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Howard Dean: Tea party the ‘last gasp of the 55-year-old generation’

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Slams Obama’s staffers’ ‘contempt’ for liberals

The tea party movement represents “the last gasp of a generation that has trouble with diversity,” Howard Dean told an audience Wednesday.

The former governor of Vermont and head of the Democratic National Committee told a breakfast hosted by the Christian Science Monitor that he expects the tea party to be a powerful influence in the 2012 election as it was in the 2010 election, but he doesn’t see it as the future of American politics.

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“I think it’s the last gasp of the 55-year-old generation, not the first gasp of a new generation,” he said. “It’s a group of older folks who’ve seen their lives change dramatically. The country’s not the same … All of a sudden it’s here for them and they don’t know what to do … Every morning when they see the president they’re reminded that things are totally different than when they were born.”

Dean, who became a folk hero to progressives after his iconoclastic 2004 presidential run, suggested that the Republicans may find it more difficult to attract voters in the future, as the influence of the over-55 crowd wanes. But he said the GOP could still attract new voters, provided they change their message.

“They can get this younger generation,” he said. “But they can’t get it on the backs of gays and immigrants, because many of their friends are gays and immigrants.”

Dean also welcomed the staffing changes at the White House and criticized current White House staffers who he said had “contempt” for the president’s progressive base.

Dean didn’t name names, but the comment seemed targeted at Press Secretary Robert Gibbs, who announced this week he will be leaving the White House. In an interview with The Hill last summer, Gibbs criticized the “professional left” for their frustration with President Obama’s policies, provoking anger among liberals.

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Aside from Gibbs, economic advisers Paul Volcker and Larry Summers are also leaving.

“As they say, don’t let the door hit you in the you-know-what on the way out,” Dean said.

The following video was uploaded to the Web by the Christian Science Monitor.

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Breaking Banner

Russia went looking for puppets in America — and they found Trump and the Republicans

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The Russians wasted decades infiltrating the left attempting to gain purchase in American political life. There was the Communist Party USA, of course. Established in 1919, the CPUSA grew through the 1930s and boasted a membership of about 100,000 at the beginning of World War II. A hundred thousand! Whoop-de-doo!

This article first appeared in Salon

Then there were the spinoff lefty parties like the Socialist Workers Party, the Progressive Labor Party, the Workers World Party, the Socialist Labor Party, the Progressive Labor Party — we could go on listing one splinter group after another with “socialist” or “labor” or “workers” in its title. They were tiny groups with memberships that were sometimes less than 100, and they would all deny being infiltrated by the Russkies, naturally. So would the “New Left” groups that came later, like SDS and The Weathermen. Nobody wanted to admit they were under Russian influence. Everything they were doing, from opposing the war in Vietnam to civil rights to fighting for free speech, was being done for completely pure reasons.

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CNN

GOP strategist walloped for urging Dem lawmakers to leave Trump alone and worry about being re-elected instead

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On CNN Saturday, Democratic strategist Maria Cardona and Republican strategist Doug Heye clashed after the latter suggested Democrats should value their re-election over holding President Donald Trump accountable for wrongdoing.

"We have to remember, this is not a trial as we think of trials in courtroom," said Heye. "This is a political process. It is designed to be a political process, and that's why this whole process is played out the way that it has so far. I would say to Maria, the Republicans aren't spending money to shore up Republicans per se. They're spending money to go after vulnerable Democrats who are going home and then coming back and telling Nancy Pelosi and Democratic leadership, I'm getting killed back home."

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2020 Election

William Barr made it clear this week that he’d sign off on a sham investigation into the Dems’ 2020 nominee

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Welcome to another edition of What Fresh Hell?, Raw Story’s roundup of news items that might have become controversies under another regime, but got buried – or were at least under-appreciated – due to the daily firehose of political pratfalls, unhinged tweet storms and other sundry embarrassments coming out of the current White House.

A perfect storm propelled New York's sleaziest real estate developer to an Electoral College victory in 2016 despite winning three million fewer votes than his opponent, but Nate Silver made a compelling argument that the letter James Comey sent to Congress just 11 days before Election Day announcing that the FBI was re-opening its probe into Hillary Clinton's emails was decisive.

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