The Spin Game -- Gone Bad

For months the other campaigns, pundits, and others spun each other and the press in an attempt to marginalize Howard Dean. "He's not electable" they said -- despite the fact that he is the only candidate bringing thousands of people who have never participated in politics into his campaign. Meetups "are like a bar scene from Star Wars" they said -- even though if you go to a Meetup or look at the picture below of the Austin Rally -- you see Americans who are willing to do the hard work of making Democracy stronger in their local community, people who are becomming more involved and more active, and are energized by one candidacy -- Howard Dean's.

They have tried to marginalize Howard Dean by saying he is George McGovern (which did not work) so now they are labeling him as Jerry Brown (which won't work either). It won't work because anybody who sees him and listens to him knows he isn't anybody but Howard Dean. Too many in the press have bought the spin and repeated it over and over again -- but the spin isn't working. Why because it is a mistake to try to label Howard Dean -- I gave up trying to figure out how to label him years ago.

Howard Dean bases his decisions on the facts (I think its the doctor in him) And if the facts as he sees them say invading Afganistan is the right decision he supports it (as he did) and if the facts in front of him say that Iraq is the wrong war at the wrong time for our country he says so. If we can figure a way to REALLY provide health coverage for every American -- he looks at the facts -- and develops a plan to get it done (as he did for 97% of the children in Vermont and 91% of adults). And yes if the facts say Vermont does not need a ton of gun control laws (5 homicides in one year in which he was governor) then he doesn't see a big need for making gun control laws in Vermont -- and says lets keep the federal laws that we have, close the gun show loophole -- and let each state decide what laws they want to add. And its why regardless of the popular opinion -- when the facts as a doctor tell him there is no such thing as "partial birth abortion" he says so loud and clear.

What the spinsters from the other campaigns, and the pundits have either failed to realize, or report, or just don't get is it isn't the war, or any of these things -- its that Howard Dean is real, he has given exactly two prepared speeches in this campaign -- count em two. What they have haven't reported, or have not figured out is that if America is looking for a "programmed" candidate for President -- there are plenty of them in this field. Howard Dean is giving people a choice -- he's the unprogrammed candidate. He is who he is -- Howard Dean -- he defies labels -- yet they persist in labeling him. And no matter how hard they spin it another way -- it will not work -- because when people see him -- the spin does not ring true.

But the wake up call is coming -- our growth will not stay contained in the coffee shops and restaurants where Dean Meetups are held. Three months ago it was 500 to 600 at a New York Meetup, two weeks ago it was 1,200 strong from all across the state of Washington, and last night in Austin 3,200 people came to see Howard Dean speak and join our campaign.

We must make June ours -- we need to make the June 23rd Declaration of Candidacy events a display of the Dean grassroots strength across this country -- please sign up on our website for a June 23rd event or create one with our new organizing tools. We surprised everyone with the amount we raised in the last reporting period in March -- on June 30th (just 20 days from now) we must reach and surpass our fundraising goals again. We could not have surprised anyone in March without the netroots and grassroots support of hundreds of thousands of dollars of small donations, and we will not do it in June without the same response from every Dean supporter who can afford to make a contribution this month -- and every penny will count.

The time is now -- we need everyone's help now more than ever. We can expose the spin of the other campaigns for what it is -- a failed attempt to marginalize a candidate, a campaign, and an energized grassroots -- that simply cannot be marginalized. I mean its time to make these people's jaws drop. Last night mine did when I heard about Austin, as I suspect many of your's did when you heard about it - and we know what we really are.


3,200 people showed up to hear Howard Dean speak at the Plaza Saltillo in Austin on Monday, June 9th.


From this morning's The Note:

We've said it before, and we'll say it again: Howard Dean might win both Iowa and New Hampshire; Howard Dean is the only major candidate in the race who talks like both a governor AND a real person from outside Washington; Howard Dean is really using the Internet to fundraise and organize (It ain't just hype … .); Howard Dean connects regularly with Democratic audiences in a way that the others can do only sporadically; Howard Dean has a long record of policy thoughtfulness and a capacity to connect it to the real lives of real people that governors do best (and is, dare we say it, Clintonesque) ; and he evinces real anger at George Bush's polices.

The dirty little (not-so) secret of political strategists of both parties is how hard it is to get people interested in, and emotional about, politics. Howard Dean is doing that, and he is bringing new (and young) people into the process. In a crowded field, that is a good thing.


You hear it everywhere. The pundits discuss Howard Dean. They discuss the 33,100 people signed up for Dean Meetups. They discuss the blog, sometimes, and the netroots momentum behind Howard Dean. And then they say, "It remains to be seen whether this Internet activism will make any difference in the real world, or on election day."

What they miss is that it is making a difference, today, in the real world. Last night, 3,200 people showed up in Austin, Texas to hear Howard Dean speak for 20 minutes. The event was organized online in less than ten days by local volunteers. 3,200 people. Carl with a K puts the number into perspective:

In 1999-2000 when I began work on Senator John McCain's campaign... getting people to show up for an impromptu political rally outside of New Hampshire was near impossible... unthinkable even.

Things slowly changed as the campaign progressed and AFTER New Hampshire it was not uncommon in South Carolina for the campaign to be greeted by screaming McCainiacs numbering in the 1500-2000 range. That's an important point to understand. McCain's momentum flowed from state to state as he did better. There is no way we could have flown to Nashville (Gore's hometown) and been welcomed by 3,000 supporters even if it had been the day after New Hampshire at the height of his popularity.

It becomes more clear each day that this campaign is different from any other insurgent candidacy of the past. Doctor Dean has a national support network ready at any time to turn out for him and get the job done. That's something the Gary Hart's and John McCain's of this world were never able to harness let alone 6 months before a vote was taken.

3,200 people showing up for Howard Dean is incredible. We can also demonstrate the power of the netroots by again exceeding fundraising expectations over the Internet. Click here to contribute to Howard Dean's campaign for America. We have only twenty days before the end of the second quarter.


Thank you, Texas!! Last night was truly amazing. 3,200 people showed up for a rally for Gov. Dean in Austin. We had been told that 300 people were waiting for the Gov. When we arrived at the rally site is was clear that someone forgot a zero! Being in George Bush's home state made the size of the crowd even more exciting. The Gov. spoke for about 20 minutes and had the crowd roaring - especially when he referenced the current President! What made the rally so impressive was that it was organized in ten days primarily over the internet. When we got in the car after the event the Gov. was elated and, needless to say, amazed by the size of the crowd.

Right now we're driving from Austin to Houston for two events. This is a trip to Texas that we will never forget.



This was a truly amazing night. 10:30 pm, end of a very long day here in Burlington... Nicco and I had just spooled up Trippi's email about the Declaration parties on June 23rd... and all of a sudden Burlington HQ just starts to hum with excitement as word filters in about what is happening in Austin. 3,200 people showed up for a rally for Howard Dean in Austin, Texas tonight! It's hard to put perspective on just how massive an event that is, and how such a turnout is simply unheard of.

The rally was a stand-alone for Howard Dean-- the people were there to see him. The event was organized locally by volunteers.

Has this ever happened, six months before the first vote is cast in a primary? 18 months before the general election, 3,200 people rally for an opposing candidate in the capital city of a sitting President?

Over 3,200 numbered name tags were given out. Cell phone reports have it that all the local stations were there-- the Governor did interviews afterward. We're working to get video up on Howard Dean TV and photos up on the blog. Send us any photos at deanforum@deanforamerica.com.

Rick Klau helped us break the story, while Blogger was down. We're awaiting a report from Kate O'Connor; meanwhile, the unofficial Dean blog has a good report.

The confidential schedule said: expect approx. 300 people. We were stunned by the turnout.


There are now 33,000 people signed up to Meetup for Howard Dean on the first Wednesday of every month.

For those who haven't yet seen them, click here to check out the new meeting tools that we launched only days ago. These tools allow member of Meetup and other Dean supporters to arrange or find any type of event online-- house parties, viewing parties, recruiting efforts, tabling days, or any other project you want to do to help elect Howard Dean the next President of the United States.

You can set up an event any time, any place. One of the first things you can do is set up a viewing party to watch Howard Dean's announcement speech on June 23rd. If there isn't a viewing party in your area, please set one up. It is important that we demonstrate to the country that people across the nation are taking part in Howard Dean's official declaration.

The speech is scheduled to be broadcast at 1 pm ET. It will be webcast live and will be available on demand on the Internet by 6 pm ET. Set up a Monday evening party with your friends and neighbors to hear Howard Dean as he lays out his vision for the future of our country. Be sure to get your friends to join you using the online meeting tools-- it's the only way to demonstrate to the country how many people are taking part in the June 23rd celebration.


William Saletan at Slate is dutifully impressed by Howard Dean's appearance in Iowa this weekend. (Click here to view the video from Cspan.) Saletan writes:

Dean is far and away the most interesting player in the race. Not since Clinton have Democrats seen a talent like this. Here's Dean on the federal budget:

When Ronald Reagan came into office, he cut taxes, we had big deficits, and we lost 2 million jobs. When Bill Clinton came into office, he raised taxes without a single Republican vote; we balanced the budget; we gained 6 and a half million jobs. George Bush has already lost 2 and a half million. I want a balanced budget because that's how you get jobs in this country is to balance the books. No Republican president has balanced the budget in 34 years. …You had better elect a Democrat, because the Republicans cannot handle money. … We're the party of responsibility, and they're not.

When you hear Dean talk like this, you wonder why no one else can make the party's case so simply. If more Democrats spoke this way, maybe they'd control a branch of government.

If more Democrats spoke this way, we'd probably control all three.


Over 33,000 people have now signed up through meetup.com to organize locally for Governor Dean. They have raised nearly one third of a million dollars through the Meetup Challenge, a challenge from a New York Meetuper to raise $1,000,000 for Dean through Meetups (click here to add your contribution). Many of those same Meetup members are now organizing events to celebrate Howard Dean's official declaration of his candidacy on June 23rd. Visit http://www.deanforamerica.com/june23 and type in your zip code to see if an event has been scheduled in your area. As the June FEC filing deadline approaches in less than three weeks, these Declaration Celebration events and the Meetup challenge become critical to Dean's continued momentum.


The New Yorker's Ben McGrath takes in two fundraisers-- one with Howard Dean, the other with someone else-- and reveals some reasons why people are supporting Governor Dean:

[Cynthia] Williams is not, to be precise, a young professional; she said that she had been unemployed since September 11th, and, before she discovered Dean (watching c-span over the winter), she was, she said, “on the verge of being evicted. I didn’t know what would happen to my son.” Now that she’s a Dean supporter, things are looking up. “When I say he saved my life, I’m not overstating,” she said. “Last Friday, I went to the dinner in Atlantic City, and I had to borrow the money to even get down there. But once I got there I had a hotel room waiting for me, meals, everything. We Dean supporters look out for one another, you know? They say they like my enthusiasm.”
At another candidate's fundraiser, McGrath takes a one-person poll:

A Columbia student named Meredith... had been at Downtown Dean, too. (She had changed clothes between stops.) As the Late Night party began to thin out, after midnight, she looked around... and said that she’d been more impressed by Dean. “I found him very compelling,” she said. “Not necessarily arousing, but compelling. And the crowd there was more diverse.”


Tom Curry over at MSNBC reports on Howard Dean's appearance at Governor Tom Vilsack's picnic in Iowa this weekend:

Dean compared Bush to President Nixon during the Watergate crisis. “What did the president know and when did he know it?” Dean asked, in a reprise of the famous question posed about Nixon in 1974.

“The country is facing a serious crisis,” Dean told the crowd. “Our people are dying in Iraq at the rate of nine a week and the American people may not have had the full information about why we went there.”

"The president’s credibility is at stake,” Dean told reporters earlier.


Adding to the Dean Internet presence is a new site, Progressive Christians for Dean. From their homepage:

Progressive Christians for Dean is a group of thoughtful and committed progressive Christians focused on electing Howard Dean President of the United States and getting his message to the larger community of faith. Gov. Dean has a record of commitment to social justice and fiscal responsibility, and he is dedicated to reviving the progressive voice in public policy and ensuring that no person is left behind. We encourage all progressive Christians to support Gov. Dean in his campaign.



Following up on the KCCI poll released Thursday, in which Howard Dean surged into a second-place tie in Iowa, the latest Zogby poll of New Hampshire voters confirms that Howard Dean is the only candidate advancing in the key states of Iowa and New Hampshire.

According to the Zogby poll of New Hampshire voters, Howard Dean has advanced 9 points in New Hampshire since February. Dean is tied for the lead in the Granite State with John Kerry, who has lost some traction in the state since the spring. Zogby writes:

In February New Hampshire polling by Zogby International, Kerry enjoyed a 2-1 lead over Dean, 26% - 13%, with Gephardt at 11% and Lieberman at 9% .

The results of the current poll, conducted June 4-7, show Governor Howard Dean at 22%, in a statistical tie with John Kerry (25%). Lieberman was a "distant third" at 10%, while Gephardt fell to 7%. The margin of error for the poll is +/- 4.1%.

John Zogby summed up the poll by writing: The real story here is Dean's rise.

Indeed, comparing the latest polls, while Gephardt rose in Iowa, he fell in NH. Kerry lost one percentage point in New Hampshire and fell six points in Iowa. Only Dean advanced in both states.

Also in the New Hampshire poll, 27% of voters were still undecided. 36% of voters had yet to become familiar with Governor Dean, while only 12% of respondents were unfamiliar with John Kerry, suggesting that Dean has the stronger chance of winning over those who are still looking for a candidate to support.


We are in Mt. Pleasant, Iowa for Gov. Tom Vilsack's and Lt. Gov. Sally Pederson's annual family picnic. The picnic was held at the Old Threshers Grounds. There were more John Deere tractors than you've ever seen in your life! Around 800 people were there. The Dean people came from all over: Chicago, Minneapolis, and Missouri. They did a great job greeting the Gov. and they were on there feet waving signs when the Gov. spoke. Gov. Dean made their drive worthwhile by giving a great speech! You can feel the enthusiasm for the Gov. building here it Iowa. Thankfully, the Gov. did not sing - like some of the other candidates did. I'm not sure his speech would have gone over as well if he did!

You can't have a picnic without food and the Vilsacks and the Pedersons put on a great spread: pork burgers (Never had one before - they're great), cole slaw, potato chips, lemonade, chocolate chip cookies and ice cream. This is one day that we won't be going without food.

Make sure to watch Road to the White House tonight on C-SPAN. They will be rebroadcasting the speech.

Right now we're in the airport waiting to catch a flight (unfortunately, it's a little plane) to Minnesota. It will be our second state in just one day!


The AP reports on the latest Zogby poll of likely New Hampshire primary voters:

Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts and former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean lead the field among Democratic presidential candidates in New Hampshire, according to the latest poll of likely voters in the state.

Kerry was at 25 percent while Dean was at 22 percent in the Zogby poll released Sunday.

The poll of 600 likely voters taken June 4-7 has an error margin of plus or minus 4 percentage points. That means Kerry and Dean are statistically tied for the lead.

According to the AP report, "About one-third of those surveyed said they are not familiar with Dean, while one in 10 said that about Kerry." These numbers suggest that Dean is more likely to gain additional support in New Hampshire.



Dave Johnson over at Seeing the Forest has been getting some good air time with his defense of what it means to be from the Democratic wing of the Democratic Party. He writes:

Being in the Democratic wing is about being an opposition party and standing up for the people of the country and the interests of the nation instead of cowering before the Bush intimidation machine, allowing the right to persue their radical agenda to take the country back to the 19th century. That's what it's about, not about being a leftie. And it's about getting it. Checking in with weblogs is getting it. Reading BuzzFlash is getting it. Understanding what the grassroots are talking about is getting it. THAT is why Governor Howard Dean is doing so well with the grassroots, and THAT is why Dean can use the phrase "from the Democratic wing of the Democratic Party.



Or at least this humble little weblog. Searles writes in Digging Dean:

In the Official Howard Dean Weblog, we may have (far as I know, which admittedly is not... enough) a model political campaign blog.

What makes a good poliblog? Human beings speaking in human voices (like Matthew Gross, who signed the latest several posts). Making the ends the means. Links galore. Cross-crediting where due. Permalinks. RSS. Involvement. All that stuff is good to see, regardless of the policies involved.

Are any other candidates even close?

Well, what can we say? It put a smile on our face, even if the old first name was misspelled yet again (the bane of my existence-- one lonesome "t," just spread the word). A very good end to a very good week for the Howard Dean campaign.


As the number of unemployed Americans increased to a 9-year high, the question today is, how will the Bush Administration explain the effect of its disastrous economic policies on the millions of unemployed Americans who are not enjoying the benefits of a supposed "recovery?"

"The problem is not that President Bush isn't paying enough attention to the economy, the problem is that his economic policies are leaving hard-working American families behind," said Governor Howard Dean today. "Our economy cannot withstand one more misguided tax cut cloaked in the guise of economic stimulus. This president has broken the bank, and it's time we cut up his credit card."

Howard Dean is running for President to restore fiscal discipline to the federal government. As Governor of Vermont, Dean balanced the state budget every year while providing health care to virtually all of Vermont's children and creating thousands of new jobs.


In regards to a petition that is circulating online: it should be stated clearly that Governor Dean does not believe pressure should be placed on anyone to withdraw from the race. Governor Dean is standing up for the democratic ideals of our nation, and those ideals mean that the voters should decide-- at the polls.

In order for Howard Dean to win the White House in 2004, we must bring together all of the constituencies and viewpoints that make up the Democratic party. Efforts to encourage a particular candidate to drop out-- no matter how well-intentioned-- will only alienate those whom we need to include in the fight against George W. Bush.

Howard Dean welcomes the healthy debate that a broad Democratic field brings to the nominating process. It's a chance for the Democratic party to consider where it is going, and where it has been. We will win this race based on the power of our ideas and the rightness of our actions. And we will win this race by bringing the entire Democratic party together.


TomPaine.com calls Howard Dean a "Man We Won't Misunderestimate":

Remember when we had competent presidents? Clinton press conferences were like college seminars with a star professor. He could speak broadly and authoratively for hours -- completely off the cuff. We were reminded of him when we read the Grist Magazine Q&A with Howard Dean. The lengthy, free-ranging conversation about environmental policy occurred while Dean was walking through the airport, going through the security checkpoints, not sitting at a desk with a binder of briefing sheets. Unlike Clinton, though, and today’s DLC-fed presidential contenders, The Doctor seems genuinely committed to alternative energy, pledging to ramp up renewables to a hearty 15% by 2010.


The Washington Posts reports:

WASHINGTON - The nation's unemployment rate climbed to 6.1 percent in May, the highest level in nine years, as businesses cut 17,000 jobs in a weak economy struggling toward recovery.

The rate was up one-tenth of a percentage point from April, peaking at a level not seen since the country was emerging from the last recession, the Labor Department reported Friday.



In the latest KCCI poll of likely Iowa voters, Howard Dean has made tremendous gains while most other candidates are losing ground. The poll results for the top 5 candidates now, as compared to March:

             JUNE  MARCH   NET CHANGE
Gephardt     27    22    plus 5
Kerry           14    20    minus 6
Dean           11     6      plus 5
Lieberman   10    16     minus 6
Edwards      4     8      minus 4

The poll reveals that only two of the top five candidates-- Howard Dean and Dick Gephardt-- are gaining support in the race to win Iowa. Howard Dean has leapt from 5th place to 3rd. The direction of John Kerry's momentum suggests he risks falling back into the pack, and Senators Lieberman and Edwards have also lost traction.


Ron Fournier files his story with the Associated Press on yesterday's Meetup:

"Time to break out the checkbooks!" Morrill shouted as a Dean campaign worker passed out donation forms.

The purpose is to build a deep, cheap grass-roots political organization and take the extra step to victory that eluded Gary Hart, Pat Buchanan, John McCain and other insurgent candidacies.


On June 23rd, Governor Dean will formally declare his candidacy and lay out his vision for America in a major address from Burlington, Vermont.

In addition to the rally in Burlington, the Dean for America campaign is organizing Declaration Celebrations in five cities.

You can also organize your own local Declaration Celebration—-we can show the country the strength of support for Governor Dean by holding hundreds of parties in towns and cities across America.

How can you organize a Declaration Celebration? By using the ultra-secret, pretty-darned-cool tools that our web team has been working on around the clock. Click here for more info.


Legend has it that CNN will report on yesterday's Meetup on today's edition of Inside Politics, broadcast at 4 pm EDT.


Right now we're in our nation's capital. We got here this morning after spending the last two days in New York. We had two great days in New York City. We met with activists who we are trying to get on board and we had several fundraising receptions for solid Dean supporters. One of the receptions was hosted by Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward. As a Vermonter who doesn't get to see movie stars everyday it was very exciting to see them in person. (I even had a conversation about oatmeal raisin cookies with a extremely famous composer!) The meetings were great, but the weather wasn't and being the frugal campaign that we are we don't do taxis! So, we walked, took a bus, and took the subway every where we went. Needless to say we were soaked by the end of the day, but we are now experts at public transportation!

In addition to the typical campaign meetings we had to do, Gov. Dean gave the commencement address at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York. The Gov. graduated from Albert Einstein, so he had a great time seeing some of his former classmates and professors.

This morning we flew from New York to Washington, DC. (The flight was not without incident. We were dropped off at the wrong terminal and the shuttle bus to the right terminal never came. It was too far to walk, so we had to break our no taxi rule and jump in a cab to get to the terminal just in time to board the plane!)

Thankfully, we made it to Washington!


Dean supporters across the country did a good job of getting local reporters to their Meetups last night. Two examples:

Santa Fe New Mexican

San Mateo County Times


TVSpy.com has a short online interview with Howard Dean, in which the Governor discusses HowardDean TV:

TVSPY: Governor, what exactly is Howard Dean TV?

DEAN: Howard Dean TV is essentially a way of getting our message out unfiltered over the Internet. It's been terrific. It's really been a great success. It allows people to go onto the Net, where they are able to see the direct message without being snipped into little sound bites and without being filtered by Rupert Murdoch and "fair and balanced coverage".



32,044 people have now signed up for the Dean 2004 Meetups. This means that in the past 48 hours ALONE, 3,149 new people signed up. To put that in some perspective, less than 3,000 people are signed up to Meetup for Kerry, Edwards, Gephardt, Lieberman, and George W. Bush combined.


We just got back from the Burlington Meetup an hour ago. Because it is, even in Vermont, warm enough to sit outside, the Burlington staff and dozens of supporters sat together on the patio, ate french fries, watched the video on Dean TV, and listened to each other. Vermont Coordinator Sam Osborne, Joe Trippi, and Michael Silberman spoke, and one woman who claimed to be unable to speak eloquently in crowds proved herself completely wrong. One of the best parts of this entire process is seeing people who have never previously been political getting so actively involved. A local volunteer, Jim Brayton, took pictures which you can see here. Then I came back to the office to read reports from Meetupers from around the country, like Clay from Georgia:

"This meetup was decidedly different than the others. People were much more ready to take action. They were energized. They were BEGGING for action. I don't know what y'all did in Vermont, but whatever it did worked here in the south. People here want their country back. And I'll have a team together that will not only carry Dekalb County, but quite possibly the State of Georgia."

or Rachel from Chicago:

"Chicago meetup was FANTASTIC. This thing is really rolling!"

or a supporter from Cincinnati:

"The Cincinnati meetup was attended by about 30 people - no small feat considering that we had to scramble for a new location after the first location cancelled (they were worried that we would take up too much space!) About 3/4's of the people were new!

We organized ourselves, raised money and had a great time.I agree - this is winnable!"

There is a great CBS News article today on Dean and the extraordinary Meetup grassroots movement. "The largest component spreading the word – both in money and organization – are the Meetup folks," says Joe Trippi, Dean's campaign manager. "Meetup has been incredible. Just incredible."


For those of you who missed it, last night's interview with Howard Dean on the Charlie Rose show is now available in Quicktime by clicking here.


One of the best parts of the unprecedented grassroots movement for Dean is the independent organizing that has grown out of Meetup. In Atlanta, New York, Nashville, California, Minneapolis, Albany, Houston and dozens of other cities, Meetupers and others have been organizing their own events--outreach events where people pass out flyers and sign people up for Dean, and social events, like barbeques and pizza parties, where Dean supporters come together to meet each other, plan and raise money. In upstate New York, Meetupers passed out flyers at the local tulip festival; in Chicago, volunteers are signing people up at this weekend's book festivals; in Durham, supporters get together for trivia night.

As of yesterday, supporters can now arrange those outreach events and social events on the Dean for America website. These are the “really cool organizing tools” that Joe Trippi mentioned in his blogpost last night (no, Joe, I was not at the Pub & Brewery--I was working really, really hard on that new project we're always talking about). Go to http://action.deanforamerica.com/meet to see if anyone in your area has scheduled an event (just enter your zip code), and, if you have already planned a local event, try posting your event on our website, and inviting friends to join you. Or you could just post your Meetup tonight as an event. Meetup hosts in a handful of towns have already started doing just that. (Have I mentioned that tonight is Dean Meetup night, and nearly 31,500 people have signed up across the country?)

These are new capabilities, and will take time for people to get used to using them, and there will doubtless be several kinks that need to be worked out, so be patient with us as we all figure out the best way to use them. You should know, though, that we would never have tried to provide this new service if it weren't for the incredible organizing and energy that is out there already. We'll put a link to the tools on our website tomorrow, and provide more information, but if you want a sneak preview and to try scheduling your own events, you can be among the first!


Yep, it's Wednesday (already?), which means it's not only National Meetup for Dean day-- it's also time for Daily Kos' Weekly Cattle Call. Kos (rightfully) notes the power of blogs in the coming election:

The passion we demonstrate for politics is making waves. The Dean people are pioneers in this regard, but by next cycle all campaigns will be "working" the blogs. By becoming engaged in the political process, we will help shape it.

Indeed, do any of you think Dean would be where he is without the power of the weblog? The other candidates, thanks to their techno-ignorance, have ceeded this entire territory to Dean. You better believe no one will make that mistake in future campaigns.

It's a whole new world, and I think it's cool that we are all playing a role. And like it or not, these weekly rankings are part of the process.


Adding to the Howard Dean presence online is the website with the cool title DeanRocks. From the site:

Deanrocks.com was started in May 2003 by a 24 year old single mother in Southern Vermont. DeanRocks.com seeks to inspire the 25 million Americans aged 18-30 who are not currently voting to support Vermont's former Governor, Howard Dean, in his bid for the Democratic Nomination for President. Our website will utilize the unique combination of art, music, politics and the internet to inspire our generation to unite and TAKE BACK AMERICA from the Bush Regime!


Howard Dean will be on the Diane Rehm show on NPR at 10:30 am ET today-- fifteen minutes from now. Check the schedule of the NPR station in your area for broadcast times near you.

Also, many PBS stations will be rebroadcasting last night's interview with Governor Dean on the Charlie Rose Show. Check your local listings to catch it today.