Tuesday, February 03, 2004
It's a nail-biter in New Mexico http://www.cnn.com/ELECTION/2004/primaries/pages/states/NM/
UPDATE: Kerry pulled ahead by a respectable margin, and Clark eked out ahead of Dean to grab second. Still, Dean is above the delegate threshold. Remember that the pundits were calling Dean toast, yet he was still able to compete hard in New Mexico, despite no media presence.
Judy, Judy, Judy http://www.thenation.com/doc.mhtml?i=20040216&s=pollitt
Best line in the article (okay, that's saying something):
"The doctors Dean seem to be in need of some tips on togetherness and building a healthy political marriage," opined Maureen Dowd, a single woman who, even if she weds tomorrow, will be in a nursing home by the time she's been married for twenty-three years like the Deans.
Oh ok, one more:
What if the media tried on for size the notion that having an independent wife says something good about a candidate? For example, maybe, if his wife is not at his beck and call, he won't assume the sun rises because he wants to get up; maybe, if his wife has her own goals in life, her own path to tread, he won't think women were put on earth to further his ambitions; maybe, if he and his wife are true partners -- which is not the same as her pouring herself into his career and his being genuinely grateful, the best-case scenario of the traditional political marriage -- he may even see women as equals.
February 3, 2004 Vote Open Thread
the Prize http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/4147124/
The main goal here is to build momentum, which can crest on Feb 7th. And then onwards to Feb 10th.
If the campaign falters, though, it won't be because we didn't try. I remain disappointed that Dean probably won't be at the Ann Arbor meetup, that he hasn't publicly leveraged his endorsements from Gore and Jesse Jackson Jr. yet. I am disappointed that Dean didn't seem to recognize the symbolic importance of South Carolina, or that Roy Neel hasn't said anything about Tennessee or Virginia yet. All these things are failures of motivation from the campaign - not us. But campaigns are large and massive entities that even the candidate himself doesn't really control so much as be tolerated by, like a wormrider from Dune.
At the end of the day today, Dean will have energized us. We remain convinced that he is the best candidate for the nomination, and we are acting on that belief. Some of us are on the ground, others are blogging, all of us have thrown in money at our bat time and time again - have you noticed we are almost at $40,000?
I feel good. This is February 3rd and the election is nine months away. Nine months is enough for a political gestation of sorts. We, Dean Nation and the 700k strong supporters of Dean are the embryonic seed of a new political movement. Dean may be at the apex of this new form of political life, but ultimately it is we who are the flesh and blood.
Stop looking at polls, Dean Nation. Stop looking at primaries! Start looking at the election, and at the energy that we have marshaled to get to where we are today. And reflect on this: we have only just begun to fight!
I'm feeding the bat tonight. Join me and let's make news tomorrow - Dean may not win delegates, but he is winning hearts and minds. And my dollars.
UPDATE: Joe Lieberman will likely withdraw if he doesn't win Delaware tonight. If that doesn't cheer you up, what will? :)
UPDATE 2: Superdelegates stand firm - and Al Gore is out there below the radar, where it counts!
Al Gore campaigns for Democratic presidential hopeful Howard Dean Sunday at a church in Detroit. Michigan holds its Democratic primary on Saturday.
Trippi on MSNBC tonight
Also, consider this an open thread for this afternoon. I think all of us are pretty busy today, so posting may be light. The floor is yours.
A random hodge-podge of thoughts
If we take nothing else from today - including delegates - it's that the Democrats are motivated and eager to beat Bush. They are going to the polls in droves, and that should scare the beejebus out of Karl Rove. If our base is motivated (and no doubt we must give at least partial credit to the Dean movement for this trend), that's a good thing. If we can draw in new voters, that's a good thing. Both Iowa and New Hampshire had great turnouts, record numbers of new voters, and some serious ABB displays. This bodes well for our party come November.
I'd also like to take a moment to thank everyone on this blog who's taken it upon themselves to get out in the streets and support Howard Dean. In particular, I'd like to recognise JenInSC, who pioneered the letter writing effort in South Carolina. Major kudos to the grassroots in Missouri, Delaware, North Dakota, Arizona, Oklahoma, and New Mexico as well. They have had a much tougher job over the past few weeks and they deserve serious applause for sticking with the plan and doing their best to GOTV. If we get *anything* out of today, it will be thanks to the grassroots. I just wanted to make sure that they know how much we appreciate and admire their efforts.
Looking forward, the Michigan contest is
The great state of Maine is holding their caucus this weekend, and it looks like a Kerry-Dean tossup at the moment. Washington State also holds their contest this
By all accounts, we're looking pretty good in Wisconsin on Feb 17. although nothing is certain at this point and the situation is changing daily. Depending on how things shake down tonight (Edwards has pledged to drop out if he doesn't win South Carolina, and others may drop as well if they don't pull out key victories), Wisconsin could be the place where the anti-Kerry emerges.
Burlington has announced that employees will be getting paid again next week, which is a good thing. The money is still rolling in (over $3 million raised since Iowa), and the grassroots (while a bit shaken after the events of the past few weeks) are still growing. Over 630,000 Americans have joined Dean for America, and Meetup is close to 190,000.
Overall, compared to some of the other guys, we are doing just fine. But it's certainly crunch time, and I'm hoping the grassroots will be able to deliver some delegates today.
Monday, February 02, 2004
An Open Secret http://www.opensecrets.org/presidential/index.asp?sort=C
Well, it's an open secret.
Specifically, it's opensecrets.org, which collects financial reports from all the campaigns. Here's the key figure, cash on hand, as of
Howard Dean $9,647,361
Wesley Clark $3,404,975
Dennis Kucinich $2,629,441
John Kerry $1,605,428
Joe Lieberman $612,161
John Edwards $275,212
Al Sharpton $7,535
Now, victory will help Kerry re-charge. But how will Edwards, or Lieberman, if they fail to do well tomorrow? How will Sharpton?
Need some more confidence. Talk to the bat. Over $500,000 has come in since Saturday, just on the bat.
In other words, someone is going down tomorrow, and it is not going to be us. And where does Clark go from Oklahoma? Where is his infrastructure in Tennessee and Virginia?
No, it's not going to be easy. But we can do it. Let people know we're competing, with a few well-produced TV ads, let them know what the competition is, and people will come. Already, over 630,000 have come. More come all the time.
We can do this thing. We just have to execute. Let our competitors go down, one-by-one. Make the case against Kerry, and win.
1992 Results http://www.dailykos.com/story/2004/2/2/235151/6327
Another Ad http://www.cinemetrix.com/home/demo/dean
Pass it on!
the slow road http://www.tnr.com/blog/campaignjournal?pid=1274
According to Roy Neel's strategy memo, Dean is hoping for two paradoxical results tomorrow. On the one hand Neel wants Edwards and Clark cleared from the race. On the other hand he wants Kerry weakened. Of course, the way for Kerry to be weakened is for Clark and Edwards to beat Kerry in Oklahoma and South Carolina, thus keeping them viable. Neel is also silent on his plan for the February 10 Tennessee and Virginia contests, which together are worth 151 delegates.
Finally, Dean spent two years and $45 million trying a version of this strategy in Iowa and New Hampshire. It didn't work.
There's a reason Neel has been silent about Feb 10th - it's because they are ignoring the grassroots base. What's needed is a high-level call to arms by Dean himself to his supporters in the Feb 3rd and the Feb 10th states, to bracket his own personal efforts fpor Feb 7th.
The impression I get is that the campaign is trying to play it safe. Dean spoke openly about racial issues once - but now he is ceding South Carolina. And Jesse Jackson Jr has reportedly been seen with Kerry - not surprising given that Dean hasn't even tried to capitalize on that support or endorsement. Dean likewise spoke openly about the need to court the southern voter - and now it's Kerry who is on record as saying that the Southern voter has the same concerns as the northern one. Dean's message is being co-opted and with it, any distinction between him and the rest of the field.
The main advantage Dean has is us. We can only do so much on our own. But a campaign strategy that leaves gaping holes with barely any mention of how they can be filled - or even a public acknowledgement that the grassroots are being actively asked to plug them - is running with one hand tied behind its back.
Good News from Kerryland
ANSWER: You betcha.
On Saturday, January 31, Massachusetts for Dean held an all-day organizing meeting -- a morning session at UMass-Amherst and an afternoon session at Boston University. We planned the meeting in the midst of the Iowa and New Hampshire efforts. In other words, this meeting got planned in about a week and many folks in MA found out about it at the last minute and in the midst of the latest round of the anti-Dean media circus (which has been especially strong in Massachusetts, not surprisingly).
How many people showed up? Close to 50 in Western Mass, and well over 100 in Boston. It was standing room only to hear Steve Grossman (National Co-Chair of DFA) and the Governor's brother, Bill Dean (who lives in MA), and listen to presentations by MassforDean organizers about: what we'll be doing to help out in Michigan and Maine; registering MA voters by the February 11 deadline; MFD's media strategy; and GOTV in MA for March 2. The Q&A and breakout sessions were lively and went well beyond the time limits.
The energy at these meetings was INCREDIBLE. People are not discouraged; they are energized; they are determined. In some ways, it was like an enormous statewide meetup. There was a good mix of longtime Dean activists and quite a few newbies (we invited our whole mailing list and DFA sent out a notice to all their tens of thousands of supporters in MA).
We even got some media coverage. NECN (New England Cable News) dropped by the Boston session and interviewed Steve Grossman.
What we have built is amazing. What we have inspired is amazing. We are much more powerful than we sometimes think we are. And while we shouldn't kid ourselves -- this is going to be a tough tough climb -- we cannot forget: WE HAVE THE POWER. Onward!
Today's Inspiration http://artsci.wustl.edu/~gsbarkin/Dean
The link in the paragraph above is to a Windows Media Player file. The link in the headline leads to files in other formats.
This has been one of the chief grassroots complaints against the campaign, the quality of its commercials. Since I don't live in Iowa I didn't see any of the official ads, but I can tell you this one is pretty good. It combines an honest attack on John Kerry's record with an uplifting pitch for the Dean message. Its only fault is the length -- 1:30. But that can be fixed.
Dean must attend the Feb 4th Meetup in Ann Arbor http://dean2004.meetup.com/537
Thanks to many of you, our crowds over the past week have been phenomenal -- thousands in Michigan, South Carolina, Missouri, New Mexico, Arizona, Washington, Milwaukee, and Detroit. Tomorrow Gov. Dean will be in New Mexico and Arizona, back to Washington, Wisconsin, and Michigan. He is the quintessential Energizer bunny of presidential campaigning -- I'm amazed by his energy and durability!
I'm pleased to see that the campaign is making stops in Feb 7th states while the rest of the field focuses on the Feb 3rd lineup - but remember that Clark had weeks to himself in New Hampshire, yet still finished 4th (sans delegates).
A rally, even with thousands in attendance, is just a stump speech. A Meetup however is something far more tangible. Meetups, unlike rallies, are where we really convert hearts and minds to this cause, as opposed to rewarding those who have already signed on.
And Michigan is the prize - here are teh number of delegates at stake by state (via Ryan Lizza):
February 3 (269)
South Carolina (45)
North Dakota (14)
New Mexico (26)
February 7 (204)
Focus, oh Wolverines! You must get Dean to the Ann Arbor Meetup on Feb 4th. If Dean does not show, I predict he will lose the state. It's up to us to make the case.
The 15% Solution
That's what the Dean grassroots have to do tomorrow. Because a lot of media pundits will want to stick a fork in us after the results come in.
But we're fighting, in every state. Jason Gervich sent a letter he got printed in the Arizona Republic on Dean's electability. The o-blog is filled with heart-warming stories of Dean visibility in New Mexico, in North Dakota, in Delaware -- in all the February 3 states.
And the Good Doctor himself has been racing across the country like a man possessed, rallying the troops. Even Roy Neel has found a more down-home voice on the o-blog.
Just so we're crystal clear on what we need tomorrow.
We can get delegates in any Congressional District where Dean scores 15% of the vote. Even if we get, say, 8% in one state, we still score delegates if it's 15% in a CD.
And not all these races are primaries, either. North Dakota is a caucus. Governor Dean drew over 500 to a North Dakota rally just a few months ago. We can do well there if we just show up.
Also, ignore the spin. This is last-gasp time for Lieberman, Sharpton, Edwards, and Clark -- not us. If Lieberman gets shut-out, if Sharpton or Edwards can't win South Carolina, and if Clark can't win Oklahoma, they're gone. That's OK -- it brings the one-on-one contest with Kerry closer. And if any of these candidates scores a breakthrough tomorrow that's also good, because it slows Kerry's momentum.
We don't have to win. So if we do win anywhere it's huge. And we have a great organization, especially in the Hispanic communities, in New Mexico and Arizona. We've got a ton of fans in North Dakota. We've been organizing Delaware. (I hope I'm not leaving anyone out.) Just remember, tomorrow is about delegates, not ultimate victory.
Let's get some delegates. Remember the 15% solution. Better days are coming.
Sunday, February 01, 2004
SPECIAL interest Kerry
We’ve had fair charges (Dukakis-Kerry) and unproven charges (Botox-Kerry). We’ve had irrelevant charges (Ketchup-Kerry) and relevant ones (Waffler-Kerry).
But the only judge who counts, Howard Dean, has spoken, on Meet The Press this morning. The winning entry is (drum roll)… Special Interest Kerry.
Pictured (so as not to annoy the good people of Kellogg, in Battle Creek, Michigan, site of a primary this Saturday) is a failed extension of the “Special K” line. (The original product is delicious. I have some in my pantry right now.) Kerry, like the product pictured, will, if chosen, fail in the market.
To be effective a charge must not only be true, it must play into existing doubts about a candidate. This charge does, because it shows that Kerry, like Bush, says one thing and does the opposite. He’s as phony as a “compassionate conservative.”
Here is the story on which the charge is based, which in turn is based on a simple analysis of campaign finance records.
While Senator John Kerry regularly promises to stand up to "big corporations," his campaign has taken money from executives on Wall Street and those representing the telecommunications industry, which is under his purview in Congress. Mr. Kerry denounces President Bush for catering to the rich, but he has depended more heavily on affluent donors than the other leading Democrats except for another populist, Senator John Edwards.
But wait, there’s more:
Mr. Kerry has criticized the current "creed of greed" and faulted Mr. Bush letting "the privileged ride high and reap the rewards." But his typical donors share at least one similarity with the president's, an ability to give $2,000, the legal maximum.
Fifty-five percent of Mr. Kerry's money has come from donors giving $2,000. For Mr. Bush, the comparable figure is 73 percent, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.
The center's analysis shows that small donors, those giving $200 or less, have provided 12 percent of Mr. Kerry's campaign money, the same percentage they provided for Mr. Bush.
So, can John Kerry make the most important case of this campaign, namely that George W. Bush is beholden to special interests and a Democratic President won’t be?
The answer is he cannot. He will be taken apart by the Bush machine, plucked like a chicken. He is the easiest candidate for George W. Bush to beat, not the hardest.
The hardest is the man who has gotten his money from people like you, and thus is only beholden to people like you.
If Democrats are serious about winning, and serious about making a difference, the candidate they must choose, starting in Wisconsin, is Governor Howard Dean. It’s now up to us to make this case in every way, and every place, we possibly can.
Saturday, January 31, 2004
Trippi Still Working After NH Concession Speech
What a warrior.
It's a Ground War http://dean.postersforamerica.com
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.
Friday, January 30, 2004
Roy's Mis-speak http://blog.deanforamerica.com/archives/003471.html
We don't have to win Tuesday. We don't even have to win the following Saturday.
If we just hang around, picking up delegates where we can, and saving all that money coming in off the bat, we can get Kerry all alone, starting around Wisconsin, and most delegates will still be unchosen.
In other words, we're to become the "anti-Kerry."
Fine. Good. Wonderful. But does he have to put it this way:
we have elected to not buy television advertisements in February 3 states, but instead direct our resources toward the February 7 and 8 contests in Michigan, Washington and Maine. We may not win any February 3 state, but even third place finishes will allow us to move forward, continue to amass delegates in Virginia and Tennessee on February 10, and then strongly challenge Kerry in Wisconsin.
When he could just as easily have put it this way:
We have decided to fully empower our grassroots supporters through February 17. We believe you will keep us competitive while other candidates falter.
This has always been your campaign and, for the next true weeks, that will literally be the case. We believe you can shock the world, that with your hard work we can turn this race around, and that we can dominate the delegate selection process from Wisconsin onward.
You have the tools, you have the enthusiasm, you have the will to take this party back and take this country back.
Let's go get 'em!
The first is the language of a Washington insider, writing for the punditocracy. The second is the language of a general directing his troops toward the next big battle and forward toward ultimate victory. The first could have gone off in an e-mail to the Washington press corps. We need something more.
With all the pundits now writing us off, what we need from our general most right now is a pep talk. It doesn't have to sound like Joe Trippi. We know Joe Trippi. We love Joe Trippi. Roy Neel is no Joe Trippi.
Sigh. I guess I just miss ol' Joe.
The Misunderstanding of Judy Dean http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/4066284/
I'm tired of demanding "the right look" for president. I want a President and First Lady with substance and self-awareness. I thought this article just reflected so well on Judy - and it says something positive about Howard's character that he picked such a woman to be his partner.
"In what is supposedly an enlightened age for women, we in the media should be celebrating Dean's independence, not questioning it. Shouldn't it be refreshing to meet a woman who'd prefer to be a doctor than gazing longingly from the edge of the stage as her husband delivers the seventh identical stump speech of the day? (And how come all of my supposedly gifted media colleagues missed the irony of an independent, modern woman, who nonetheless has one foot in that bygone age of doctors who make house calls? That alone should have won her points.)"
In The Interview, Mrs. Dean again showed us her humility, her professionalism, her dedication, her...what's that word?...her integrity (I almost forgot the word because it's such a rare sight on television). Every time Dean opened her mouth, I found myself hoping that my daughter grows up to be Judith Steinberg Dean.
Yet the more she spoke, the more "sins" she rang up.
"I don't watch TV that much," she said. Diane was visibly upset.
"I am kind of private...and I have a medical practice which I love," she said later. "And I think it's really important for me, and Howard knows it's important to me. But, I also love Howard, and I think he would make a terrific president...And, I think if I can help him, I will. And that doesn't mean he's going to disrupt my life, disrupt my patients, my son, but if he calls on a Saturday, and I'm not on call that weekend, I'll be out there Sunday." Imagine that, a husband and wife who support each other's careers. Diane was skeptical."
The interview goes on like this. At any rate, thought I'd share it with all of you... and three cheers for Judy!
The Biggest Bush Fraud Of All
The Bush Administration claims everything is lovely. They base this on two quarters’ GDP growth, which itself is based heavily on rising stock prices.
Prices are up from a year ago, as much as 20%. But the fact that is being hidden is that the value of the dollar is also down, by an equal (sometimes greater) amount.
This does not just mean a European vacation is out of the question. It also means that foreign investments in our economy are, despite the rising stock market, actually falling in value. Japanese, Chinese, Arab, and European investors are all losing money on their dollar investments.
Now consider that both our trade and budget deficits are largely funded by foreigners. China’s purchases of dollars are the biggest “seller financing” deal of all time. (We get stuff, they get dollars, they don’t change those dollars into Chinese currency.) It won’t continue if the value of those dollars keeps declining.
Consider too that for generations the dollar has been a “reserve currency.” Oil is priced in dollars, and our government pays for the national debt in dollars. This is an advantage enjoyed by no one else. Every economic collapse in the developing world, whether in Asia, Africa or Argentina, is tied to their currency’s fall in value against the dollar. Their loans were in dollars, their currency fell against the dollar, so no matter how much they paid back, they owed more and more. No other nation, other than ours, can actually finance its debts by just printing more money.
That is about to change. Oil exporters won’t take dollars forever if those dollars turn to water in their hands. Bankers won’t lend us dollars forever if those dollars turn to water, either.
At some point, maybe this year, Russia or Saudi Arabia could start demanding oil payments in something more stable, say, Euros. As the Euro becomes a “reserve currency” our economic power wanes permanently. So does our economic independence. Our best companies, even our land, can all be had on the cheap.
A falling dollar fuels higher interest rates, higher prices, and falling real incomes, even if things seem OK in the short term. George W. Bush did this deliberately. A falling dollar makes our exports cheaper, and imports more expensive. It’s short-term gain for long-term pain. He hopes to keep the scam going through, say, November.
There is only one Democrat who has called Bush and Fed Chairman Alan Greenspan on this fraud. That Democrat is Howard Dean.
The question for America today is this? Are you going to let Bush get away with this fraud as well?
No? So what are you doing TODAY to make sure he doesn’t?
Diane Sawyer Gets Religion http://abclocal.go.com/kgo/news/012904_nw_dean_scream_abcnews.html
In short, Diane gets many network bigwigs to admit that they blew it way out of proportion and didn't put the speech in context -- i.e. Dean had to shout to be heard over the roar of 3000+ supporters. A fact that many of us who were there, including many reporters, knew all along.
A rare case indeed to have the mainstream media admit they made a big blunder. Perhaps we should write this date on our calendars...
Read the story here; watch the segment here.
February 3 Is Up To Us
The Dean campaign is going to put its ad money into the February 7 states with the most delegates. February 3 belongs to the grassroots.
I know we "failed" in Iowa, and in New Hampshire. But I have a theory on that.
We were too thick on the ground. We tried too hard. We put too many chips on "red" and, when we didn't win outright, we looked like losers.
Not just Dean. But Dean Nation.
Well this weekend is our chance for redemption. If you live in Missouri, Arizona, New Mexico, South Carolina, Oklahoma, Delaware, or North Dakota, we are all depending on you this weekend.
The Web site has the tools. Voting has begun in most of those states. You can be bringing people to the polls NOW. You can be distributing literature, you can be launching phone trees, you can be e-mailing links to things like Common Sense
You can even, if you choose, add your own negative talking points. It's not being done by Dean for America. It's up to you.
If the grassroots can turn out a better-than-expected showing, if they can win only one or two of these states with no help from Burlington, then the story of February 3 will be about our power, and how Kerry failed.
Get to work, people. You have four days to turn America around.
Kerry not unstoppable, analysts say
The Dead Center
Gwen Ifill speaks with former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean
Howard Dean is visiting Michigan
Democrats vow to roll back Bush tax cuts
1). This race is not over.
2). Even if Dean loses the nod, our movement is not over.
3). If indeed Dean loses the nod, we, WE, must keep this movement alive.
4). If Kerry gets the nod, his first test of leadership is to bring us in. I predict he might fail -- but if that happens (and I think we still could win -- and will, I pray) I hope he is successful. However, I doubt his leadership. Despite his Vietnam record, this man is a whiny coward (in my view) and that concerns me -- greatly. Much.
5). If, somehow, we do not get the nod (and we may not) I beg of thee -- we must, at all costs, keep this movement alive. We ARE the...
Fiscally Responsible Progressive Wing of the Democratic Party
And yes, Kerry-Heinz, I'll consider leaving ya'll behind -- yes, an unswaying stalwart Dem like me....will do nothing more than vote for you -- you want us Dean folks to lift a finger for you? Overture, overture, again......make it good.
Overture, and sing, sing, sing. A promise or two would help.
Finally, speaking of "electability" -- Dems are having some suicidal thoughts, I guess. Dean, the Leftish Reagan Wild Card, is the ONLY one who could win (except maybe Edwards).
We must fight ever and harder and more relentlessly than ever.
Do you wanna volunteer for Kerry?
Exactly. The time is now, do what you can -- this could, be, perhaps, the only moment in our lives to Take Back America!
What can, what will, you do?
As I've stated in other posts on different topics:
NOW, FOLKS: IT-IS-TIME
We can win this, if you, YOU! -- will do all YOU can do.
Thursday, January 29, 2004
Trippi Interview http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/3910275/
UPDATE (Matt): Trippi will also be on Hardball tomorrow night. It should be noted in the Governor's post on the O-Blog that he hoped Trippi will later decide to return to the campaign as a strategic advisor.
UPDATE (Matt): Elegant, classy, honest, all around wonderful. Trippi says, "I love the grassroots," he still called the movement "we," he was clearly emotional about leaving but not at all bitter. He still says he firmly believes Dean will win and that this campaign is the nation's "last chance" to get things right. I remember the nights in the early campaign when I would get personal e-mails from Joe. I was amazed how someone in his position would actually respond to my individual thoughts. He impressed me so much then; he continues to impress me now.
Open Thread: SC Debate
Here's hoping for a turnaround...
Grassroots Reacts to Changes @ DFA http://www.here-now.org/shows/2004/01/20040129_2.asp
Here's the link. (Click on the LISTEN button -- segment begins about 4:30 minutes in).
Way to get media in Kerryland, guys -- and excellent job!
media visibility crusade - on the cheap
- get on local talk radio. His Hannity appearance was excellent, and I heard he appeared on Hannity's TV show with Colmes last night to follow up. Deliberately target conservative media - that makes Dean look unafraid to challenge the right wing and also gets him broader access. Plus what other candidate is sticking it to the wingnuts? Certainly not Mr. Front Runner.
- Target national daytime television. Someone suggested Oprah (with both Howard and Judy!), other good avenues are Rosie O'Donnell and the Wayne Brady show. Lots of undecided voters are captive audiences at home during the day, and an informal apearance can give him a chance to make an appeal based on his record of accomplishment. It's those ordinary people watching TV at home that disproportionately are feeling the pain of the Bush economy and are wondering what these Democrats are doing for them.
- Stump in South Carolina with Jesse Jackson Jr and with Al Gore. Spend a whole day there talking to local church communities. Attend a service in Sunday and give out a yell for God.
- Target Hispanic media like Unavision - there must be daytime talk shows on the Hispanic networks where Dean can appear. Is Dean fluent in Spanish? If so, hold the entire interview in that language. If not, ask someone from Latinos for Dean to appear with him on the show.
- Get on late-night television. Dean should do at two of the following shows: Saturday Night Live, Late Show with Conan O'Brien, Letterman, Leno. Avoid cable talk shows since it's a more limited market (though do take up Chris Matthews on his open invitation to Dean for HardBall)
- Run grassroots-created ads on basic cable channels - USA Network and TNT for example are cheaper to buy ads on than primetime television, and they reach as many viewers. Launch a new bat dedicated to funding this effort. Use the best ideas from Project Deanlight and Switch2Dean in their entirety without any edits or changes - just dump them on those markets.
This should keep his visibility high in the Feb 3 round and sustain momentum into Feb 7th. After Feb 3rd, though, he needs to spend all his time in the Feb 7th states to be on the ground making his case in all the local media (including making a direct pitch to the various newspaper editorial boards asking for their endorsement).
On Feb 4th, Dean needs to attend a meetup in Ann Arbor. Make it the biggest meetup ever - let's shatter the old New York record. Hey Michigan for dean, are you listening? Bombard Burlington with invites now, you guys! Send two people to drive to campaign HQ and camp out waiting for Dean to invite him in person!
After Feb 7th, he needs to maintain his visibility:
- Appear on The West Wing on NBC by having Martin Sheen throw his weight around.
- Blog interviews. Dean needs to conduct a telephone interview with Daily Kos, Liberal Oasis, Atrios, and Blogging of the President. Dean also needs to take the time to personally answer the Dean Nation Interview Questions.
- Work together with MoveOn.org to utilize the best ideas of some of the ad winners from their recent Bush in 30 Seconds contest. Gore can help make a case for this and Rob Reiner can edit the films, along with recruiting the actual producers of the home-grown submitted films themselves. Put Heath Eiden and Karl Frisch in charge!
- More late-night television - finish off the ones he didn't get to before Feb 3rd.
what else? Remember he has to be on the ground between Feb 3rd and 7th in Michigan and Wisconsin. IMHO it's a waste of his time to go stumping on foot before Feb 3rd, anywhere, because voter memory is short and voter fatigue will be high. If he maintains the media visibility campaign as suggested above then he can swoop in to the Feb 7th states and capitalize on the momentum. And that leaves the time before Feb 3rd to do the other things suggested above that are more unorthodox.
And note how the laundry list above relies heavily on contacts and endorsers and netroots supporters. That is by design. More suggestions along those lines are needed.
UPDATE: added some more bullet items. Keep the ideas flowing in comments!
get Jesse Jackson and Al Gore to South Carolina with Dean
UPDATE: and of course, get Bill Bradley out there in Michigan! Where are the endorsers?!
A reporter called me to ask about Trippi. It’s part of the “picking of the bones” process.
While we were talking an analogy occurred to me, from the first Civil War. (I credit Vietnam as the second.) It came in historian Shelby Foote’s praise of George McClellan, the Union General fired in 1862. “He really built that Army,” Foote said, and much of what that Army did afterward was a tribute to McClellan.
No analogy is perfect. Trippi combined much of McClellan’s organizational brilliance with the imperfections of generals who succeeded him, like Ambrose Burnside and Joe Hooker. Trippi fought, hard, but the costs exceeded results in Iowa and New Hampshire.
Dean lacks the luxury of the years Lincoln spent in finding Grant. He also needs someone with Lee’s tactical brilliance – Grant really won by grinding the opponent down through superior forces.
And what of Roy Neel? I know him best from my work on the technology beat, where he ran the US Telephone Association during the boom. Yes, he’s an insider, but we need one now. He’ll be the first to tell you he ain’t Robert E. Lee.
But this is not a time for fighting. This is a time to make a case. And the case is there to be made. John Kerry was Michael Dukakis’ Lieutenant Governor, he is Teddy Kennedy’s junior Senator, he has never run anything bigger than a Senate office, he’s a defensive politician at a time that calls for offense. He is yesterday’s man. The last really courageous thing he did was throw away his medals at a VVAW rally. The definition of insanity is to repeatedly do the same thing and expect a different result. Kerry is the same thing.
Right now Democrats need to play offense, not defense. They need an executive, not a legislator. They need someone new, not someone old, borrowed or blue. When it comes to true electability and the personal qualities the nation needs there is just no comparison. Dean was making this case last week in New Hampshire. Neel can press it.
Most of us, meanwhile, are clear on who and what we’re working for. We’re working on making Howard Dean our President, for to take this country back from the idiots now in charge of it. It’s the Union, not the General, who matters to us foot soldiers.
Your orders, General Neel?
Where we stand http://www.notgeniuses.com/archives/001618.html
NYT on Trippi departure http://www.nytimes.com/2004/01/29/politics/campaign/29DEAN.html?ex=1390712400&en=1661d9184fa00c75&ei=5007&partner=USERLAND
UPDATE: well, I guess I should state my opinion on the matter. I agree with the assessment that Trippi is a brilliant tactician - but a terrible strategist. (definitions here and here). Trppi recognized the potential of the netroots, and his contribution was to let it breathe freely and grow on its own. But he never really tapped into it for ideas. The O-blog contributes nothing to strategy, unlike here at Dean Nation where all we talk about is strategy. But the only idea that they ever ran with was embracing Meetup after we promoted it. And even that embrace ultimately fizzled down to just crowing about the number registered; ask yourself - why wasn't Dean at the Iowa or NH meetup before the primaries?
If the campaign was an internet startup, then Trippi was the brilliant CEO who founded the company. But the campaign has grown far beyond that stage, and we need someone with experience on the grown-up, experienced side of the fence. I'm very pleased at the choice of Neel and I think the timing was overdue.
Dean's Money Advantage Dwindles http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A58369-2004Jan28.html?nav=hptop_ts
Rivals including front-runner John F. Kerry are buying TV ads in South Carolina and other states holding primaries or caucuses Tuesday, but the former Vermont governor has chosen to forgo further advertising in this round, focusing instead on the Feb. 7 caucuses in Michigan and Washington state, campaign officials said. The decision marks a notable shift in fortunes for an innovative candidate who revolutionized fundraising via the Internet and led all Democrats in 2003 by collecting nearly $41 million.
"Clearly his decision to spend heavily in New Hampshire was at the expense of not spending in Arizona, New Mexico and South Carolina," said Evan Tracey of TNSMI/Campaign Media Analysis Group, which tracks media expenditures. "You are essentially leaving the paid media field to your opponents."
Dean, according to campaign aides, has calculated that he can remain credible by picking up enough votes to win some delegates in the Feb. 3 states, even without renewed advertising or a first-place finish.
Dean expects to run strongly in Michigan and Washington, a Dean aide said. What's more, in contrast to primary contests that require heavy spending on TV ads, caucuses involve more ground-level work, such as identifying supporters and getting them to caucus sites. Much of this work can be performed by volunteers, enabling a candidate to preserve cash.
Dean must win some contests in the next two weeks "or he'll have trouble raising money in the future," said Steve Weissman, associate director of the Campaign Finance Institute, a nonpartisan group based in Washington.
Kerry, the winner in Iowa and New Hampshire, has bought TV time in all seven Feb. 3 states. He also is enjoying the wave of free news coverage that accompanies front-runner status.
"I don't think everybody has the capacity to fight in every state," said Dean campaign chair Steve Grossman. "We are going to use our resources wisely." Dean, he said, "must win a state somewhere" by Feb. 7.
media navel-gazing http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A58426-2004Jan28_2.html
These attacks made Dean stronger. I don't hold a grudge in that sense - and I want Kerry to undergo the same trial by fire so he too becomes stronger. I only object to the media's sudden interest in meta-analysis. Drop the pretense, guys, and go for your narratives of the hour. We'll cope... and win.
voters are rational actors
Worse, it might damage it. The last thing we need is to re-entrench the perception of Dean as attracting idoelogical crazies and cultists who sneer down their noses at the average Joe. I'm strictly a "People are rational actors" guy.
Lets focus on telling the campaign what they should do right to draw people, not telling people what they are doing wrong to get them to switch. There are a lot of other oters out there who are uncommitted who are more fertile ground for Dean's ideas than the soft support that switched to Kerry.
Forget Kerry. Forget Trippi. Focus on Dean, and how to get this campaign back on message so it's the same one that all of reading this blog were drawn to last year.
Wednesday, January 28, 2004
TMS Continues Ad Effort http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/4089404/
I'm not sure this is a good idea. Thoughts?
ABC News: Dean Machine Shake-Up http://www.abcnews.go.com/sections/Politics/WorldNewsTonight/Dean_Campaign_Changes_040128-1.html
In an emotional meeting with members of the Burlington, Vt.-based staff this afternoon, Trippi thanked them for their hard work and vowed to continue to fight for Dean's candidacy.
Dean was in the room and acknowledged Trippi but the two did not shake hands, according to a staff member who was present.
Trippi ruled the campaign's organization with an iron fist, hiring political and field staffers — many of them quite young — who were loyal to him. In the process, he clashed with members of the Vermont guard loyal to Dean, like Kate O'Connor, Dean's longtime aide, and Bob Rogan, the campaign's deputy chief of staff.
Dean was said by several sources who are close to him to have been very upset by what happened in Iowa, and blamed Trippi's staff, in part, for being disorganized and for running poor-quality television advertisements.
Dean and Trippi also had disagreements over spending. Dean is very tight with his budgets and would often veto ideas Trippi proposed.
The relationship between Dean and Trippi has been somewhat strained in the intervening week, according to sources loyal to both Trippi and Dean.
Dean limited Trippi's role in New Hampshire, told him to return to Burlington, stay off television, and the candidate essentially transferred the campaign's executive authority to his New Hampshire state director, Karen Hicks.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 28, 2004
Statements by Governor Howard Dean and Joe Trippi
BURLINGTON--Dean for America released the following statements tonight:
Democratic presidential candidate Governor Howard Dean, M.D., issued the following statement:
"I am deeply grateful to Joe Trippi, who has decided to leave the campaign. Joe has made enormous contributions not just to our campaign but to American politics -- revolutionizing the way in which people are brought into the democratic process and helping hundreds of thousands of people to believe in political change again.
"I am pleased to announce that Roy Neel will be relocating to Burlington to assume the position of Chief Executive Officer of the campaign effective immediately. Roy brings enormous experience both in management and national politics. He will be an invaluable resource to our campaign.
"Last night the people of New Hampshire reaffirmed that their strong support for change and for a campaign based on standing up for what is right and delivering results not rhetoric.
"This campaign is a marathon not a sprint. I am committed to carrying our campaign through the coming weeks to primaries and caucuses all across the country. We will continue to offer the Democratic Party a candidacy based on courage and conviction and a campaign based on hope, not fear.
"This campaign is about all of us. I am grateful for what we have done together so far but our work is far from done. Now we must redouble our efforts, not simply to win the nomination but to change America."
* * *
Dean for America Campaign Manager Joe Trippi released the following statement:
"The Governor has asked Roy Neel to come in as CEO of the campaign, and I have resigned as campaign manager.
"I've always believed that the most important thing was to change our country and our politics.
"I'm proud of all of you and the work we have done together. I may be out of the campaign but I’m not out of the fight.
"Don't give up -- stay with Howard Dean's cause to change America.
-- 30 --
MSNBC is reporting that campaign manager Joe Trippi has been reassigned. Gore's Roy Neel to take over campaign.
Developing story... Click link above for initial story. Thanks to Mike on the zonk board for the link.
UPDATE (Aziz): another link just posted with a lot more information. Here's info on Neel:
Neel, Gore's former senatorial chief of staff, served as chief executive of the U.S. Telecom Association in Washington before working on Gore's 2000 presidential campaign. Neel was named to head Gore's transition team in anticipation of the former vice president winning the White House.
sources say that Dean asked Trippi to stay on the payroll, but Trippi decided to leave. "I may be out of the campaign, but I'm not out of the fight," Trippi was quoted as saying.
UPDATE (MATT B): Here is the O-Blog posting on Neel from 1/7/2004.
audio: Dean on Sean Hannity show (1/28/04) http://abcrad.wmod.llnwd.net/a49/external/0102cABAAHQAAAAcDle6yKhvE1c0LnEJnNwFajD8QD92LOnSD/hannity/dean012704.wma
The man was made for talk radio. He needs to get out there NOW. We need him on the Chris Baker show here in Houston. weneed him on YOUR local talk radio, also - chime in and list your local conservative radio hosts wo fantasize that the are the next Hannity or Limbaugh. Let's get Dean on the shows!
Should Dean compete for Feb 3? http://abcnews.go.com/wire/Politics/ap20040128_1138.html
Most of the questions asked in the official exit poll for the New Hampshire primary today are routine: Are you liberal or conservative, black or white, male or female, and, by the way, how did you vote?
But then out of nowhere comes this sucker punch: "Regardless of how you voted today, do you think Howard Dean has the temperament to serve effectively as president?" No other questions about specific candidates were asked.
Reading from an official statement, a harried spokesperson for the National Election Pool, a consortium of ABC, NBC, CBS, CNN, Fox and the AP that administered the poll, told Campaign Desk: "Dean's temperament has been much discussed throughout the campaign. He fell from a significant lead in New Hampshire. Did questions about his temperament after the Iowa speech contribute to that? The exit poll would be remiss if it didn't try to find out."
The spokeswoman stressed that because this was an exit poll, it wouldn't affect New Hampshire's results. She's wrong; the very existence of the question, first reported this afternoon by Howard Kurtz at WashingtonPost.com, could well sway late voters.
More important, what about South Carolinians, Missourians, Arizonans, and all the rest who have yet to vote? Even if few startled New Hampshire voters answer "no" to that loaded question, it seems certain to make news -- and to supply ammunition to Dean opponents.
Trippi in trouble? http://www.sevendaysvt.com/insidetrack/
Seven Days has learned that the disaster in Hawkeye Country last week caused a major realignment of Dean for America’s campaign hierarchy. Sources tell Seven Days that Campaign Manager Joe Trippi, the colorful Internet whiz who led the longshot Vermonter’s meteoric rise, has had his own wings plucked.
Dr. Dean, sources say, has taken control of the campaign checkbook from the Trippster and handed it to Deputy Campaign Manager Bob Rogan.
Rogan once served on Dean’s gubernatorial staff, before leaving for a management job at Vermont’s largest electric utility. He came back last year for the presidential bid. Now he and longtime Dean aide Kate O’Connor are steering the Dean campaign warship. There are clear indications that if Dean limps on after New Hampshire, Joltin’ Joe Trippi will be gone.
So, too, will Trippi’s Washington, D.C., consulting firm Trippi, McMahon & Squier. Steve McMahon has been producing Howard Dean for Governor TV commercials for a decade. The spots he did for Ho-Ho in Iowa are cited by grumbling Dean supporters as a factor in Dean’s poor showing there.
Frankly, the few ads I have seen were terrible. And I have been long incomfortable with the seeming conflict of interest in having TMS do the ads when the T was also the campaign manager. How could an objective decision get made in that scenario about the quality of the ads? This is all the more critical since we have entered the media-centric phase of the campaign.
But should Joe take the blame for the Iowa and NH losses? I don't know. Joe deserves credit for the Internet aspect of things but we all know that the campaign needs to grow beyond that - while keeping its character intact. In Iowa, the campaign did grow out into the real world, but it became something unrecognizable in the process.
Another issue that needs to be addressed is the burn rate. Yes, Dean has raised more money than anyone else - but how has it been spent? On orange hats? Trippi's strategy was always to concentrate on Iowa and NH for the win and coast to victory. And I did get the feeling that fundraising was indeed being taken almost for granted (and this is the real reason why the mailing list memberships have hit a plateau.)
Campaign staff shakeups are common to all the other campaigns - most notably front-runner Kerry. I don't know enough to have an opinion on whether Joe deserves the axe for Iowa and NH. If anything, I'm biased against it out of sheer personality admiration. But winning is more important. What do you think?
forget Kerry - it's domestic policy, stupid
In Manchester, Kerry gave a touching speech about the importance of veterans and of "keeping faith with those who wore the uniform." As soon as it was over, a woman stood up and said, I'm not a veteran. What are you going to do for the average person? At a firehouse in Hampton yesterday, a man told Kerry that he thinks it's unfair that people say a New Englander can't connect with people from varying backgrounds. And to prove that you can do it, he says, explain the importance of the icon on my hat. Kerry is mystified. "The Latin? The Ten?" he asks. Malcolm X, the man explains.
But the simple fact is that the race between Dean and Kerry is about Dean. We need to draw people to Dean first. Most of Kerry's support is relatively new, and part of the reason Dean lost support in Iowa was because he went negative. Let Clark (and Lehane) focus their fire on Kerry - but and emphasise that Dean not only knows what the X means, but he's got Jesse Jackson Jr. to vouch for it.
All those endorsements are garbage unless they are leveraged. We need simple commercials - Jesse Jackson Jr. Talking frankly about Dean and race, Gore talking frankly about Dean and Iraq - and Dean himself talking about what he has to offer, his success with Dr. Dynasaur and Success by Six. It's the domestic polcy, stupid.
Forget about Bush Lied and 16 words. Focus instead on the plight of our veterans who have to buy their own plane tickets home on leave and how their benefits are being drastically cut.
Forget about the federal deficit and talk about the raised property taxes which negate the "middle class tax cut" (say it with the sneer quotes). Mention payroll tax cuts.
Dean often talks about how Americans feel left out of the political process. He needs to start showing those people how their concerns are being addressed. It's not about Iraq or deficits or any other long-range national issues. It's about the here and now. It's about consistent job loss. It;s about corporate tax breaks as a reward for moving workers overseas. It's not about the big picture, it's about the facts on the ground.
And the voters will make the distinction between Dean and Kerry on their own, inexorably, inevitably.
Is the campaign listening anymore? I don't know. Joe Trippi hasn't left a comment on Dean Nation in many long months. The official blog remains an echo chamber of motivational speeches and dry logistical coordinating info. I don't know if they even remember we are here. But we are here, and we need to make noise, and fight to get our campaign back on track.
tv ads open thread
Winning On Electability
New Hampshire Democrats bought the idea that the Democratic Wing of the Democratic Party is, by definition, its more liberal wing, thus its least-electable wing.
Kerry beat us among moderates, and he pounded us on electability.
Over the next week we're going to get a lot of help in taking him down. The media is going to provide much of it. Kerry was Michael Dukakis' Lieutenant Governor. His voting record is more liberal than Teddy Kennedy's. He has never held executive office. Etc. etc. etc.
Wesley Clark and John Edwards are going to help us in this. They are going to direct all their fire on Kerry. This is a good thing.
Governor Dean's ads, meanwhile, are going to start sounding more like the speeches he gave last week in New Hampshire. Overtly or not, they will make the points I made here last night. We are going to run to Kerry's right, on Dean's record, and take back the moderates.
It then becomes crucial that the anti-Kerry vote not go to Clark or Edwards, and that we take the "electability" issue back as well.
That will be even easier.
Start with extravagant praise. John Edwards is a great lawyer, what we wouldn't give to see him as Attorney General instead of John Ashcroft. Wesley Clark is a great military thinker, what we wouldn't give to see him as Defense Secretary instead of Donald Rumsfeld. And Joe Lieberman, wouldn't he make a great Chief Justice when William Rehnquist retires?
But none of these men, as worthy as they are, has any more chance of being elected President in November than Al Sharpton or Dennis Kucinich.
At some point this spring, they will all run through the $45 million they are allowed to spend under the campaign laws. At that point, they will go under virtual house arrest. They will not be able to buy ads, they will not be able to travel, they won't even be able to pay their Internet bills.
That is the law. Bill Clinton used it to hammer Bob Dole in 1996. George W. Bush used it to hammer Al Gore in 2000.
Today Bush has 200 million dollars ready to shock and awe us with the largest ad campaign in political history. He will spend that money turning Edwards into a Breck Girl, Clark into Beetle Bailey, or Lieberman into the devil himself.
The only way Democrats can compete this summer is for 2 million people, or more, to match Bush's $200 million with $200 million of their own. Our campaign can do that. Theirs can't. We would be proud to serve with any one of these worthy gentlemen, but the law as written, the law we will follow through this November, gives them no hope of victory, none.
Run to the right, become the only hope, and the nomination is ours.
Then comes the hard part.
radio ads open thread
Yesterday, a governor of a small rural state lost in New Hampshire to a Massachusetts Senator. The parallels to Clinton in 1992 are strong, but they end today. From here on out, it is Dean making his own history. Clinton lost the first ten contests and regrouped in the South. Dean can't afford to lose ten contests and his natural base is the West. We need to focus on how Dean can win, and today we must stop looking at 1992.
Dean is on familiar ground again - while seasoned analysts like Kos have written him off, I think they are unconsciously) guilty of drinking the media self-importance Kool Aid. Even if Kos is right that the media has an interest to "end this thing as quickly as possible" (I disagree - the media thrives on frontrunner-underdog narratives), it's the height of cynicism to suggest that the voters truly are irrelevant. The primary is ours, not theirs.
I see a very simple scenario ahead. Dean is the anti-Kerry. Only these two candidates have the resources to compete against Bush. Edwards and Clark have celebrity status but the media oxygen has been sucked away - they rate editorials and analysis, but very little actual coverage. Watch for E and C to start sharpening attacks on one of the front-runners and leaving the other alone - my guess is K/E and D/C form "gentlemen's alliances" which may translate to actual Veep roles after the nomination - but don't bet that any of these four will drop out until the final bell (barring some disaster such as Edwards losing badly in SC).
From here, it's a media war. Not candidates doing barbecues and high school speeches (though those will of course continue), but a classic ad blitz on radio and television. In this war, the Dean grassroots (organized through the Dean Commons) will act in parallel to the Dean Unions (especially in Wisconsin and Michigan). The opponent is the well-oiled, and highly experienced, establishment machine that Kerry inherits. Either of these are a force to be reckoned with, and we will see K and D pick up states delivered to each by reasonable, neither tight nor massive, margins. The battle will last all the way to the convention and victory is directly related to effort on the ground, precinct by precinct, state by state, delegate by delegate.
That means it is up to us. Why hasn't that bat broken $700K yet? Dean busted his arse for two years in New Hampshire. Amanda and Jason and Anna froze theirs going from house to house, street to street, door to door. What have we done? NOT ENOUGH.
New Hampshire Focusing on Iraq, Health Care and Economy
Howard Dean the man for the job
Dean Sees Silver Lining in Second Place
Dean 'very pleased' with New Hampshire finish
Kerry wins again
Florida could play big role in nomination
Tuesday, January 27, 2004
How We Will Beat Kerry
All week Dean has been telling us how to beat John Kerry. We haven’t been listening. Kerry won Iowa by out-organizing us, and won New Hampshire by stealing our message.
He will not win again.
Howard Dean has shown us the way, in the debates, and in his town hall meetings. We can easily run to Kerry's right, on all the key issues, not just using rhetoric, but with hard facts. It comes down to these three key points:
1. Get this, South Carolina. Dean was FOR Gulf War I. Kerry voted AGAINST. Saddam Hussein was in Kuwait, Bush I had the approval of the UN, he had the entire world on our side and John F. Kerry voted NO. Then, when Bush II had no case, Kerry voted aye, and now tries to pretend he didn't. He’s a fraud on national security.
2. Listen up, Missouri. Dean can BALANCE A BUDGET, Kerry never has. John Kerry voted FOR this record deficit, both for tax cuts and spending increases. Want to visit Canada, Australia, Europe or Japan? YOU CAN’T AFFORD IT. That’s just the first step in a rapid process of economic destruction that can only be reversed by moving to balanced budgets, as in the 1990s. Howard Dean has balanced budgets. He will balance this one. He's a grown-up.
3. Are you hearing this in Arizona? Dean can PASS his health care program. Kerry can’t. Dean’s plan is simple. Buy insurance for the neediest, sell it to the nearly-needy. No big bureaucracy, no change in your present coverage. He did it in Vermont, which is no wealthier than the average state. Kerry wants a BIG GOVERNMENT PROGRAM for health care, another HillaryCare plan that won’t pass and thus won’t solve anything.
The good news, troops, is we will have a lot of help all next week. Edwards will be in South Carolina, hammering home these same points. Clark will be in Oklahoma. Even Joe Lieberman will be saying this in Delaware.
Yes, we need some new ads, and some new literature, but these are the facts. These are just the points Dean hammered home on the stump this last week. The problem is it didn’t sink in. No candidate from Massachusetts has ever lost the New Hampshire primary, and that streak continues.
So John Kerry tonight takes his place alongside President Henry Cabot Lodge, President Edward M. Kennedy, President Michael Dukakis and President Paul Tsongas. Fine.
We have him right where we want him.
Now let’s go out, prove the case, win the marathon, then go after George W. Bush.
Do You Want to Stand Up, or Sit Down? http://www.cnn.com/ELECTION/2004/primaries/pages/epolls/NH/index.html
Some interesting exit polling from CNN:
29% of New Hampshire voters said that "standing up for beliefs" was their top quality in a candidate. Dean led all candidates on that score (47% to Kerry's 20%). That was the top quality voters were looking for in their candidate. Another interesting take was on the candidate "most likely to shake things up" - again Dean overwhelmingly (44% to Clark's 14% with Edwards at 13% and Kerry at 12%).
What this polling tells me is that voters are afraid. They're afraid of George Bush, and they're voting for Kerry because 60% of them think he's "most electable." For my money, a leader who "stands up for his beliefs" and "shakes things up" is exactly the candidate who is "electable."
Let's all work together for first on February 3rd!
How We Will Beat Kerry
"A Crushing Defeat"
Dean Matching Funds Challenge http://www.deanforamerica.com/site/TR?pg=personal&fr_id=1090&px=1179278
real-time precinct results coming in http://www.thewmurchannel.com/politics/2792974/detail.html
Dean on Hannity tonight
shamelessly stolen from the o-blog.. BTW Kucinich is on with Hannity right now and doing really a great job!
Open Thread: New Hampshire Primary
Update: Polls are closed. MSNBC and CNN are both saying it's a close race according to exit polls.
Update: Fox News says exit polling is Kerry by seven points. Also reports Trippi would be greatly pleased with those numbers.
Update: CNN has projected that Sen. John Kerry has won New Hampshire.
Update: MSNBC has projected that Sen. John Kerry has won New Hampshire.
Update: Fox News has projected that Sen. John Kerry has won New Hampshire.
Report from Manchester, NH
I'm here in the Manchester office where there are about 30 of us (mostly from Massachusetts for Dean) making phone calls to strong Dean-leaners, trying to get every last potential Dean voter to the polls. This place is absolutely throbbing with voices, phones ringing, and people dashing around.
About an hour ago, Tom Hughes (NH Field Director) announced that they're cautiously optimistic but we need to pull out all the stops this afternoon. He was really pumped and led the whole HQ in several rousing rounds of clapping and foot stomping. The building was shaking!!!
If you're in NH, do whatever you can in the next few hours. If you're not in NH and you can make it here, start driving now! And if you can't make it, send happy thoughts and good karma to all of us in NH! We're gonna be hoarse by tonight, I swear. Oh and pray for the snow to wait 'til 8pm when the polls close!
Remains to be seen if we'll get home to Boston tonight, what with the storm and all. We'll all be gathering at the Univ of Southern NH to watch the returns and listen to Gov. Dean once the resolts are announced, so we may be here late and by then there may be much white stuff to drive through. But we brought our pillows and blankets in case we need to crash here for the night. ;-)
Half-Time Score http://www.dailykos.com/story/2004/1/27/185137/760
Fingers crossed folks. He notes in his item (linked at the headline) that these are like half-time scores at the Super Bowl, and may mean absolutely nothing. But there are good signs from Karen Hicks' visibility operation, and the game isn't over until the final whistle.
If these scores hold up, we'll have enough to call it a comeback. If we eke out even a one-vote victory, we're the lead story.
One more note. Kos says MSNBC will broadcast exit poll numbers at 4 PM.
Don't. Give. Up.
fashion observations done right http://www.prospect.org/weblog/archives/2004/01/index.html#002309
Today, though, Garance Franke-Ruta does fashion analysis right. Not by inferring from the Doctors Deans' clothes what they are trying to spin, but a simple observation of who they are:
If you've ever spent time in the medical arena you know that being a physician is something very different from being an attorney, which is what John Edwards, John Kerry, and Joe Lieberman are. Your stance to the world is simply different if you're a physician, because -- outside of a few specialties, like plastic surgery -- your power doesn't come from how you look or how you appear or even how you sound. It comes from your knowledge and the capacity to do things no one else is authorized to do in their daily lives -- to touch bodies, to demand of individuals, to prescribe courses of action -- and from the human power of interaction. You can't convince people to be healed, no matter how eloquently you speak about disease and suffering or what you wear. You have to actually do something to make a person better. You also have to do the right thing. And if you don't, the consequences can be dire and literally deadly.
The Deans today have doubtless been shaped by their profession as much as their state of residence: Judy Dean wears exam-room shoes, a pair of comfortable slip-ons with rubber wedge heels that seemed a close relative of nurse's shoes, and Howard wears penny-loafers. He's got a pair of coke-bottle-thick gold-wire-rimmed aviator style glasses he wears sometimes when he thinks the press isn't looking. He still wears a square-faced, gold-tone watch that would look perfect poking out of a white, lab-coated sleeve. She doesn't wear make-up -- not even powder -- and looks like a person who has spent years in a job where how she looked was entirely secondary to what she could do. They are doctors, not Vermont hippies, and they helps explain their anti-aesthetic aesthetic as much as anything else.
Henry Cabot Lodge http://www.politicallibrary.org/TallState/1964rep.html
Before you look at the last polls (which show Kerry pulling away), and before we see any real results (which may be quite different) a little historical perspective for y'all.
Back in 1964 the Republican Party faced a choice between fighting or accomodating. Democrats had been in power most of the previous 32 years. The only exception, Dwight Eisenhower, had come from the accomodationist or "Dewey" wing of the party, and his vice president, Richard Nixon, failed election in 1960.
But there was a new voice in the world, a Republican telling his fellow party members that they needed to stand up for themselves, unafraid, that they must have Republican principles. He even had a book, "The Conscience of a Conservative."
The man, of course, was Barry Goldwater.
Now I know I'm going to be roundly criticized for this post, because, in the end, Goldwater lost the election. But Goldwater also changed history. Goldwater took over the Republican Party for conservatism, which was the first step toward taking over the country. He was a very important figure.
Anyway, you may be interested in knowing how Goldwater did in New Hampshire.
He got stomped.
Goldwater finished in a near-tie for second with Nelson Rockefeller, at about 20% of the vote, and the winner was a "favorite son," Henry Cabot Lodge of Massachusetts. Lodge, who had been Nixon's running mate in 1960, was an accomodationist, which we'd now call a "liberal" Republican. He was cagey, had made a career of working at the feet of rampant Democracy, and he represented the fear that a full-throated roar on behalf of principle would not work.
In the end, remember, Lodge was wrong. In the end, Goldwater won the nomination. Yes, he failed at the election, but he turned his party, and he turned history.
I said this six months ago. If that's the worst you can say of Howard Dean, and I think it is, then he is a major, vital, important figure in our time, and his cause is worth fighting for.
The Misunderstanding of Judy Dean
Democrats fire shots in final New Hampshire push
Six signs to watch in New Hampshire vote
Congressman visits Blacksburg to gain support for Dean
Monday, January 26, 2004
Open Thread: The Daily Show
The Only Thing We Have To Fear http://www.hpol.org/fdr/inaug/
The rallies have been huge. The candidate has been wonderful. He won the debate by going consistently to the opponent's right, in a state that lets independents and Republicans vote in the primary. The press has begun ganging up on the other guy for a change. The polls have been moving. The field organization is first-rate. We have all the late momentum.
But I am also prepared for the possibility we may lose tomorrow, to John Kerry.
Two sets of numbers concern me. First, over half those surveyed think John Kerry can beat Bush. Second, a Newsweek poll actually shows Kerry beating Bush.
Many Democrats would sell their souls to beat Bush. And, in New Hampshire, many may be about to.
Because I have a better chance of beating George W. Bush than John Kerry has. We have seen this movie before. Kerry was Michael Dukakis' Lieutenant-Governor. As a Senator, Kerry has usually been in the minority.
Kerry has spent his entire public life on the defensive, and it shows. He's cagey. He voted for the war, not because he thought it was right, but because he figured he could spin it, as he has. He voted for No Child Left Behind. When Bush has bullied, Kerry has retreated, like a good lieutenant before a superior foe. Then he has told voters that, no, that wasn't a retreat, it was a "strategic withdrawal," a "reconnaissance in force."
Governor Dean, on the other hand, has been a political general. Yes, it was a small state. Yes, most were modest battles. But he won them, even the tough ones. And he made life better.
So Dean's not the trouble. The "I Have A Scream" speech isn't the trouble. The trouble is this whole concept of "the Democratic wing of the Democratic Party." (Polls show liberals are with us, moderates with the more-liberal Kerry.)
I believe in the Democratic wing of the Democratic Party. We can't hope to win, as Democrats, until we're proud to stand as Democrats again. We can't win, as Democrats, until we act like Democrats again, until we stand fast again, until we refuse to retreat again, until we are ready to attack and win again.
John Kerry won't do that. His public career shows no examples of the personal courage he displayed in Vietnam, or in the anti-war movement.
But when you've been beat like a dog long enough, as Democrats have, your courage can fail you.
Franklin Roosevelt was right. What we really have to fear, tomorrow, from our fellow Democrats, is fear itself.
media navel-gazing http://www.msnbc.msn.com/Default.aspx?id=4064624&p1=0
But there is a real media bias, as opposed to political-opinion-writer-masquerading-as-real-journalist bias. And you can find no better rigorous documentation of that bias by consulting one of the finest new blogs on the web - the Campaign Desk from the Columbia School of Journalism. The blog is fantastic (and doesn't spare the Dean campaign or any other - keeping us a bit honest too). One of the recurring topics is "Spin Buster", which documents exactly how the media feeds on itself. Their systematic dissection of how Dean's Rebel Yell became the Angry Dean meme is essential reading in understanding how reporters end up writing pieces "devoted solely to the storyline that they have helped to create."
Keep the CJR blog on your reading list - and you'll learn what media bias really is.
Greetings from New Hampshire
I've had no time to post for days now. Frankly, I'm still recovering from Iowa. But this is my third day in NH and I just wanted to chime in with my two cents.
First, allow me to say a big 'ol WORD to Anna's post below about why we lost in Iowa. Our precinct captins not being experienced and well-trained and ready to play hardball and way too young -- this was the weakest link. Period. Lots of other factors -- most notably the toolish media -- but the precinct captains would be at the top of my Top Ten List of Reasons Dean Lost Iowa. Live and learn, eh?
That said, Karen Hicks runs a much different and much tighter ship here. I have several friends who work in Manchester HQ and they rave about her. This gives me great hope.
I've been to several events up here over the past few days. Had the privelege of seeing Howard and Judy at the "Women for Dean" event the other day. If you haven't seen the video of the event, please do. It's available at C-SPAN, I believe. I'd post the link but I have only a few moments to post. :-)
Anyway, Dean was just fabulous at this forum on women's issues. Judy was great, too. They both came by the overflow room prior to the main event. I happened to be in the front row of the overflow crowd so I got to shake both their hands and get some good pics. As he was exiting, a group of African-American teens from Chicago sang their Dean rap song for the Drs. Dean. It was so great -- they had led the whole room singing it a few times as we were waiting. Here's how it went (my memory isn't perfect):
I'm a Deanocrat
I'm a Deanocrat
It's not about where we've been
It's about where we're goin'
Where are we goin'?
To DC, baby!
To DC, baby!
Needless to say, the Deans loved it. A great moment.
This morning, I was at a town hall event where Howard and Judy both spoke...preceded by Martin Sheen. This was a highlight -- our MA group just missed Martin in Iowa and we were quite bummed. He did not dissapoint. He compared Dean to Bobby Kennedy -- a comparison I wholeheartedly endorse. Dean did very well, altho it was a more subdued crowd so there was a tad less energy for him to feed off and he seemed tired. There were also several incredibly rude and loud LaRouche hecklers who, god willing, will not be the focus of much media coverage. They were yelling and screaming about how Dean is the only Dem candidate who's never criticised Dick Cheney (LOL) and that Dean is hence a lier, etc. Typical loony ravings. Dean was quite patient with them, saying he respected their freedom of speech and they should do the same and let the woman in the audience who was waiting to ask a question do so. When they wouldn't shut up, he asked his staff and the security folks to please remove the hecklers. The crowd was totally cheering him on.
Oh another tidbit. Some of us from MA have been trying to get the media to pay attention to the fact that (1) John Kerry does not have much popular support in his home state; he is not loved a la Ted Kennedy; his constituent service stinks and everyone knows it; his legislative record is mediocre at best; his vote on Gulf War 2 pissed off a ton of his constituents etc. and (2) Dean has enormous support in MA. We've been trying to get press coverage here in NH for several elected officials who've endorsed Dean. There was a good article in yesterday's NY Times on the subject -- check it out.
Anyway, at the Dean-Sheen-Dean event today (hee), who should sit down next to me and ask if I'm an undecided NH voter or a Dean supporter? Gloria Borger. So I bent her ear on the Kerry-not-popular-in-MA-but-Dean-very-popular-in-MA angle. She was polite but probably won't follow up. Ah well, will keep trying.
Lots to do, must get a move on. Onward!
Election 2008 feed
Obama 2008 - I want my country back
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.