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Jun. 15th, 2005 @ 11:46 am Howard Dean
I'm surprised more people haven't figured out what Howard Dean is doing.

First, people are actually talking about him. He's on Meet The Press, and being talked about everywhere. His remarks are not particularly brilliant, and not even particularly shocking that someone like him is saying things like that.

It seems like Fox News and the rest of the Republican Party are actually taking the bait. Instead of ignoring the Democrats which is what they usually do, they're talking about how crazy and out of control Dean is. You may notice that Dean's remarks, although strident, are nowhere near out of control. (Telling Patrick Leahy to fuck off on the Senate floor, well, that's my definition of out of control.)

Dean is taking his public image of a crazy man from the screaming incident (which in and of itself was blown out of proportion) and he's utlizing it to get additional publicity for the Dems by making some incredibly obvious remarks about Republicans that are getting them all defensive and uppity, forcing them to talk about that rather than their own agenda. It's exactly what the Republicans have been doing for over two decades. A few more months of Dean knocking the Republicans off balance, he'll have the floor, and he'l start making real comments about the issues and he'll have people listening.

You've also got some of the Dems in congress sort of disavowing Dean. I'm not sure if that's part of the strategy (let Dean be the person who can say all the things everyone else can't, while saying "he doesn't speak for us" when clearly, as party chairman, he does) or if they're just being wussies. If the former, brilliant; if the latter, they're fools but I guess I understand because it's been so long they've been living in the shadow of Republicans thanking them for whatever crumbs they can drop as they continue their rapacious dismantling of all that is good in this country that the congressional Dems might have lost a touch of backbone.

Meanwhile, behind the scenes, Dean's rebuilding the party infrastructure, giving money to states, getting small donors in line, and generally doing to the DNC the things he did to his own campaign, which despite its sudden end, was a model of things to come.

I think things are getting interesting.
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klaatu
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From:angryjonny
Date:June 15th, 2005 09:13 am (UTC)

To paraphrase PT Barnum

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"Say whatever you want about me, just make sure you spell my name right"

I agree with you that Dean is making a very shrewd play at the Republicans, but I sincerely doubt that- without some major coup (a successful impeachment of Bush, I can hope)- he will curry the DNC's favor enough to overtake their darling Hillary for the 2008 party nomination
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From:doughnutman
Date:June 15th, 2005 09:33 am (UTC)

Re: To paraphrase PT Barnum

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Dean is really making Hillary look like a solid moderate, giving her the perfect situation to defeat any Republican senator who decides to run for President. Her poll numbers are better the Bush's.
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From:angryjonny
Date:June 15th, 2005 09:45 am (UTC)

Re: To paraphrase PT Barnum

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That's an interesting point that I didn't consider... setting him up as the proverbial strawman for the GOP to knock down while Hillary takes the sizeable moderate vote.

As for the poll numbers, though, weren't both Gore and Kerry ahead of Bush? Hell, I think Strom Thurmond's corpse is ahead of Bush in the polls.
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From:doughnutman
Date:June 15th, 2005 10:11 am (UTC)

Re: To paraphrase PT Barnum

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I did not mean that Hillary is ahead of Bush in a one on one poll(altough she is). I was referring to that her positive rating is higher and her negative ratings are lower then Bush's. Most people feel that Hillary is to hated to win the Presidency, yet she is hated less then Bush is.
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From:angryjonny
Date:June 15th, 2005 10:33 am (UTC)

Re: To paraphrase PT Barnum

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Most people feel that Hillary is to hated to win the Presidency, yet she is hated less then Bush is.

Yeah, well, I guess that's cause she doesn't have that whole Downing Street memo hanging over her head. I wonder if/when Bush is going to get hit with that
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From:mrfantasy
Date:June 15th, 2005 09:36 am (UTC)

Re: To paraphrase PT Barnum

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Taking DNC chair removed him from the 2008 race. No one runs for President immediately after being party chair. I'm pretty sure he knew that. I'm still torn on a Hillary run but I think it has more of a shot than most people are willing to admit. I know it will take a lot of in-your-face attitude from Democrats to be successful, and Dean will help with that.

There's some stuff on Kos that talks about these sort of things.
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From:angryjonny
Date:June 15th, 2005 09:47 am (UTC)

Re: To paraphrase PT Barnum

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Interesting. I'll take a look at the Kos stuff after lunch. I, personally, though Dean was going to shoot the moon for the nomination but, as I said to doughnutman, I hadn't considered the possibility that he is working in Hillary's interests.
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From:blackbytes
Date:June 15th, 2005 10:09 pm (UTC)
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Mike,

While I agree Hillary is an attractive and more than competent candidate, there's no chance in HELL she'll ever be elected President in 2008. Since our talk in my office, I've taken an informal poll of men I know and whether they'd vote Hill in '08. Results: 0 for, 7 against.

They all ended with my pointed question of "No bull-shti - would you vote for Hillary Clinton?"

Results above, unfortunately. It's not going to happen, and if she runs, we'll end up with dcheney as our leader. Who else is there???