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Dean's Positive Effect on the DNC

Newsweek on Dean and the DNC. This article covers the usual line on Dean's "counter-productive invective." I've blogged before on that, and think the media has WAY over-covered it. Even this article's title "Scream 2" is an easy and kinda cheap shot at Dean. That said, I did find that when the article touched on the positive effect Dean has had on the DNC, I thought that was worth highlighting.

On Dean as a DNC fundraiser: "Early in the last "cycle," in 2001, the Republican National Committee outraised the DNC by a 3-1 margin. So far this year, that ratio has been cut to 2-1. More important is the way it was raised. In the past the party relied on "soft money" from millionaires. But such donations are now illegal. Officials estimate that $12 million of the $14 million the Dean regime has collected so far this year has come from those who gave less than $250. "For people who really look hard at the numbers, he's wowing people," says Elaine Kamarck, a respected DNC member."

Dean has a knack for organization, at least in its insurgent form...This time his theory is to strengthen weak state organizations with national help. He's visited 22 states since taking over this year; his "assessment teams" have investigated many of those same states. Drawing money from the Internet (as opposed to East and West Coast fat cats) and pumping cash into the grass roots (as opposed to waves of TV advertising) "represents a big paradigm shift in the way the Democratic Party does politics," says Kamarck.

Meeting privately with senators last week, Dean promised to watch himself more carefully. "It's important to make the news, not be the news," he told them, according to Sen. Chris Dodd."
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