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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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Monday, January 19, 2004


Rumors from Des Moines & special guest blog

posted by annatopia at Monday, January 19, 2004 permalink View blog reactions
Well today is D-Day, and the rumors are flying. We've got the rumor that Kucinich cut a deal with John Edwards, and he's asked his supporters to caucus for Edwards if Kucinich doesn't get his 15%. I don't think that's going to fly with the Kucinich camp. Every single Kucinich supporter I've met had said that Dean is their second choice and that they will not vote for someone who authorised the war and co-wrote the (un)PATRIOT(ic) act.
Also, Kerry has been push-polling. LOVELY. What a class act, that Kerry guy. And seniors in Iowa are getting recorded calls telling them to caucus at 8pm. We don't know where those calls are originating, but it smells of RNC dirty tricks.
And just so you know, the young Rethuglicans have been out in full force trying to disrupt events held by Democratic candidates. You can smell the fear emanating from their side of the aisle. At Drake University on Saturday (the Dean event with Joan Jett & Janeane Garafalo), the young thugs stormed the event and carried in Bush-Cheney04 banners. They were yelling things like, "Where's your flag?" and crap like that. Joan Jett started singing the Star Spangled Banner and pretty soon the entire crowd joined in and ran the RNC thugs out of the room. Some Kerry and Kucinich supporters told me the same things have happened at their events.
But the bottom line is that the Democrats are going to be strong this year and the RNC knows it. You can smell the desperation. No matter who the Democrats nominate, we will win.

Des Moines is pretty crazy right now. The Storm Center is rockin' right now. The phone banks are buzzing, canvass teams are still arriving and departing, the media is everywhere. Oh, and the Gov did some phone-banking today. I didn't get any pictures because he is being guarded pretty heavily (there's finally a big, beefy bodyguard in his entourage), but he was on the phones for over an hour.

Dean supporter Ray Minchew of Washington for Dean phone banks undecided caucus-goers

Here's the random media picture for the day:

L-R, Colette (cdmarine from the Kos boards), Mort Kondrake, Anna

Mort was actually a pretty funny guy. I told him (with more than a twinge of sarcasm) that I'd watched him last night on FAUX and I thought his coverage was actually fair and balanced (it really was, for once). He laughed and asked how often I watched FAUX. I told him rarely, and he said, "Keeping an eye on the enemy?" I said "yes" and he laughed out loud. A few jokes about FAUX news ensued, and Mort was a good sport and laughed right along with us. Then he posed for pictures with all of us hanging out in the room which has become known as Blog Central.

Tom Brokaw has been here today, and he gets a thumbs down from Blog Central. When a volunteer named Marty asked, "Mr Brokaw, can I get a picture with you?", he refused, saying "I've gotta find Dean". As he stormed off, Marty said, "Clean it up, Tom." Other than that little moment, it's all been positive.

The field organisers are starting to stress a bit, which is to be expected. If they weren't a bit tense I'd be worried. But the overall vibe is so upbeat and positive today, and I've got a good feeling about tonight.

Speaking of good vibes, I've got a special guest standing over my shoulder waiting to guest blog, so I'll turn it over to DFA campaign manager Joe Trippi:

For over a year the netroots and grassroots have carried our campaign and made the difference every step of the way. It is a close race in Iowa -- and tonight it will be the same netroots and grassroots that make the difference. 3500 strong volunteers from across the nation are canvassing and gaining support for Howard Dean and getting people to the caucus.

We emerged from the pack because of each of your efforts -- and tonight Howard Dean will come "storm'n back" because of the grassroots Iowa Storm that is rolling through the state of Iowa right now. I went out and knocked on doors with the grassroots yesterday --- and the response was great -- we are gaining steam.

People are really getting that this election is about power.
Its about who owns our government and who runs it.

The corporate special interests defending the status quo
or the American people demanding change.

Democracy is not easy -- the other campaigns and the doubters and cynics are trying to stop our movement -- but we will not be stopped.

Thank you for everything you are doing for the campaign and our cause. This is really the place it all began.

Joe Trippi
campaign manager
Dean for America

cross-posted to annatopia, please go there for the images. i've removed them from here to conserve my bandwidth.


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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.