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

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Saturday, January 31, 2004



posted by Dana at Saturday, January 31, 2004 permalink View blog reactions
What makes Roy Neel so confident Howard Dean can come back?

First, there is us. We may not be able to win a primary by ourselves, but we can certainly keep Dr. Dean from meeting Howard's End. With $1.4 million on the bat, with thousands of activists in every February 3 state, we may not win any but we won't be shut out of delegates.

Second, there is the math facing General Clark, and Senator Edwards. They're from the South, they have to do well there. If the Massachusetts Senator smokes them in places like Oklahoma, Arizona and South Carolina, their funds are going to dry up faster than water on a hot griddle. At that point, he expects, the networks will point at Sharpton, Lieberman and Kucinich, then point to the door. (If Clark or Edwards pulls a surprise Tuesday, by the way, good for our side, because it slows Kerry's mometum.)

Third, of course, Neel is aiming for the small table. That's where the late debates are often held, around a small table. Even if there's no table, the rules are adjusted, so candidates can no longer rely on their stump speeches and have to think on their feet.

This is where Howard Dean will shine through. Consider how well he did on Hardball after the Thursday debate? Fifteen minutes of fast back-and-forth on Iraq, he talked as rapidly as the hosts, and he finished with his very best point -- the enemy of my enemy may not be my friend, he's my enemy. Devastating.

Kerry can't survive in that kind of hothouse. Dean will tear him apart. Neel is depending on that, and I think he's right.


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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.