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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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Friday, July 11, 2003


Nader's run

posted by Aziz P. at Friday, July 11, 2003 permalink View blog reactions
Ralph Nader buys into the "Dean = liberal" meme:

Speaking to reporters at a breakfast this morning, the 69-year-old Mr. Nader said his decision would depend in some measure on the fortunes of the two current Democratic contenders whose politics appear to most closely resemble his own: Representative Dennis J. Kucinich of Ohio and former Gov. Howard Dean of Vermont.

Mr. Nader said any growth in support for Mr. Kucinich, among the most liberal members of Congress, would give him "less reason to go into the election — not no, just less."

As for Dr. Dean, Mr. Nader said he liked what the former governor said in speeches but feared that he would ultimately move toward the center to broaden his appeal.

By equating Dean with Kucinich, Nader is doing damage to Dean. And his statement that Dean or Kucinich give him less reason to run is actually a veiled threat - one that the DLC will pick up on out of fear and use to bash Dean even harder. Nader is leveraging the dissension in the Democratic Party to - paradoxically - give him an excuse to run, as the "rightful" progressive (he knows that Kucinich will not win the nomination, and even if Dean wins he can claim Dean "moved to the center"). Either way, Nader insulates himself.

We must widen the gyre - and convince Greens that it is Dean, not Nader (or Kucinich) who can advance their interests.


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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.