Demo Anti-Deanr’s are out in full force

Wow – where do I start? Howard Dean is facing a major backlash within his own party. It would seem that even though he’s gotten the endorsement of “Mr. Establishment” himself, Al Gore, he’s still considered an outsider with the Dem candidates, and a few other lefty notables who you’ll read about in a bit. The inconsistencies in Dean’s statements are just now starting to get some play in the media. Notice how it seems that everytime Wes Clark or John Kerry flub up in their statements, it’s national news for days and weeks and the media really takes them to task? Dean has been Mr. Teflon in this area – but it seems times are a changin’. Let’s take a look at a piece from today’s WashPost:

Howard Dean’s penchant for flippant and sometimes false statements is generating increased criticism from his Democratic presidential rivals and raising new questions about his ability to emerge as a nominee who can withstand intense, sustained scrutiny and defeat President Bush.

Dean, for instance, recently spoke of a “most interesting theory” that Saudi Arabia had “warned” Bush about the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. Although Dean said he does not believe Bush was tipped off about the assaults that killed nearly 3,000, he has made no apologies for raising the rumor.

“How is what I did different from what Dick Cheney or George Bush . . . did during the time of the buildup of the invasion of Iraq?” the former Vermont governor said Tuesday night aboard his campaign plane. “There were all these theories that they mentioned. Many of them turned out not to be true. The difference is that I acknowledged that I did not believe the theory I was putting out.”

Bush this week called the theory an “absurd insinuation.”

Dean’s remarks, his critics say, are in keeping with his history of making statements that are mean-spirited or misleading. He has distorted his past support for raising the retirement age for Social Security and slowing Medicare’s growth. He has falsely said he was the only Democratic presidential candidate talking about race before white audiences. And he made allegations — some during his years as governor — that turned out to be untrue.

After saying at his last gubernatorial news conference that he was sealing his official records to avoid political embarrassment, Dean now says he was joking and is not sure what is in the files.*snip*

MSNBC’s Political Affair’s Writer did this hit piece on Dean as well:

Democratic presidential contender Howard Dean has taken contrasting and sometimes conflicting stances on issues ranging from the war in Iraq to campaign finance to disposal of nuclear waste at the Yucca Mountain site in Nevada.

While some of his Democratic rivals have fired intermittent criticism at Dean for shifting his stands, none of them has yet wrapped all the issues into a comprehensive attack that questions Dean’s credibility.

In an interview last week about his foreign policy ideas, Dean said “it’s all about nuance” and indeed some of Dean’s shifts have been a matter of nuance.

But others, such as his switch on whether he’d abide by campaign spending limits, have been outright reversals of his previous commitments.*snip*

Not only is the media starting to question Howard Dean’s credibility (thank goodness!) but self-professed Bush hater Jonathan Chait doesn’t seem to be too high on Dean. He now calls himself a Deanophobe and has the blog to prove it:

It’s not entirely clear to me why I’ve taken such an intense dislike to Howard Dean. Yes, I find him arrogant and frequently dishonest. Yes, I’m certain his nomination would lead to a political disaster of historic, and possibly biblical, proportions. And, yes, I’m continuously dumbfounded that a number of highly intelligent people I know have convinced themselves that his nomination is a good thing, or at least that it’s not an unambiguously bad thing. But somehow the whole of my loathing for Dean is greater than the sum of its parts. So I’ve decided to start a blog on TNR’s website to indulge that loathing.*snip*

To all my conservative pals out there: do your best to keep these inconsistencies out there in the public eye. With any luck, his fellow Dems running against him and other Dems like John Chait will weaken his credibility to the point that once he wins the nomination, he’ll be too busy defending himself from his flip flops to handle anything else.