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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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Tuesday, October 28, 2003


Waste, Chaos and Cronyism

posted by Trammell at Tuesday, October 28, 2003 permalink View blog reactions
I was just remarking to a friend that these Republican anti-Bush defections are becoming awfully common, and along comes Howard Fineman with this excellent Newsweek cover story that may not be surprising to many of us, but is certain to take some of the Free-Roaming GOP by surprise:
HILARY CLEVELAND of New London, N.H., goes way back with the Bush family. Her late husband, James Colgate (Jimmy) Cleveland, was a Republican in Congress, where his paddle-ball partner in the House gym was George H.W. Bush. Hilary served on the Andover board with Barbara Bush and was finance chair of Bush's primary campaign in New Hampshire in 1980. She organized locally for George W. in 2000. But the other day, upset over the war in Iraq, she left the Republican Party, changing her registration to "undeclared" so she could vote for Dr. Howard Dean in the Democratic primary in January. "You don't go to war without valid reason," she said, "or international support." Bush's call for $87 billion in new spending on Iraq offended her Yankee sense of thrift: "I believe in fiscal integrity and balanced budgets, and spending so much doesn't seem sound."

IF PRESIDENCIES are destined to crumble, the cracks tend to appear first in the Granite State, where independents flock to one party's primary or another to presage the attitude -- and anger -- that centrist "swing voters" will express nationwide months later. Bush remains personally well liked in New Hampshire -- and nationally. According to the newest NEWSWEEK Poll, his job-approval rating is holding at 51 percent. But the human and financial costs of the war -- symbolized by death-a-day news reports and the $87 billion funding request -- have made Dean a power in the state, and are beginning to worry administration insiders. "If we don't get Iraq right in time," fretted one National Security Council official, "we could lose the election."
But hey, read the whole article...


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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.