Friday, October 22, 2004

Dean uses his energy for Kerry

By Reid Forgrave
Enquirer staff writer

Election 2004 page
OXFORD - It was a flashback to a year ago, with the same vitriolic criticisms against President Bush's policies in Iraq and at home and the same energy that united the Democratic party against Bush.

Except this time, former Democratic presidential hopeful Howard Dean wasn't touting himself.

The energetic Dean attended a campaign rally Thursday for Greg Harris, the Democratic nominee in Ohio's First Congressional District. Then he drove to Miami University to rev up youthful Democrats to vote for Sen. John Kerry and to speak about what he called Bush's failures.

, For much of his 15-minute speech at Harris' rally, Dean railed against Republicans, specifically Bush, and Ohio Congressman Steve Chabot, as well as Ohio Secretary of State Ken Blackwell. But Dean used his most venomous words against Bush's Iraq policy.

"We need a president who understands the real threats that face our country - al-Qaida, South Korea, Iran. Not some two-bit dictator that (Bush) trumped up a lot of stuff about that's not true," Dean said, echoing Kerry's platform.

Dean is still angry at the Republican establishment, and he used his history as a fiscally conservative Vermont governor to cry foul at Bush's economic policies, especially "borrow-and-spend" government, and outsourcing American jobs. He also railed against the country's skyrocketing deficit under Bush - a shortfall Dean blames on Bush's tax cuts.

"He calls John Kerry a liberal," Dean told more than 100 Democrats in Bond Hill before heading to Oxford to dine with 20 College Democrats at Kona Bistro. "Now I don't know if he's a liberal or not, but I can tell you that George Bush has been awfully liberal with my tax dollars."

At the Bond Hill rally, Harris sounded similar populist themes.

"Howard Dean's movement didn't begin and end with just a presidential bid; it's just beginning," Harris said.


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