Much has been made of the Dean grassroots movement, both positively and negatively. It's exciting to watch, but is Dean another McGovern who will take the party down in 2004 with angry and idealistic rhetoric, or is he another Reagan who will usher in a new Democratic age? It's difficult to say, but this post from a Dean supporter isn't encouraging on the Reagan front:
I just learned that Dean is pro-death penalty in The Nation. I suppose this is good for those who want Dean to be perceived less as a liberal, but it may be a deal-breaker for me.
The death penalty is wrong, pure and simple. How does Dean adopt the mantle of Wellstone while supporting institutionalized killing? I'd assumed that because Dean was a medical doctor, that, on principle, he would oppose the death penalty. Does anyone else see a contradiction between taking an oath to 'first, do no harm,' and advocating, even in limited instances, belting a human being to a table and injecting them with lethal chemicals?
Aside from pointing out that Kerry is against the death penalty (except for terrorists), doesn't this suggest that the Dean supporters might not be so pragmatic after all? If people hear that 'it's my way or the highway,' Americans will simply shrug in 2004 and say 'It's Bush's way.'