This guy’s missing from Obama’s Administration

In all the excitement of the election season, there is one person noticeably absent from this entire scene, and I’m writing about him because he singlehandedly redefined who was “electable” and it seems shameful that he is not going to be around to partake in the fruits of his labor.  And I know some of you will say I’m hating on Obama…again; but for the sake of this post, hold your disdain until you’ve read the post.

I’m talking about DNC Chair Howard Dean.

Y’all want to credit Obama with crafting the “50-state strategy”, but I’m here to correct you.  Obama executed the strategy, but it was designed, developed and implemented by Governor Howard Dean.  And he crafted it before he became DNC Chair.  Prior to Dean’s election as the Chairman, the DNC continued to operate on a strategy that did nothing but give more of the Congressional majority to the Republicans.  They always ran on the principles being touted by the conservative wing of the Democratic Party – better known as Democratic Leadership Council Democrats, and Blue Dog Democrats – a group of Democrats who are only Democrats because they couldn’t get elected from their respective districts if they were registered Republicans.

Anywhoo, these Democrats, always touted the following strategies:

  1. Find a “safe” candidate that was “electable”.  To me, an “electable” candidate was code word for “not liberal or progressive; doesn’t support civil rights and get gay people the hell away from them”  Also meant they would support sending Mexicans back across that border as long as that support wouldn’t cost them in the election.
  2. Campaign only in coastal states and urban areas – because it’s a waste of time to contend in rural areas.  This means that the areas where Obama won or made it close, were areas not historically contended for before this year’s election.  Brotha in Montana?  GTHOH with that one.
  3. The African-American vote is a reliable base.  This, unfortunately, is true, because the Democrats promote themselves as the “Big Tent” party; but the bigotry occasionally comes out the closet; you can tell by looking at which Democrats cross party lines on legislation designed to screw over their own constituency.
  4. Engage in circular firing squads to neutralize any Democratic candidate too liberal or progressive, and is a threat to shake up our comfortable establishment.

Number 4 happened to derail Dean’s chances at the Democratic Nomination back in 2004.  Anyone watching that campaign knew John Kerry from a hole in their floors, but after Iowa, suddenly, he’s the Front Runner? That’s because the DNC leadership decided that John Kerry was “electable” but Howard Dean was a crazy man that needed to be bum-rushed off the stage and with a quickness before anyone else caught on to him.I know some of you want to blame that “scream” on Dean’s losing the primary, but the reality is, the establishment was afraid of Howard Dean.  I mean, this man was the first political candidate to use the Internet to fundraise.  By the time of the first primary, Dean managed to raise $40 million dollars in Internet donations, and none of it from Corporations, either.  The DC establishment took one look at that shyt and said “This MoFo gots to go” and later on, one by one, the networks admitted they were ordered to replay that clip of “Dean’s Scream” with more emphasis than normal and at a louder pitch to paint him as maniacal.

So, Dean drops out, but none of us in the grassroots forgot how he blew onto the scene.  We didn’t want to lose what he brought to the table in terms of grassroots activism and engaging regular, everyday people in the political mix.  For once, the blogsphere began a campaign to promote Dean for the vacated DNC Chairman position being exited by the worthless Terry McAuliffe, who oversaw the Democrats losing both Houses of Congress back in 1994 and couldn’t right the ship, even though he was given major time without someone calling for his head.

Those of us who supported Dean for the nomination of POTUS back in 2004, we watched how he crafted his campaign.  He began to campaign in places like Montana and Wyoming, as well as, say, Oakland/San Francisco or Chicago and New York.  When asked why he was campaigning in rural areas like Wyoming; he would respond that it was a candidate’s obligation to contend for every vote in every state in the Union.  Dean pointed out to anyone listening that contending in some states and conceding middle America to the Republicans would guarantee that the Democrats would not take back Congress or the White House until this “50-state strategy” was implemented and followed.  While the establishment wanted to cling to the same old, outdated, ineffective strategies and hope for different results, Dean, once he won the Chairmanship, began to chart the course that led to Barack Obama’s victory in November 2008.

Howard Dean re-defined what it meant to be “electable”.  An “electable” candidate was someone who was sincere about his position, his beliefs; did not wait to see which way the wind blew before taking a position on an issue.  An electable candidate went to the people and presented himself as the person willing to serve them and represent their interests – whether they were in Martha’s Vineyard or Cletus’ Dustbowl; everyone had their interests and deserved to have the candidate listen to them and engage them in discussion and debate.

As a result of Governor Dean’s vision, we saw Obama campaigning everywhere a plane flew.  We saw him in Montana and Wyoming.  We saw him in urban areas.  We saw Obama use the Internet to raise close to a billion dollars in his quest for the White House.  So by and large, it would appear that Governor Dean’s strategy worked because it was executed properly by politicos who were tired of trying the same old thing and hoping for different outcomes.  That’s called insanity, and some wiser heads in the Democratic Party prevailed by stopping it.

Yet, Howard Dean is no where to be found in this celebration; this historical event, and it was the hard work of executing strategies that he developed, that are largely responsible.  I’d like to know why this man isn’t going to be Surgeon General or over Health and Human Services?  What reason does Obama’s camp have for not considering him for any position in the Administration, but you can reward your opponents like Hillary Clinton with a Secretary of State post?  Or keep a bloodthirsty SOB like Robert Gates running your Defense Department?

I am a proud African-American woman, and yeah, I like it when my POCs do well, but when I see what is obviously a disrespecting of the man whose strategies handed you the White House, and is as deserving of a post in the Administration just like the polarizing Hillary Clinton or the unqualified Arne Duncan over at Education, I am equally willing to ask the question, “Why is Howard Dean Being Shut Out of Obama’s Administration?”

For all I know, he might not want to be part of the Administration; however, from the sources I read, he was at least wanting an invitation…somewhere. Maybe even Education Secretary – we all know he’s more competent than the guy Obama chose for the job. Or how about EPA? HHS? Surgeon General?

Has he even got a phone call from the PE, at least to thank him for that 50-state strategy?  Has Obama even met with him at all, apart from the debriefing process after the election?  If someone has a source, could you post it in the comments with a link?

If none of the above, in terms of even giving Howard Dean a courtesy call or consideration for a Cabinet position after all this, has occured, I have to call this what it appears to be; ROYAL DISRESPECT OF A KEY PLAYER WHO GOT OBAMA TO THIS DANCE.  PERIOD.  CASE CLOSED.

So much for “electability” – it gets dirtied when the people who got you there get shut the hell out.

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