Democrats' Suicide Watch
Dr Dean locks up the chairmanship of the DNC.
Okay, he was not as far-left a governor of Vermont as he was a candidate for President.
Still, Dean epitomizes the paranoid style in contemporary Democratic party politics. It will be very interesting to see if he can run a more moderate, centrist party than his presidential campaign might indicate.
But the prediction here is that the GOP makes further advances in the 2006 national elections.
And 2008 is still far away--but for now take the GOP candidate (probably over Hillary) with 52-53% of the popular vote or more.
UPDATE: Not much sign of moderation here:
Dean Vows to Lead Democrats Back to Power
50 minutes ago
U.S. National - AP
By WILL LESTER, Associated Press Writer
WASHINGTON - Howard Dean (news - web sites) promised cheering supporters Wednesday night he would harness their energy to lead the Democratic Party back to power in the halls of Congress and the White House by 2008.
Slideshow: Democratic Party
The virtually certain incoming chairman of the Democratic National Committee (news - web sites) rallied hundreds of young supporters, and a few he called "young at heart," in a campaign-style appearance at a Washington nightspot within view of the Capitol. In his first public appearance since clinching the chairmanship, he gave a glimpse of the kind of uncompromising leadership he plans for the national party.
The Democrats "are a party of the future, while Republicans are the party of the past," Dean said.
"We need to be proud to be Democrats," said Dean, recalling the kind of exuberant appearances he made during 2003 when he came close to winning the Democratic presidential nomination before collapsing in early 2004 in Iowa.
"We have to never be afraid to say what we believe," Dean said, as the crowd roared its approval. "Above all, we need to stand up for a different vision."
On the steps of the restaurant-brewery where the event was held, he urged supporters to look behind them at the brightly lit, white dome of the Capitol.
"After 2006, we will make major strides in regaining that building, and in 2008 we're going to have it," Dean said. "In 2008, there will be a Democrat walking down Pennsylvania Avenue to the other end."
Supporter Rebecca Cague watched Dean with a wistful smile.
"I feel like he is what we need to revive the party," she said. "He's not afraid to speak his mind; and when he does, he speaks for us."
Dean promised to work closely with top congressional leaders such as Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid and House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi and with Democratic officials at the national, state and local level.
As Dean worked up the crowd, one of his supporters shouted: "Give 'em hell, Howard!"
"I'm trying to be restrained in my new role," Dean said with a mischievous grin.