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RUSH: Up next is Howard Dean. ‘Democratic Party Chairman Howard Dean has been meeting with world leaders to repair ‘the extraordinary damage’ that the Bush administration has done to America’s image and to prepare the way for a new Democratic president. ‘I am trying to build relationships with other governments in preparation for a Democratic takeover,’ Dean told me.’ This is from Roger Simon in The Politico. Dean: “I want to make clear that there is an opposition in America and that we are ready to take power and that when we do, we are going to have much better relationships with them.’ So Dean’s out there doing what John Kerry said he was going to do and denied he was doing. Remember John Kerry saying, “World leaders have told me that they want me to be elected president. I served in Vietnam”? Dean’s out there doing much the same thing.

I thought the Democrats thought they had power. I thought after the November elections there was this giant mandate, Howard! I thought the November elections gave you guys carte blanche to go out and do what you want to do, like pull us out of Iraq. (Can’t seem to get that done, can you?) You can’t seem to get anything in a piece of legislation that would forestall the president from going into Iran. Leadership is tough. I thought you guys had all the power. I thought you were going to get rid of this Bush guy, make him ineffective and none of his policies were going to continue. Obviously Dean is admitting that they don’t have anything yet. They’re as fractured in the House as they could possibly be. There’s no unity there. For these malcontents, it’s politics as usual. I’m not surprised by it.

I, for one, was not one who bought into this notion that Democrats, of all people, were going to bring along the most ethically pure Congress in the nation’s history. They’re out there saying all this. Pelosi is out there saying all this. We now know what the price for the continuing funding of the war is: $20 billion in pork! Now, all of you people were upset at the Republicans back in November for not doing anything about earmarks and not doing anything about pork and not doing anything about all this extraneous spending, looky here! We just learned the price. We know the Democrats in Congress are a bunch of whores. (They always have been.) We just didn’t know the price. Now we do. It’s $20 billion of pork in order for them to get some faction of the Democrat caucus to go along with the latest budget and Iraq bill.

At any rate, ‘In an hour-long interview at Democratic National Committee headquarters Tuesday, Dean also revealed that he has been quietly meeting with well-known Christian evangelical leaders in order to build new bridges between them and the Democratic Party. ‘We’re never going to convince them on civil rights for gay people or abortion rights,’ Dean said. ‘But we certainly can focus on the things that we both care about a lot: global warming, poverty and the materiality [sic] of our culture.” Does he mean materialism? He also intimated that he could in fact run for president again, which may be what this is all about.

David Broder has a column in the Washington Post today, basically accusing the New York Times of liberal bias. His piece: “The rush to bury the GOP is as hasty as it is premature. Months before the first votes are cast in the campaign of 2008, some in the media…” knows who they are “… are conducting last rites for the Republicans. The rush to bury the GOP is as hasty as it is premature. … The Times, not normally solicitous of Republicans’ feelings, also reported widespread concern among those it interviewed ‘that their party had drifted from the principles of Ronald Reagan, its most popular figure of the past 50 years.’ The fine print of the survey…” it’s a CBS/New York Times poll… “…though, told a somewhat different story. Support for President Bush and his policies remains high among Republicans. His overall job rating among GOP voters is 75 percent, ‘and by overwhelming numbers they approve of his handling of foreign policy, the war in Iraq and the management of the economy.’

“That does not suggest a party wracked by anxiety or guilt, but the Times is taking no chances. Its survey finds that Republicans are less satisfied with their current field of presidential candidates than Democrats are with theirs — and that more Republicans than Democrats have yet to make up their minds about their respective parties’ front-runners. … Given the rich variety of choices available, you might ask, what’s the problem? It’s not as if nobody thinks the Republican nomination is worth seeking.” There are all kinds of Republicans that want the job. He’s really excoriating the New York Times here for getting in a little quick here on predicting the demise of the Republican Party, just as Republicans in the past have made that same mistake about the Democrats.

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