Dean’s Demise and Taking on Bush

Daniel Kreiss

in Taking Our Country Back

Published in print August 2012 | ISBN: 9780199782536
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199950614 | DOI:

Series: Oxford Studies in Digital Politics

Dean’s Demise and Taking on Bush

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This chapter begins with Dean’s “Sleepless Summer Tour” and ends with Kerry’s defeat at the hands of George W. Bush. Dean’s eight-city tour drew tens of thousands to rallies, revealing the extent of the candidate’s national support and the power of staffers’ use of the Internet to mobilize supporters across the country. The success of Sleepless Summer provides a revealing contrast to what was happening on the ground in Iowa, which the campaign’s leadership began to realize was seriously flawed. Staffers on the ground in Iowa faced significant data issues and lacked basic tools for organizing volunteers and contacting voters, even as national campaign staffers faced extensive data and systems issues of their own. Ineffective television advertisements left the campaign broke, and Dean had little hope for a better outcome than third. Dean’s highly publicized “scream” that endlessly replayed on national television effectively ended his candidacy. The chapter concludes by following the work of a number of Dean’s staffers and consultants who joined the campaign of John Kerry to work on Internet operations.

Keywords: Howard Dean; George W. Bush; John Kerry; Iowa; Sleepless Summer Tour; New Hampshire

Chapter.  11886 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: US Politics

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