Monday, November 20, 2006

"Hil's no dump Dean fan"

NY Daily News:
Her camp sez Carville on his own in coup bid


WASHINGTON - James Carville's attempt to topple Howard Dean as chairman of the Democratic National Committee failed after state party officials and even a vocal critic of Dean crushed the coup, officials said.

Insiders from the Clinton camp winced at Carville's untimely remarks last week calling for Dean's ouster in favor of unsuccessful Senate candidate Harold Ford of Tennessee.

"It was not coming from [Sen. Hillary Clinton] and they made a real effort to distance themselves from James' comments," said a source close to the Clintons.

The Clintonistas don't want an undeserved backlash from the activist wing of the party that overwhelmingly supports Dean, especially because some anti-Clinton Democrats have blamed Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-N.Y.) for the attack by Carville, a longtime Clinton insider. Those forces claimed Carville's motive was to topple Dean in favor of a chairman more favorable to Sen. Clinton's bid for President.
Carville's remarks last week came as House Speaker-designate Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) bungled the race for Democratic majority leader. Party operatives acknowledged the Carville and Pelosi sideshows were detracting from their election victories.

"We applaud Chairman Dean for his commitment to ensuring Democratic candidates and state Democratic parties have the resources and tools needed to compete and win, and we remain committed to the hard work of rebuilding our party for the future," said Mark Brewer, president of the Association of State Democratic Chairs.

Brewer's organization endorsed Dean's $30 million effort that helped win six new Democratic governorships and control of 10 more state legislatures. Dean is credited with launching a "50 state program" to rebuild the party at the grass roots, as the GOP so successfully has done for the past 25 years.

"No question Dean can survive because this is a mathematical equation: He has the votes on the DNC because he has been investing in the state parties," said party activist David Sirota.

Carville did not respond to attempts to contact him.

Even Dean-basher Rep. Rahm Emanuel (D-Ill.), chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and an exadviser to former President Bill Clinton, called Dean last week to say Carville was acting alone, and one-time DNC Chairman Don Fowler referred to Carville as an "ill-advised" voice.

"Why do the Washington people think that they have a special prerogative to dictate what the Democratic Party needs?" Fowler wrote in an e-mail to the party faithful. "Why should anyone want to mess with the team that won these remarkable [election] results?"

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