Tuesday, February 22, 2005
NY Times Editorial
We all warned of buyer's remorse after Iowa and New Hampshire last year; too bad it took a general election defeat for people to listen.
"As the Democrats' newly chosen party chairman, Howard Dean has a fresh opportunity to be remembered as someone other than that presidential candidate who yelped defiantly in the face of defeat. The Democrats' fortunes are obviously at a low point. But Mr. Dean, in his surprising victory in the contest for chairman, showed a revivalist's energy and a new talent for working across the political spectrum in winning over state party leaders....
Ultimately, Mr. Dean will be judged on the presidential election of 2008. The first benchmark in this task comes next month, when a 40-member party commission begins studying what is right and wrong about the primary process that produced Senator John Kerry as the nominee. The helter-skelter process clearly needs fixing, starting with its overemphasis on front-loading contests. The tight calendar of winner-take-all bouts allows scant opportunity for shopper's remorse.
One of the commission's leaders, Representative David Price of North Carolina, was right when he noted that the party "needs to provide something other than a rush to judgment." Mr. Price, a political science professor at Duke University, has been through this before, serving as director of the Hunt Commission, which helped tune up the rules in the 1980's. Now he is wise to emphasize that a more deliberative pace would hardly hurt the Democrats' next search for the strongest nominee."