Excerpts from:
"Howard Dean is No George McGovern. He Might be Bill Clinton"

Jonathan Rauch

National Journal

December 6, 2003, pp. 3640-41



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Dean favored an alternative war resolution (sponsored by Sens. Joseph Biden, D-Del., and Richard Lugar, R-Ind.) that differed little from the one that passed. True, Biden-Lugar called on Bush to seek a United Natgions Security Council resolution authorizing the war, but it did not require Bush to obtain such a resolution, if the Security Council balked. In other words, Dean favored a congressional resolution authorizing exactly the course that Bush took. [empahsis supplied]

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In hindsight, Dean's position was not coherent, but neither was it pacifist or hard-left.  . . . He took care not to renounce unilateralism. "I am not among those who say that America should never use its armed forces unilaterally," he said in his February speech -- one of several such statements.

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As evidence that progressive Democrats will forgive Dean for all kinds of impurities, I offer the fact that they are already doing so. On June 17 . . . Dean said that the doctrine of "pre-emptive war" was wrong and dangerous; he promised to "tear up the Bush doctrine" on his first day in office. On June 25 . . . he instead criticized only the "misuse" of the doctrine . . .. The Left didn't mind.

On September 4, Dean said America's troops in Iraq "need to come home." The Left didn't mind five days later when, asked if he would favor a troop pullout, Dean said, "We can't do that . . . Al Qaeda may move in." Nor do progressives seem to mind that Dean calls for universal health insurance while proposing no such thing. Nor, indeed, do they mind his support for a Senate resolution that would have authorized Bush's war on Iraq.

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