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Dean and His Enemies


I was talking to a Democrat with ties to one of Howard Dean’s rivals and he was saying that all of Dean’s flip-flops were going to hurt him in time. But which of Dean’s rivals is well positioned to make the case for him as a flip-flopper? Joe Lieberman, who’s flipped on Social Security and affirmative action? Dick Gephardt, who’s had more political personae than Hillary Clinton’s had hairstyles? Dennis Kucinich, who discovered he was for Roe after thirty years in politics? John Kerry, that paragon of consistency? This is a flip-flop-rich field, at least compared to the Republican field in 1988, 1996, or 2000, or the Democratic field in 1988 or 1992. (Although the Democrats’ 1988 field included a bunch of abortion flippers.)

This Democrat went on to complain about Dean’s “adulatory press.” He also said that the question of Dean’s electability was being temporarily “blunted”: “Conservative columnists are now pumping him up, pretending to be afraid of him for I think less than honorable reasons.”


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