised.


Edwards won't seek re-election

posted by Aziz P. at Monday, September 08, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
Edwards steps up to the plate:

John Edwards said he'll stick to one term in the U.S. Senate, convinced his presidential campaign is going well enough to bow out of the 2004 race for his seat.
"I will not seek re-election to the United States Senate, in order to devote all of my energy to running for president," Edwards wrote to North Carolina Democratic Party chairwoman Barbara Allen.
A timely decision became critical as U.S. Rep. Richard Burr (news, bio, voting record), R-N.C., announced he would seek the GOP nomination for the Senate and began campaigning, while potential Democratic candidates cooled their heels in deference to Edwards.
Edwards has no plans to step down from his Senate seat before his term ends in January 2005, Palmieri said, even if he wins the party nomination. Edwards plans a formal campaign announcement Sept. 16 in Robbins, where he spent his teenage years.

Note that unlike Dean, Edwards still has his day job, and retains his Senate seat. He just won't run for re-election. I think that this is an honorable move. But what's more important is that it cements Edwards as the Other Candidate - he's now the only one of the main challengers to Dean that has a real stake in winning.

Lieberman, Kerry, and Gephardt all want it both ways - they want to run for President, but don't want to risk teh safety of their seats in case of failure. That makes them cautious, keeps them from taking risks, and doesn't really give them the same level of drive that someone like Edwards or Dean would have, given that if the latter two lose, they are completely out of a job. And if you want to be President, you really need to want it.

At this point, I'm ready to make another one of my patented Aziz Wild-Ass Predictions (AWAP). Edwards and Dean will be the only candidates for the nomination, and the rest will drop out 1 month after South Carolina.

Lieberman is tanking - the base hates him, and his "Dean depression" remark was the worst-miscalculated Sister Souljah ever. Is there a single poll that shows him with a positive trend?

Kerry is fizzling out. His SC-carrier speech was about as symbolic as Bush's. And the campaign was ridiculed in Boston media for their inflated crowd estimates at his recent Fanueil Hall kickoff in Boston. Kerry still acts like he is the front-runner, expecting crowds to simply rally to his banner, desperately trying to ignore Dean away.

And Gephardt is strong in Iowa, but so is Dean. And given Dean's recent success with Labor, there simply isn't any certainty for the candidate. Watch for his poll numbers to be wea everywhere else.

The bottom line is that only Edwards has shown the real drive necessary to keep up with Dean. He's a worthy opponent and might even be deserving of a backbone award for his decision to commit himself to this race. And his decision really puts the other campaigns into perspective.

UPDATE: my mistake, Gephardt has also announced he won't seek re-election.

Sunday, September 07, 2003


See Dean Run

posted by Editor at Sunday, September 07, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
Take a look at the sign in the background and the buttons on the strikers shirts. This is from the New Haven Advocate's coverage on striking workers at Yale University. Gov. Dean met with the strikers.

Bring on the labor support!


Can Kerry Count?

posted by Matt Singer at Sunday, September 07, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
The Boston Globe isn't sure:
The business of crowd estimation was never the strong suit of any police department or, for that matter, any political campaign.

But it was downright laughable when the cops - and the Kerry campaign - tried to say there were 15,000 on hand for Kerry's Faneuil Hall announcement

Kerry, of all people, should remember a big crowd - the unions had so many workers at his 1996 debate with Gov. William F. Weld that the crowd stretched halfway down the sides of Quincy Market that night.

It didn't help matters that several media noted empty seats at the Wednesday event.

Of course all this comes after Kerry and ex-Boston Bruin Cam Neeley had to make personal telephone calls just to get a crowd on hand for the Boston "homecoming."

The Telegraph has its doubts too:
That Dean guy can sure draw a crowd

You have got to get state Rep. Jack Pratt, D-Walpole, to summarize his last weekend at home.

Pratt and Rep. McKim Mitchell, D-Chesterfield, decided to combine on a house party for former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean.

The scene was Pratt's home in the middle of town, which is accessible only by a two-lane road in and out.

A stunning 1,200 people showed up, one of the largest gatherings of any kind during the first-in-the-nation primary season.

"The candidate was 20 minutes late because he got stuck in his own traffic jam,'' Pratt quipped.

How about the local police chief, who couldn't find anyone else to work on Labor Day weekend and single-handedly had to figure out where to put more than 1,000 cars?

"I had said, 'Oh, only 200 or so would show up.' He let me have it at the end of that one,'' Pratt said.

On the other hand .

John Kerry didn't look like a man attending a coronation at his kickoff rally in Manchester on Wednesday afternoon.

More than 330 had committed to show up, yet far less than 250 were there and the crowd was chock full of the same Kerry devotee faces that go to every candidate event whether it's in Colebrook or Concord.

Kerry shut the event down after a flat, four-minute speech and ordered the buses headed off to Boston.

Hey senator, here's a great idea.

Reverse the itinerary and have many of the 5,000 who crammed into Faneuil Hall in Boston to cheer you on board a bus headed to New Hampshire.

Presto, chango, you've got instant energy and enthusiasm where it's needed most.

We won't even get into his decision to kick off his two-day announcement standing in front of a Navy aircraft carrier in South Carolina. That was the first time the Massachusetts senator had been in that state since May.

If the South Carolina primary were held today, Kerry could easily finish fourth or even fifth behind John Edwards, Dick Gephardt, Joe Lieberman and Bob Graham.

For months, Kerry has been looking for a way to demonstrate he would not be a Mike Dukakis nominee, who would do fine in the Northeast but get his clock cleaned south of the Mason-Dixon line.

Kerry did have one shining moment here last week when he showed some emotion and shed a tear at hearing laid-off worker Barbara Woodman's courageous determination to find as many part-time jobs as possible to keep her children in college.

Thanks to some malcontents on the national Kerry bandwagon, the campaign stepped on its own announcement tour as the Iowa stop on Tuesday was dominated by rumors of an internal shakeup.

The worst-kept secret inside Kerry Central is those running the Boston and Washington campaign operations are barely on speaking terms and each blame the other for dragging the candidate into the blue funk that has him trailing Dean big in both New Hampshire and Iowa.

Don't blame the New Hampshire campaign contingent of Ken Sullivan, Judy Reardon and Kym Spell, who have delivered some of the biggest names and argued for more face time and more multi-event campaign stops by the candidate.

The Kerry ad strategy did have some thought to it as the campaign used "real-time'' footage from the Iowa and New Hampshire announcements.

This is to counteract all the buzz over Dean's use of the Internet to raise money during the last quarter, since Kerry has vowed to be the "best science president'' in recent history.

Let's hope media guru Jim Margolis got some winks over the weekend because he stayed up nearly four days straight to direct, film, edit and deliver the spots in time.

No details please, but this media buy is bigger (read $$$$) than Dean's was in August. Kerry is buying time on multiple Boston stations and has not chosen only the cheapest time slots.

If anybody needed a paid media bounce, this guy does now.
Fuzzy math.


Takin' it to the Streets

posted by Chuckie at Sunday, September 07, 2003 permalink 0 comments View blog reactions
Gov. Dean's grassroots supporters were out in full force at the Adams Morgan festival in Northwest Washington, DC today. Aside from a few people walking around the crowd with Kucinich literature (but no table as far as I could tell), Dean was the only campaign with a presence at the festival, which ran the length of the diverse (and quite fun) Adams Morgan neighborhood. Volunteers report that despite bringing over 1000 stickers, the table ran out of them early in the day. Here's a picture of the volunteers talking to festivalgoers:

For more information about getting involved in the Washington metro area, visit DC For Dean, an outstanding grassroots site. There are plenty of activities coming up, from fundraisers to house parties to a rally at the University of Maryland tomorrow.

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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.