Howard Fineman questions whether Dean is ready for the Big House over Dean’s handling of the sealed gubernatorial reocrds issue.
I can’t say I disagree with Fineman (on the mishandline of the issue), though I don’t think it’s so serious as to call Dean’s fitness for office into question.
We’ve had a couple situations over the past few months where tiny issues (the confederate flag flap, the public financing switch, now the records issue) where the campaign has appeared surprised by the opposition’s attacks on minor issues. Dean’s propensity for ad-libbing is refreshing — but Fineman’s right in saying that the “I sealed the records to protect AIDS patients” line was inexcusable. That is no way to end this discussion.
I think I’m going to get me a copy of War Room (the documentary about Clinton’s ’92 run) and watch it. A friend of a friend was involved in Clinton’s war room in Little Rock, and tells some amazing stories about the rapid response team they set up.
With a little tweaking to the Dean rapid response effort, I think we’ll be in fine shape. We’ve seen what happens when the team focuses its energies on thinking ahead; the entire success of the campaign to date has been evidence of their ability to out-strategize everyone else. So far that strategizing hasn’t been as evident on the rapid response side. Here’s hoping it gets fixed.