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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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Thursday, January 08, 2004


Trippi Letter

posted by Editor at Thursday, January 08, 2004 permalink View blog reactions
From Dean for America:
January 8, 2004

Dear Steve Murphy,

I am saddened by your letter today because sleazy tactics like yours are exactly the reason that people have stopped participating in the political process.

Let me be clear, your allegation is ridiculous. The 3,500 volunteers who have pledged to come to Iowa by caucus time are people who believe in a better America and a stronger democracy. Many are first time voters who have chosen to reengage in the political process because they understand that government has stopped working for the people. They know that Howard Dean is a different type of politician, and if we asked them to participate in the activities you allege, they would get in their cars and drive home.

We understand that the grassroots enthusiasm this campaign has generated and the over 3,500 volunteers who are canvassing in Iowa this month is threatening to Dick Gephardt. But that is no excuse for you to try to make Iowans question the motives of these idealistic Americans who are paying their own way to Iowa to canvass. In doing so, you are practicing precisely the type of politics that these volunteers are dedicating their time and effort to stopping.

People are tired of this type of campaigning, which is why we've been energizing voters across the country with our message of hope and of a better democracy. As Governor Dean often says, it's not enough for us to change presidents we need to change the way politics work.

Frankly, Steve, baseless political allegations like the one in your letter lead me to believe more and more that your campaign is not the one to make this change.

These allegations are not just an insult to Howard Dean and me, but they are an insult to all of the new people we're bringing into the process. Instead of these despicable and desperate attacks, you should start running the kind of campaign that inspires and energizes thousands of new voters so much that they want to come to Iowa and campaign for your candidate!

I assure you these allegations are false, and if my word is not good enough for you and Dick Gephardt, for whom I served in 1988 as deputy campaign manager, then it is with a particularly heavy heart that I send this letter.


Joe Trippi
Campaign Manager


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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.