If Governor Dean loses the South in 2004, he'd have to win 70 percent of the remaining Electoral College votes to win the presidency.
Former White House Chief of Staff Leon Panetta's carefully worded remarks (found here)" ..reflect widening fears among Democratic leaders here and elsewhere in the party — especially in the South — who say that Mr. Dean is too liberal, not just in his opposition to using military force to topple Saddam Hussein but in his call for repealing all of the Bush tax cuts, imposing regulations on businesses, erecting new trade-protection rules and favoring civil unions for same-sex "marriages."
**My Note: If a "Stop-Dean" movement within the Democratic party is indeed activated,
I think the Democratic Party will lose great influence with the newly-motivated crop of
idealistic and exuberant movers and shakers at the grassroots level. A lose-lose situation for all Democrats. You cannot stop the tide from rushing in. Howard Dean is the face of the Democrats' active survival, in my opinion.**
South Carolina Presidential Primary Plans Off to Slow and Painful Start
The DNC has served notice it will not step in to finance the South Carolina primary despite the embarrassment and humiliation a canceled contest would cause. The DNC wants to avoid the precedent of bailing out one state party, knowing that if it does, "others would come calling".
“It would be a disaster for the state Democratic Party if they were forced to cancel the primary. If the national party allows this to happen, you would know what it thinks of the South Carolina Democratic Party.”
Robert Jeffrey, Wofford College political scientist
Why Governor Dean Will be Helped By
a Southerner for his Running Mate (a John Edwards..a Wesley Clark):
"..Opposition to gay marriage is strongest among older Americans, the most reliable group of voters. There is also more opposition among adults over 30 who do not have a college degree than those that do, and among men, groups that have been migrating to the Republican Party in the South for decades. Sixty-seven percent of Southerners oppose gay marriage, according to the Pew poll, compared to 50 percent of Easterners."
"..Dean probably has the most to lose by [the issue's] rising profile since he is the only candidate who has signed legislation allowing gay couples to legally unite."
How Governor Dean Can Appeal to Southern Voters Himself:
"..Democrats slowed the Republican advance among white Southerners primarily through the successful presidential campaigns of Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton. But George W. Bush's sweep of the region in 2000 showed it will take more than a white Southern Democrat such as Tennessean Al Gore on the ticket to reverse the Republican tide.
Take the Confederate flag out of candidate Dean's formulation, and the former governor of Vermont is saying, correctly, that Democrats can broaden their appeal and expand their base in the South. To do so, they need to focus on such issues as fiscal integrity, respect for law and order, patriotism, national defense and personal responsibility..."