February 25, 2005
Dean visiting GOP strongholds: Mixed reception likely in Kansas (John Mercurio, 2/24/05,
Democratic National Committee Chairman Howard Dean on Thursday began a two-day visit to the GOP stronghold of Kansas, hoping to erase the notion that his party has surrendered so-called "red states" to Republicans. [...]
Dean is likely to face a mixed reception in Kansas, which at 43 percent trails only Nebraska and Utah in the percentage of population registered as Republicans.
The state hasn't gone for a Democratic presidential candidate since 1964, and President Bush beat John Kerry among Kansans in November by 25 percentage points.
That, Dean said, is precisely why he's traveling there. "I don't think Democrats are ever going to be a national party unless we bring our message to every state, and that includes Kansas," he told the Kansas City Star.
Some local Democrats appear unconvinced.
Gov. Kathleen Sebelius, a Democrat who scored a surprising win in 2002 but is a top GOP target next year, won't appear with Dean during his two-day visit.
An aide noted that Sebelius remained neutral in the DNC race and backed Kerry in the presidential primary.
Rep. Dennis Moore, the state's only congressional Democrat, is traveling out of the country and won't return until next week.
The idea that Democrats' problem is that people aren't hearing them is utter lunacy. Good news for the few Red State Democrats though, the Shuttle is scheduled to start flying again soon and they may be able to pull a Jake Garn and actually leave the planet Earth when Dr. Dean comes to town. Posted by Orrin Judd at February 25, 2005 2:10 PM