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LETTERS TO THE TIMES

Dean's Campaign Should Be the Democrats' Reality Check

August 14, 2003

"The Anti-Bush," by Kevin Phillips (Opinion, Aug. 10), provides an excellent summary of effective Democrat campaign arguments against President Bush. However, he omits one vital element: National security, touted as the president's strength, requires economic security, which has been devastated by the administration's policies and biases. Those two fundamental dots must be connected securely in any successful Democrat strategy to win the White House in 2004.

Bonnie M. Simrell

Westcliffe, Colo.

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Phillips' view of Howard Dean is shortsighted at best. He does not seem to realize that Dean's growing support is not just due to the mounting number of people who are disgusted with the way Bush is slowly destroying our country. Dean is widely supported because he has vision and a plan to take our country back from the controlling interests of corporate America. Thus, he should not be seen as the "anti-Bush" candidate. Rather, Dean should be seen as the "pro-America" candidate.

Comparing Dean to the hapless Ross Perot is an insult. Dean has specific ideas and plans. Perot was a one-line wonder, at best. Comparing Dean to Perot is like comparing Bush to a Rhodes scholar.

John Darling

Ventura

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Dean is right on target by trying to establish himself as the "anti-Bush." Those candidates who endorse Bush's policies on foreign policy, taxation and the environment may find favor with "moderate" voters in a general election but they will have a difficult time carving a strong path to the presidency on the primary trail. Dean has my support thus far.

Robert Matano

Laguna Niguel

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Re Ronald Brownstein's "He May Not Be Tops With Party Brass, but Dean's the One to Watch," Aug. 11: For almost three years I have been bewildered by the wimpish posturing of most Democratic politicians. Now that potential candidates like Dean are on the scene speaking out against the degradation that has occurred since Bush took office, I have hope.

I am not alone, obviously. Grass-roots support is building; people are switching to parties like the Greens because they want to be truly represented and want concerns about the environment, the economy, education, equal rights and world diplomacy addressed.

I suggest that the Democratic Party do a reality check, because it seems to be clueless regarding what people like me truly want.

Joan Forman

Redondo Beach

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