August 22nd, 2010
11:02 AM ET
12 years ago

Dean: Obama political advisers have 'misjudged'

Washington (CNN) – Former Democratic National Committee chairman Howard Dean said Sunday that President Obama's political advisers are suffering from an inside-the-beltway mentality, but that Democrats will retain majorities in the House and Senate.

"I think the people around the president have really misjudged what goes on elsewhere in the country other than Washington, D.C.," Dean, also the former governor of Vermont, said on CNN's State of the Union. "I don't think this is true of the president, but I do think his people, his political people ought to go out and spend some time outside Washington once in a while."

Dean has, at times, been a voice of dissent within the Democratic Party and has disagreed publicly with the Obama administration on key issues, including health care reform legislation, the military's "don't ask, don't tell" policy and, most recently, the construction of an Islamic center and mosque near ground zero.

But despite his criticism of Obama's political team, Dean told CNN Chief Political Correspondent Candy Crowley that Democrats could retain control of the House and Senate.

"I'd bet money on the Senate for sure. The House is much tougher, I think at the end of the day, we are going to win in the House, and we are going to have a majority. It'll probably be reduced ... perhaps as small as a five or ten seat majority. We simply have better candidates," Dean said.

With the November midterm elections now just months away, Dean said the time has come for Democrats to put aside their policy differences and focus on electoral success.

"We've got to win this election, and after the election is over we can go back to having our policy fights. But this is about winning. You can't get anything done unless you have a Democratic president, a Democratic Senate and a Democratic House," Dean said.

Filed under: 2010 • Howard Dean • President Obama
soundoff (69 Responses)
  1. walter

    Asking Dean about the left's prospects for November is like asking Rush Limbaugh his opinion of liberals. You know what he's going to say before he even says it. His role is to spin everything so the Dems look good. What value is there in the opinions of someone like that.

    August 22, 2010 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  2. chris

    rham and the blue dogs need to go. I for one will celebrate when the majority of blue dogs (house and senate) are defeated and will jump for joy when rham leaves.

    August 22, 2010 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  3. jim

    Where were his advisors when he decided to turn the Afghanistan war from a NATO mission to a U.S. led war with an additional 60,000 troops?

    August 22, 2010 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  4. vernis robertson

    The Repubs want the american people to be divided . This is why they keep spreading propaganda .

    August 22, 2010 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  5. Guess Who

    This will eventually boil down to the lesser of two evils. Look into your mind’s eye and see Grizzly Palin as your President. Then realize that Fox News and Billy Crystal with this merry bunch of Neo’s are running the country. Then dig deeper and realize it’s an Australian old man who is actually in charge of America.
    Long live the Queen. Britain, we need your help!

    August 22, 2010 12:36 pm at 12:36 pm |
  6. Anonymous

    Dean is partyly correct, BUT the dems will suffer huge losses in the house and senate. The repubs will likely take control of the House and possibly the Senate, as well.

    August 22, 2010 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |
  7. Jim Hannon

    Dean is still feuding with Rahm Emanuel. Their ego contest shouldn't be front and center at this critical moment. Dean needs to get over himself (as should Rahm) and work for Dem victories in November. And Dean's position on the Muslim Community Center in NYC is revolting. He should know better but he has too much need for the spotlight and too much desire to make Rahm and other advisers look bad. He's still angry that he wasn't given a major role in the Obama administration.

    August 22, 2010 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |
  8. Rile

    Dean is partyly correct, BUT the dems will suffer huge losses in the house and senate. The repubs will likely take control of the House and possibly the Senate, as well.

    August 22, 2010 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  9. Robert

    @ Vernis: Wow. You REALLY need to stop drinking the kool-aid, buddy. For your own good.

    August 22, 2010 12:39 pm at 12:39 pm |
  10. Rick McDaniel

    There's no way for the Dems to retain control of Congress. They have passed legislation against the will of the people, they have done nothing to create jobs, they have wasted billions of tax dollars, which they cannot even account for.

    They are fiscally irresponsible, ineffective, and useless.

    Any other choice, than Dem, will be a better choice.

    August 22, 2010 12:40 pm at 12:40 pm |
  11. jd

    When is everyone going to wake up? Democrats are destructing America by tearing down what made us great. Capitalism!!

    August 22, 2010 12:41 pm at 12:41 pm |
  12. Rob NY

    Dean is correct. Are you listening Mr President?

    August 22, 2010 12:42 pm at 12:42 pm |
  13. HNIC

    Mr J
    You just proved my point. POTUS did not VOTE for nor give his SUPPORT for the mosque, other than to state that in this and all other matters of religion, the constitution holds.

    People really need to stop watching Fox news and get the true Fair and Balanced story.

    August 22, 2010 12:43 pm at 12:43 pm |
  14. Robert


    Good list! Dems are, as you said, "fiscally irresponsible, ineffective, and useless". I think we're going to see that come November a majority of Americans feel the same way. I'd also add "clueless" to the list, which will be apparent in November.

    Actually, what I think you'll see over the next month or so is some of the more "aware" Democrats will start to realize they're in a tough spot, so they'll change their tune. They'll predictably bash Bush, yammer on about the Party of No (even though their own solutions are ridiculously detrimental to the country), etc. By late October they're going to be singing the Republican line in their desperate attempt to stay in power. BUT IT ISN'T GOING TO WORK! 🙂

    August 22, 2010 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  15. Marc Wilks

    Dean is delusional. The democrats are in real danger of losing the Senate and the House is not even close to being a sure thing. Obama and his band of idiots have sealed their own fate

    August 22, 2010 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  16. Russ

    The mainstream American public is rejecting Obama's socialist policies.... that is why his poll numbers have tanked and will never come back.... and liberals just don't understand that...

    Hey democrats, we are tired of your whiney, gimme, gimme, gimme rants from the professional entitlement class.

    August 22, 2010 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  17. Von Bismark-Vienna

    And ye shall hear the vuvuzela sound and the voice of Truth shall sound

    August 22, 2010 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  18. FM

    I heard Karl Rove saying "if you don't like what is going on, then change the driver". Mr. Rove, if we change the driver, we do not go back to the same driver who proved in the eyes of god and of all people, that he is an expert in putting the car in a ditch!

    August 22, 2010 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  19. In the West

    "When is everyone going to wake up? Democrats are destructing America by tearing down what made us great. Capitalism!!"

    JD, you're a sorry example of so many people who profess to be patriots but know next to nothing about our nation. The USA's greatness comes directly from the founders' decision, in the last quarter of the 18th century, to form a nation governed of the people, by the people and for the people (Lincoln's description of it), as opposed to hereditary monarchy. Their plan was clearly written down in the Declaration of Independence and the US Constitution (including the Bill of Rights). That was decades before the concept of capitalism, as we now use it, even existed.

    August 22, 2010 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
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