The Party Chairman, the Internet candidate of 2004 who flamed out in Iowa with a primal scream, has appointed himself to mediate who the candidate will be this year if the voters can't decide between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama by the end of summer.
"I think we will have a nominee sometime in the middle of March or April," Dean told an interviewer before Tuesday's results were in. "But if we don’t, then we’re going to have to get the candidates together and make some kind of an arrangement. Because I don’t think we can afford to have a brokered convention.”
A few weeks ago, Dean was saying about the campaigns, "The truth is, it's not that ferocious yet, and I hope it doesn't get ferocious, and I obviously have some responsibility to make sure it doesn't...I don't want it to get personal, and we have a protocol for what to do if it does."
A protocol? Is washing mouths out with soap involved?
Let's see if we have this straight: After Clinton and Obama have spent umpteen millions and a year criss-crossing the country, if the voters can't make up their minds in time for an orderly convention in late August, Uncle Howard will get them together and do what? Toss a coin?
Never mind that the original purpose of conventions was to pick a candidate not put on a TV special for the party, it takes a special kind of hubris for Dean to suggest that he will get the candidates together and "make some kind of arrangement."
At least, in the bad old days of smoke-filled rooms, it took a gaggle of party bosses to anoint the nominee. Has Dean decided to streamline the process down to just one?