Saturday, August 30, 2003

Well, this is just too funny 

The John Aschroft Patriot Act Summer Tour. (includes animation and sound)

Dean in the Sat. Papers 

The Washington Post suggests that Dean has flip-flopped on "several key issues", which proves he is the front runner (why else would he be on the front page).

The unofficial Dean site has a full response. Here's the deal: a candidate is allowed to change his mind over the course of a decade, given changing circumstances. In some of the statements cited by the Washington Post, the previous position was taken six years ago? Once you take a position in public alive, can you not change your mind without being accused of being duplicitous?

And the brilliant Adam Nagorney of the New York Times recaps the state of the race. Although, I'm not as concerned with our chances as Adam or some of his sources are.

UPDATE: MSNBC has an article entitled "The Dean Machine: In an era of shouting matches and sound bites, can Howard Dean convince voters he’s the guy to beat George Bush?"

He wasn't a big fan of the preparatory start of the NY part of Sleepless Summer, but he summarizes Dean well:

"In the 40-minute speech, I never saw Howard Dean the bomb-thrower, but did see the emergence of Howard Dean the giant-slayer. This speech wasn’t about mindless attacks on the president (he left those to Congressman Owens), but about pointing out that the country is going in the wrong direction on peace in Iraq, preserving clean air and water, balancing the budget and health care. He’s Bill Clinton without all the lower-lip biting and all the pain-feeling."

Friday, August 29, 2003

More Dean News 

Rudy Texiera has a long post on The Week of Dean.

Meanwhile, is it fair to ask whether John Kerry's campaign is collapsing before it is even officially announced?

That the best you got? 

Well, the Republicans have gone negative:

The Democratic presidential hopeful is drawing heat from City Hall after appearing in front of a graffiti-covered backdrop during a rally at Bryant Park on Tuesday.

"It's unfortunate that Mr. Dean would promote and romanticize a form of vandalism, especially considering this city's success in eliminating this urban blight," said Bloomberg's press secretary Ed Skyler.
Councilman James Oddo, a Staten Island Republican, says the backdrop is an insulting token of bygone 1970s New York.

"We have a pandering politician come in here and basically say to the country that what best symbolizes New York is graffiti and urban decay," Oddo said.
Mr. Oddo and Mr. Bloomberg were unavilable for comment when questioned whether "what best symbolizes New York" are mob bosses.

New Media Speculation Trend Alert 

You probably know about the hints about Wesley Clark and Hillary Clinton. Ah, but that's passe now. Here's the first article about something I've been thinking about: if Bush continues to struggle and his poll #s drop further, would McCain run as a challenger in the GOP primary or even as a third party candidate?

Honestly. He really doesn't like George W. Bush. I wouldn't either, if what happened to McCain in SC happened to me.

I just added a few links (in the left column) to native Missouri blogs and media sources. Check em out.

Thursday, August 28, 2003

From Steve Soto:

Missouri Primary: 2/3/2004, 74 delegates

Past performance:
1984 (Caucus): ???
3/8/1988: Gephardt 57.8%, Jackson 20.2%, Dukakis 11.6%, Simon 4.1%, Gore 2.8%
3/10/1992 (Caucus): Clinton 45.1%, Tsongas 10.2%, Brown 5.7%, Uncommitted 39%
Latest poll:
Kansas City Star: Gephardt 45%, Kerry 13%, Lieberman 11%, Dean 9%

Future results based on history:
Gephardt, Kerry, Dean
Missouri votes like a mix of Midwest and South. Gephardt should win this very easily, and other campaigns are likely to bypass the state rather than risk failure. Brown's poor performance in the 1992 caucus is a bad sign for Dean, so look for Kerry to take the 2004 equivalent of the Dukakis vote. If Edwards were to commit some resources, he could probably take advantage of the Southern influence within the state to have a respectable showing. Chances are he won't bother, so look for Dean's self-organization to beat out Lieberman, who also won't compete here. Second and third place depend alot on who is able to attract the votes of African-Americans who supported Jackson and Clinton.

My main exception to this analysis is the statement that the decade-old performances of Brown and Dukakis are of significance to Dean and Kerry. We are looking at another election, with a different set of issues, in another decade. Dean’s grassroots organization is simply stronger than Kerry’s and it is not unreasonable to expect to take at least the #2 spot. But take a look at Soto’s assessment of other state primaries.

Also note the number of delegates Missouri has: 74. Even if we get 20% of the vote we will give Dean more delegates than he would pick up if he won Delaware. 30% would give him more Missouri delegates than the total number of delegates in New Hampshire.


Work for Halliburton and Bechtel, the only two companies with money to burn.


Check it out. First three paragraphs:

"DES MOINES, Iowa -- Former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean has vaulted into the lead among Iowa Democrats polled this week.

The exclusive KCCI News Channel 8 poll, conducted by Research 2000, finds Dean leading the pack of 10 candidates who are running or considering a run for president of the United States. The poll, conducted Aug. 25 through Aug. 27, shows that if the Iowa caucuses were held today, 25 percent of those polled would support Dean. Missouri Rep. Richard Gephardt is second with 21 percent, Massachusetts Sen. John Kerry is third with 16 percent and Connecticut Sen. Joe Lieberman is fourth with 12 percent. The other candidates are all in single digits.

This newest poll is a huge leap forward for Dean. In the last KCCI NewsChannel 8 poll conducted June, 2003, Dean was in third place with 11 percent. Richard Gephardt was in first place in June with 27 percent. "

Bush the Underdog?

Poor Bush. I guess that he doesn't believe that $200 million will be enough to race against a non-existent Republican challenger. He is now sending out messages to possible donors that portray him as a fundraising underdog.

"Democrats and their allies will have more money to spend attacking the president during the nomination battle than we will have to defend him," campaign chairman Marc Racicot wrote in the fund-raising e-mail sent Wednesday night. "If you need more convincing the president needs your help, consider what the Democrats are saying. The race is just starting, but their rhetoric is already red-hot."

Racicot's e-mail attributes quotes to several Democratic presidential hopefuls criticizing Bush.

Among them, Racicot says former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean stated that Bush might suspend the 2004 election, called Bush "reckless" and "despicable," compared him to the Taliban and said Bush was trying to destroy Social Security, Medicare, public schools and public services.

"This ugly, overheated rhetoric shows Democrats will say anything and stop at nothing to defeat this president," Racicot wrote.

Asked if the comments attributed to Dean were accurate, Dean spokeswoman Tricia Enright was incredulous.

"Compared him to the Taliban? Absolutely not. Suspend the 2004 election? What is that about?" Enright asked. "He said his (Bush's) tax policies were reckless. Obviously all this was taken out of context."


First off, a good article for progressives basically suggesting everyone support Howard Dean because there is a much bigger fight ahead: George W. Bush. (Hat Tip: Eric Thut)

Second, another article from a publication I've never heard of suggesting the GOP is outsourcing fundraising in India. Hey, CAN THE MAINSTREAM PRESS INVESTIGATE THIS?!?!? PLEASE?!?!?? I'd really like to know if this is really true. (Hattip: Becky Wendt)

Third, we've got a couple of possible new entrants: Wesley Clark (probable) and, get this, Hillary Clinton comparing herself to Robert Kennedy. Two words: too late.

Wednesday, August 27, 2003

Sleepless Summer Cartoon


OK, let's take a breath, people. Campaign staffers (bloggers, at that), signing autographs?

In an update to what Chris posted earlier, here are the full results of the latest New Hampshire Poll.

Willkommen, Kate!

In other news, The Boondocks is doing the Democratic Candidates debates this week - today Howard Dean is God's Gift to the Democratic Party.

And the StL folks are engaged in super top secret negotiations to carpool to KC so we can ride your bus to the Harkin Steak Fry. In a fit of irony, the Vegetarian (moi) is organizing it. More as this develops...

Update: We're flying Southwest. See you in Iowa.

Tuesday, August 26, 2003


Kate Gould from Springfield has a post up. Read it here or scroll below.


Dean, with Joe Trippi's suggestion that he would raise at least $10.2M in the 3Q (and I think Trippi's low-balling it), would set a new fundraising record for a Democrat who is not an incumbent. All because of people like you.

How significant is that? Last quarter, no one in the Dems came close to the 7.4 million Dean raised.

Folks, I think you just overthrew the Democratic party establishment. And the 3Q isn't even over yet. Let's keep going.

UPDATE: Stuck in the last paragraph of the story is this NH polling data from Zogby:

"Though polls taken this early in the race can be unreliable predictors, there are statistical signs to back up Dr. Dean's surge in popularity on the street. Zogby International, an independent firm, is scheduled to release Wednesday a poll showing Dr. Dean leading in New Hampshire with 38 percent of the vote to 17 percent for Senator John Kerry; in early July Senator Kerry had 25 percent to Dr. Dean's 22 percent. The poll has a margin of sampling error of 4.5 percentage points. "


I think Ambassador Wilson (the one who attacked the Administration's account of the Niger uranium claim) just accused Karl Rove of illegality. The exact quote:

"At the end of the day, it's of keen interest to me to see whether or not we can get Karl Rove frog-marched out of the White House in handcuffs. And trust me, when I use that name, I measure my words."

If you want more information, read here and here.

And, in other news, I'm sure shipping Iraqi oil through Israel will thrill the Arabs. Great PR move. Win their hearts and minds. And be sure, while you are at it, hiring Saddam's feared intelligence services will also set the Iraqis at ease.


Ann Coulter implodes. Finally.


It is a time of more first and mosts for the Dean campaign. New television commercials are planned to begin airing in six states starting on Friday.

"Mr. Trippi said he expected the television advertising to cost about $1 million as the commercial is placed in selected markets in six states: Arizona, New Mexico, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Washington and Wisconsin.

While most of the other nine Democrats in the field are concentration resources only in the earliest-voting states, the Dean campaign, which already has paid staff on the ground in 12 states, has acted this week as though the general election is just around the corner.

"We are a 50-state campaign," Mr. Trippi said."

The Sleepless Summer Tour has also been drawing the largest crowds. Check out the recording from the rally in San Antonio on Monday night, the Show Me Dean fundraiser got a mention.

Finally, when there are firsts, there are also lasts. The American Prospect seems to get it again with the article "From's Last Stand". I hate to have to many articles from one source, but I couldn't resist this one about the President of the DLC and his remarks on the Dean campaign.

"Whether the left is truly trying to drag the party back in time is a matter of heated dispute in Washington. What's clear is that after two decades at the pinnacle of the Washington power hierarchy, From's ideas have triumphed beyond his wildest dreams, and the central role he's played as a policy entrepreneur in the 1990s is unquestioned. But by publicly involving the DLC in an increasingly nasty battle with Howard Dean, From is causing some of his erstwhile allies to wonder if he's finally lost his touch. "

Monday, August 25, 2003


The American Prospect visits Dean on the Sleepless Summer Tour and finds fault with one line out of a whole speech (which, um, I agree with). Well, I guess they are paid to parse.

Not Geniuses points me to an commentary where a right-wing blogger threatens to kill himself if Dean wins the election. Insert tasteless punch line here.

Courtesy of reader Becky Wendt, here's an article extolling "The Progressive Case for Howard Dean" from Common Cause.

And the Sleepless Summer Tour gets overflow crowds in Spokane, WA and Austin.


And tons of events in your area, whether it be Columbia, St. Louis, KC, Kirkwood, Topeka or the Cape.

BUSH MISDEEDS, PARTS 3,725, 3,726 and 3,727:

The Washington Post leads with a recap of the investigation regarding the Energy Task Force led by Dick Cheney (hey, remember that one), as the General Accounting Office states that:

"Vice President Dick Cheney had stymied their investigation into his energy task force by refusing to turn over key documents."

Well, duh. (OK, I'm a little cynical today).

In fiscal news, the federal budget deficit hit $500 billion, according to recent estimates (which may be underestimating things a tad, given that it is the Congressional Budget Office).

And, in the scandal that isn't getting any attention, MSNBC is reporting that the White House directed the EPA to give misleading information to New Yorkers regarding the environmental risk caused by the air quality in NY post 9-11:

"The White House “convinced EPA to add reassuring statements and delete cautionary ones” by having the National Security Council control EPA communications in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks, according to a report issued late Thursday by EPA Inspector General Nikki L. Tinsley."
"In all, the EPA issued five press releases within 10 days of the attacks and four more by the end of 2001 reassuring the public about air quality. But it wasn’t until June 2002 that the EPA determined that air quality had returned to pre-Sept. 11 levels - well after respiratory ailments and other problems began to surface in hundreds of workers cleaning dusty offices and apartments."

Can someone explain to me how the National Security Agency can comment on environmental matters? OK, I'm naive. I know.


&C, The New Republic's blog, has been one of the few that understands that Dean's appeal is not strictly a left-wing pheomenon that will make him unlectable against Bush:

"What Dean's critics missed before all the flip-flopping began, and what they're likely to keep missing now, is that Dean's popularity with the left wing of the Democratic Party had much less to do with substance than with style and tone--namely, his seething anger toward the president. And, as we recently pointed out, this fact is precisely why he's probably better positioned to move to the center than any other Democratic candidate, most of whom have made more substantive plays for the liberal vote. In fact, as long as Dean sticks with the anger shtick, there are probably few limits (within reason) to the number of moderate positions he can take without alienating his base. Better yet, as we're about to see, Dean can do it early enough in the primary campaign that he will have almost entirely remade his image long before general election voters start paying attention. Something tells us John Kerry and Dick Gephardt don't enjoy the same luxury."


This is interesting, but too brief. Washington Post columnist Fred Hiatt asking Dean questions regarding his foreign policy instincts.

Sunday, August 24, 2003


5,000 in Portland, Oregon. If you think that's an exaggeration, look at the picture.


UPDATE: 15, 000 in Seattle?!? On a Sunday night?!? There are no words. WOW!


According to an Indian publication, the GOP is outsourcing their fundraising efforts to INDIA:

"The US Republican Party now has a band of young and enthusiastic fund-raisers in Noida and Gurgaon."
"This is the first time such a project has been handed out to a company outside the US. The market research and public relations companies engaged by the party usually undertake such projects."
"India has generated considerable interest amongst global corporations looking at outsourcing key business processes. According to the National Association of Software and Services Companies (Nasscom), the Indian business process outsourcing sector has seen a four-fold increase in employment from 25,000 in 1999 to 106,000 in 2002."

I'd like to see it in a publication I've heard of, but if this is true, it is absolutely unbelievable. I mean, this is so remarkably stupid from a PR sense that I find it hard to believe (except they've done similarly dumb stuff). If this is picked up elsewhere, please post in the comments.


Well, that was quick. The the hearing seemed as funny as Franken's book. Buy Franken's book here.


Here's the first piece, where the AP states that Howard Dean is "promoting himself like a rock star." Guess what? He is a rock star.


From Newsweek:

"Against this backdrop, President George W. Bush’s approval ratings continue to decline. His current approval rating of 53 percent is down 18 percent from April. And for the first time since the question was initially asked last fall, more registered voters say they would not like to see him re-elected to another term as president (49 percent) than re-elected. Forty-four percent would favor giving Bush a second term; in April, 52 percent backed Bush for a second term and 38 percent did not."

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