Howard Dean addressed his supporters today, and you have to hand it to the man. He can turn the progressive phrase. I do hope that Gov. Dean takes the energy of his supporters and keeps them involved. We need more grass roots activism in this country. We need people to understand that activism takes time. It’s not about one win or one race. It’s about the long haul. It’s about making the best possible choice even when you can’t make the perfect choice.
The next few years should tell us whether or not Dean’s campaign had a lasting effect. I do think that he was the first presidental candidate to understand the grass roots power of the internet. (I think that Jessie Ventura’s first run for governor figured it out first.) The problems with the Dean campaign don’t overshadow that. Now, every campaign will have to have a "blog" even if most of them don’t and won’t really understand why a blog is different than a public relations release machine.
Smart candidates will understand what Dean understood… that people will respond to candidates who use the internet to bring the candidate closer to the people. Dean seemed to thrive on his interactions with every day people, and his internet strategy captured that energy.
I can’t wait to see what he does from here.