August 16th, 2008
12:46 PM ET
6 years ago

McCain backer takes on Howard Dean over 'white' remark

DNC Howard Dean, pictured here with Sens. Clinton and Obama and former Sen. Edwards, said Friday that people of color and women have historically been more successful in the Democratic Party.
DNC Howard Dean, pictured here with Sens. Clinton and Obama and former Sen. Edwards, said Friday that people of color and women have historically been more successful in the Democratic Party.

(CNN) – Carly Fiorina, a supporter of Sen. John McCain and the chair of the Republican National Committee’s Victory 2008 campaign, took aim at Democratic National Committee Chairman Howard Dean over racially-tinged comments Dean made Friday.

“If you look at folks of color, even women, they’re more successful in the Democratic Party than they are in the white, uh, excuse me, in the Republican Party,” Dean said Friday in an appearance on NPR’s “Tell Me More” program.

Fiorina, a prominent female supporter of McCain, fired back at Dean. “It is disappointing to see Howard Dean trying to use gender and race to divide voters," Fiorina said Friday evening in a statement released by the McCain campaign. "His comments are insulting, inappropriate and have no place in this election.”

McCain, the presumptive Republican nominee, is set to face off in November against Sen. Barack Obama, who is about to become the first African-American to garner the nomination of a major political party. Obama beat out Sen. Hillary Clinton in a long, hard-fought primary race that galvanized many women behind Clinton’s candidacy and many African-Americans behind Obama’s.


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soundoff (579 Responses)
  1. richard - Minneapolis

    Why is it that when the truth is told by Democrats, Republicans always slant it to their opposing benefit? More egregiously, they berate Democrats for trying to clarify that. Dean told the truth: Black Americans are better served – and, therefore, "more successful" – in the Democratic party. Fiorina wants to make that a lie and calls it divisive. It would not be divisive if it weren't true! Republicans are for untaxed big companies and rich individuals and families in general and that excludes a whole lot – most – people of color, people of ALL colors! We Democrats want that to change.

    August 16, 2008 12:16 pm at 12:16 pm |
  2. RJ, CA

    IDIOT!

    August 16, 2008 12:16 pm at 12:16 pm |
  3. Reader511

    Carly Florina is an idiot if she chooses to think that there will not be race or gender factors in play in this election. There will be MANY factors in play, and race and gender are just two of them.

    While Howard Dean's comment is inappropriate and perhaps even wrong, no one can deny that there are many people who will vote based on race or gender. America has not cleared those hurdles yet.

    August 16, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  4. BW

    He probably shouldn't have said it out loud but I know everyone wonders why the demographics of the parties are as they are. I feel like the southern portion of the Republican party just curiously happen to be old disaffected Civil Rights Act people.

    August 16, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  5. Michigan Independent

    This makes me curious to know what the membership statistics are for the each party...

    August 16, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  6. a southern bell for OBAMA

    I WAS BORN & RAISED AROUND BIGOTS. HAVE BEEN

    ONE MYSELF, ALBEIT, DENYING IT WITH EVERY FIBER

    OF MY BEING. MCSENILE'S CAMPAIGN IS RELYING AND

    USING RACE 99% OF THE TIME. AS WITH BUSH SR., HE

    HAS NOTHING ELSE. MCMORON IS A BUMBLING IDIOT &

    A BUSH VOTING LEGAL RECORD, THAT, HE HAS NO WAY

    OF DENYING. MARGINALIZING OBAMA WITH HIS BRITTNEY

    SPEARS COMPARISON ADD, IS AS JIM CROW AS YOU CAN

    GET WITHOUT DOWN RIGHT HAVING THE MAN ARRESTED.

    HIS SUPPORTERS CAN DENY IT UNTIL THEIR WHITE

    FACES TURN BLUE, BUT IT IS GOD'S UNRELIABLE TRUTH

    August 16, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  7. Jordan Bigel

    GO DEAN! The GOP *is* the "white" party. Lilly white, wonder-bread white, ghost white. Dean is just telling it like it is.

    August 16, 2008 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  8. Don of Fairfax

    Howard Dean is an moron and he proves that fact every time he opens his mouth. This comment speaks volumes for the "back room" strategy of the Dumocrap Party and their leadership or should I say lack of leadership.

    Vote McCain in 2008

    August 16, 2008 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  9. bill

    Race has a lot to do with this presidential election. No matter how we try to deny it, or much people will post to the contrary on this story, we all know that race is a huge factor in this election.

    August 16, 2008 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  10. JP

    Typical from democrats.

    August 16, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  11. Joe in NJ

    Typical of a Democrat accusing the Republicans of racism and sexism. I guess Dean forgot about the racism and sexism that took place during the Obama/Clinton debacle.

    August 16, 2008 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  12. N.Y. Binghamton

    And the idiots too!
    Just look at the picture above!

    August 16, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  13. Dan A

    Carly Fiorina–the backstabbing sleazeball fired from Hewlett Packard for illegally spying on employees when she was CEO–Like she has any right to talk about anyone else. What A LOSER !!!!

    August 16, 2008 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  14. Jon Ross

    Three meager paragraphs are all CNN will dedicate to this story. But you will do a major story attacking an author of a book speaking truth about the fascist nature of Barack Hussien Obama. Obama's jack boots will crush all, including CNN.

    August 16, 2008 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  15. Jim

    Yeah, like butter doesn't melt in Republican mouths.

    Carly, "let's illegally spy on my employees so I can get ahead" Fiorina needs to keep her yap shut.

    August 16, 2008 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  16. adam

    How many non-white Senators or House reps are Republican?

    August 16, 2008 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  17. Margaret

    Not sure if I see the alarm in this statement. The republican party is mostly white, and Dean made a (tasteless) but true joke.

    He's being using this line in his speeches for a while, so I wonder why the press just brought it up? I saw him at the DNC women's club last winter and he said the same statement. The room (very racially diverse) laughed.

    It may be a low quality joke, but it doesn't seem to be so terrible.

    August 16, 2008 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  18. Elvi R.

    Well, it is true what Dean said.

    August 16, 2008 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  19. Tony

    The truth hurts! The white...oops Republican party is all about old white men and women (insert Carly Fiorina here) who are bigoted, narrow minded, judgemental and dangerous (insert Bush Administration here) to our country. All you have to do is look at their platforms....the DNC is filled with people of ALL colors, different backgrounds, sexual orientations, faiths. In contrast, the RNC is filled with OLD WHITE JUDGEMENTAL MEAN SPIRITED HATEFUL BIGOTED NARROW MINDED men and women. They may have a token black or latino on stage....oooh. Get over it Carly, your party will LOSE BIG IN NOVEMBER... GO OBAMA 08

    August 16, 2008 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  20. Bob (NC)

    Just proof that Obama and the Democrats are playing the race card to win this election.

    What a shame.

    August 16, 2008 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  21. John DeCoste

    Howard Dean is a complete idiot and has no idea how to keep his mouth shut. How this guy could be the head of the DNC is a complete mystery.

    August 16, 2008 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  22. APS in Hawaii

    Just goes to show how stupid Howard Dean really is. He is the reason for this whole mess in the Democratic Party with his silence about the dirty tactics in the primary and the Florida and Michigan debacle. Best thing the Democrats can do is to fire the incompetent nut before he causes any more damage.

    August 16, 2008 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  23. Jason Bremerton, Wa

    Leave it to Howard Dean and the democratic party to insert race/gender into the mix. Judging by media coverage and talk topics I would think only the racist republicans do that? This just shows how pathetic the democratic party is.

    August 16, 2008 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  24. tom, valley forge, PA

    How can they let this man continue as the head of the Dem party after all the gaffes, screams and divisive statements??

    August 16, 2008 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  25. anthony

    Maybe it was all in fun, just like McCain's web ads that try to say that Obama is the anti-Christ!

    August 16, 2008 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
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