Several of us have created flyers and other resources explaining why it is still important to vote for Dean. On this page, let's share our stories as individuals. If you had the chance to tell your story to your fellow Americans, about why you are still voting for Howard Dean, what would you say? I'll start...
My husband and I have never even voted in a primary before, but we were so inspired by Howard Dean's courage and his message that we actually started volunteering for him last July. My husband is a computer animator and graphic artist. Together we put up a web site (People-Powered Graphics) with flyers, bumper stickers, postcards-- all sorts of resources that our grassroots community needs--and they can print these things out for free.
Probably the most famous creation on People Powered Graphics is "Flat Howard". Another Dean supporter wanted a life size cardboard cutout of howard dean, and my husband Demetrius created one that people can print out and put together themselves. We've seen "Flat Howard" show up on the news, in the paper, and we've seen pictures of people posing with Flat Howard as far away as Japan. All in all, it has been an amazing experience--working together will people all around the world, building a real community, and helping people we've never even met.
Since Howard Dean has suspended his campaign--but he is still on the ballot--people ask who we're going to vote for now? As if there could be any question. How could I work for 7 months for one candidate and not vote for him? Howard Dean earned my vote--none of the other candidates did!
Back in September, Bill Clinton said this at the Harkin Steak Fry in Iowa: "Go ahead, fall in love, be for somebody, "but when the primary's over, let's fall in line and bring the White House back to our party."
The primary is not over yet--no matter what the corporate media says. The primary is when we get to vote for the candidate we think is best. In November, I'm going to vote against Bush, but the primary is my chance to vote for somebody--and that somebody for me is still Howard Dean.
Your turn. Why are you
still voting for Howard Dean? What are you still doing for the campaign? E-mail
me at renee(at)bmgbiz.net and I will add your response.
I've always been interested
in politics. As a child, my dad was a state legislator and later a county
commissioner in Oregon. He was dedicated to keeping Oregon beautiful, wild,
and tolerant--I thought all politicians were this way. I wanted to be President
when I was in elementary school.
In high school, I realized that all politicians weren't like my dad, and I started doubting my elementary school textbook's assertion that everyone in the U.S. is a part of our democracy. It became clear that money, power, connections, and influence ran politics in America. If you didn't have those things, you didn't matter. I decided this was particularly the case in the Republican Party, but even the Democrats weren't as noble and do-gooder as I had thought.
As I began my freshman year in college in Middlebury, Vermont, George Bush was handed over the presidency by the Supreme Court. All idealism I had every possessed about politics was quicly dashed. On September 11 of my sophomore year, I watched, stunned, as 2 planes toppled the Twin Towers.
I never imagined how Bush would play this to his advantage. For the next two years, I watched in disbelief as civil liberties, the environment, social programs, America's standing in the world, and our country's basic tendencies towards goodness and hope were trounced by Bush. I felt betrayed by the Democrats in Congress, who seemed to have rolled over dead in the face of Bush's high approval ratings and agressive neo-con policies.
Then, the governor from Vermont came onto the radar screen. He denounced Bush as a reckless President who had led us into a false war based on pretenses of fear. Dean's no-nonsense straight talk and refusal to sugarcoat his stances appealed to me. So did his realism and desire to look beyond the typical politician's 4-year forsight, declaring that we need a 20-year policy for healthy children and a 100-year policy for a healthy environment. I liked this guy.
However, I truly fell in love when a friend convinced me to take off a week of classes in January of 2004 and drive out to Iowa to canvass for Dr. Dean. The empowerment and hope I experienced there were like nothing I had ever felt before. Surrounded by caffeine-fueled union workers, retired seniors, middle-aged professionals, unemployed people, and other college students, I truly understood the meaning of the grassroots movement. My idealism returned to me, and I understood the potential of average Americans taking back the political scene for our benefit, instead of for the rich and the corporate.
That idealism has essentially been dashed since Iowa. I mostly blame the media and the Democratic Establishment for Dean's demise. But the empowerment that Dean instilled in his supporters across the country keeps me inspired. We started out this campaign to change the country, and I know we won't stop until that happens.
I am very new to the Dean
campaign. I only started tuning in to the presidential campaign last December
and due to other volunteer commitments have not even been to a Meetup! (that
will change next week) Last year my children's school was slated for closure,
we had an emergency local tax option, and I devoted many months to school
activism and just generally getting through the days as a busy working mom
with 3 kids. National politics were not on my radar screen, as I was in despair
of ever getting rid of Bush, let alone finding a Democrat who would inspire
It didn't take much time reading up on him and watching clips from speeches before I was devoted to Dean. There are many reasons why I love Dean--his record of achievement in Vermont is awesome--but if I had to boil it down to one reason, it's that he speaks the truth--unlike any other politician I've ever heard. (Of course, his honesty is part of the reason the media felt the need to destroy him; but we can work on them...)
I haven't done a whole lot--I've contributed some money, written letters to undecided voters, talked back to the newspaper's public editor, and spent way, way too many hours reading the blog. I am in awe of the grassroots and the folks who have created ads, flyers, and led massive efforts for many months on behalf of the Governor. Thank you all.
I am still in mourning for what could and should have been. I look forward to taking our country back! I believe, with many others, that Howard Dean is the type of leader who comes along once in a lifetime. Conservatives have had Reagan and so many others who inspire their fierce devotion. Now, at last, it's our turn. I can't wait to vote for Howard Dean in the Oregon primary.
Why still for Howard Dean?
Because I have THE power. Gov. Dean awakened the power that I had lying dormant, in that sad, tired, shuttered off portion of myself. I lost the feeling that I could make a difference in my country. But, I signed up to help Gov. Dean get elected, and by doing so I met many people in my community that I would otherwise never have met. I am enriched by my experiences during this campaign, my 2 trips to Iowa, the excruciating LONG bus ride from San Antonio to Des Moines (and back), and galvanized even now by the enthusiasm and dedication of people who really care about this country. Best of all, to me, are the people I have met in person and on the blog. There are so many of us that feel the same way about issues, legislation, and what our country really needs. Gov. Dean brought us together for a common goal, which ultimately was about our country. Let us not forget that we need to rescue democracy from Bush and company. Get out there and learn how the system works, then make your voice heard. If we learn the system, we can beat it, and the schmucks who want to keep all the goodies for themselves.
The Dean campaign for me meant freedom. A wonderful welling up of freedom to speak my mind regardless of what others might say; meetups where I meant like minded people; feeling that I could actually change the status quo; making friends; feeling that I mattered in the scheme of things.
I already voted for Dean absentee but I would do it again today. This is the first election in a long time where I got to vote FOR somebody that I really wanted.
Howard Dean grew and grew on me. After my husband Miles (who has made many customizable flyers at northbaydean,org) discovered Dean back in April 2003 he downloaded many of the position papers which I read and was immediately hooked. But when I heard Dean give a speech I was so moved tears rolled down my cheeks. I remember that first experience was viewing a CD ROM on the computer of the Sacramento "What I want to know" speech. I was very eager for videos and DVDs so I could share it with everyone I knew.
Eventually we got all of that and I spent more and more of my time showing people who Dean is, until it took up ALL of my available time, tabling, making flyers and videos to give people and helping get other volunteers active. He is the candidate I have always wanted; someone who is honest, means business and has a practical, common sense approach to changing the system into one that is geared towards helping ordinary Americans be the best they can be. He is God's gift to the Democratic Party and they just don't see it.
I helped Jan Cadoret get the CA Women For Dean ads going in California and am very happy that they will be in four newspapers on Monday. They make the case to vote for Dean to get delegates and also mention that he is a champion for women's issues. I hope they make an impact.
Dean will always be the
person I think of as MY President and I will continue to work towards that
goal. Howard Dean forever.
When I was in 7th grade
John Kennedy was elected president. I thought I would die if he didn't get
elected. I've waited 44 years for a candidate I could get as passionate about.
Then I fould Howard Dean. People ask me why I still wear my Dean button. I
tell them that he is still on the ballot in every state that still has a primary
coming. I telll them that I will vote for him because he is the only candidate
I fully suppport. He brought me into politics for the first time. I have met
him 3 times. I have never bothered to meet a Presidential candidate before.
I live in Ohio. I went to Iowa for the perfect storm. I wrote letters to people
in other states, am still active in the meet-ups. I tell them he is not going
away. I tell them that we love him and that the movement lives on.
I will tell you what I
am doing NOW, among other things, for Howard Dean. I am also a member of the
Dean RR Team and write letters to the media.
I am writing you from the Finger Lakes region in Western New York. I am 80 years old. My life was changed last summer by the words of Howard Dean.
His words to all Americans, then and now, are these: "The power is in your hands. You have the power!" these few words, Howard Dean's message of hope, and his record of accomplishement, as Governor of Vermont, have inspired hundreds of thousands of people all over America to become actively engaged in the political process for the first time in their lives..
People in positions of power cannot hear these words. They are threatened by them. There is nothing more threatening to those in power than an awakened, informed and engaged people. Howard Dean is an awakener.
After months of being mocked, humiliated, and brutalized by the establishment media and the inside-Washington politicians, Howard Dean withdrew from his active campaign for President. The media has chosen our candidates for us and they are celebrating their power. They have narrowed their choice down to two candidates, two inside-Washington politicians, Senators Kerry and Edwards. these two men are running their campaigns on Howard Dean's message. That is good. The promises they are making are Dean-inspired promises.
As actual voters, we need
to send a clear message to these two men that the Democratic Party, whose
nomination they seek, supports a platform for real change to win our country
back from George Bush and the large corporate interests that drive his policies.
Howard dean's name is still on the ballot. Your support for Dean now is your support for his message. Your vote for Dean now sends delegates to Boston to fight for his message. You can have it both ways. You can have Kerry or Edwards as your candidate against George Bush and at the same time hold them to their promises. Your vote for Howard Dean is your vote for Delegates for Dean.
PS. Last night I read on the internet that on the day that Howard Dean withdrew from active campaigning for President, the news reporters gave him a tee shirt. On the front it said ESTABLISHMENT MEDIA, on the back was written WE HAVE THE POWER.
The corporate media is not a gigantic human being. It is a disembodied voice. It is the Wizard of OZ all over again, behind a TV screen, living in a green word of American dollars. Their disembodied voice does not have to be translated into actual votes. WE give them their power, over our minds and our bodies. WE are the votes.
We must not only continue but accelerate and intensify the work that Howard Dean has begun on our behalf. We must come together as Americans, honoring the diversity which is at the core of our union, honoring life not death. We must rebuild our American community from the bottom up.
From Bridgett in Olney, Illinois
Im still voting for Howard Dean because as hard as I try, I cant get excited about anyone else. He is truly the Real Deal! Im thirty-seven, and Ive always voted, but Ive never felt as inspired to do something, to change things, as when I became involved in the Howard Dean campaign. I will vote for Howard Dean as long as Howard Dean is on the ballot because he speaks for real change. He speaks for me, my family, my neighbors!
I've had several people
(mostly Kerry supporters) express surprise that we are still doing anything
for Dean. I tell them either, "Didn't you know? Howard Dean isn't just
for President anymore." - or - "We still
have to take our country back." I also tell them about the new organization Howard Dean is forming that will be announced on March 18.
People who didn't have
the chance to see Dean in person or who just couldn't believe he wasn't just
saying whatever it takes to get elected don't really understand what the Dean
campaign is/was all about. This was never really about electing Howard Dean
President. This is truly a movement to take our country back from the corporate
interests that have bought our government and control our media. We want a
government that represents the interests of ordinary Americans, as well as
the interests of big oil companies, pharmaceutical companies, HMO's, huge
media conglomerates, defense contractors, agribusiness, etc. We want access
to health care, investment in young children, civil rights for all. The quickest
and easiest way to take our country back was to elect Howard Dean President
and take back Congress at the same time. Well it doesn't look like that will
happen this year. But we STILL need to take our country back! We are not done
yet. And even if John Kerry manages to beat Bush (something I worry about
since I detect early signs of rejection of the spinal transplant Dr. Dean
gave him), we'll STILL need to take back our country. Johny Kerry is as beholding
to the corporate
interests and media interests that have financed his career as any other Washington insider. We have to be in a position to insist that John Kerry give our concerns something more than lip service. (I am NOT saying John Kerry wouldn't be preferable to the odious Bush. With Kerry I see us stuck in our current mess. With Bush, it's back to the 1890's.)
Thank you, Howard. You gave me hope. You gave me power. You gave me wonderful Dean people and your inspired leadership to help me take our country back. And that's exactly what we're going to do!
See you at Meetup.
Dr. Dean said, "The
biggest lie people like me tell people like you is that we can solve all your
problems. YOU HAVE THE POWER," and life hasn't been quite the same since
I heard those words. Neither have I quit talking about Howard Dean to friends,
coworkers and family members. Most of them say they are not interested in
politics and I understand why, and I understand that; I've been there. Hearing
about him, however, made some -- not all -- want to learn more.
I support Howard Dean because he is the first candidate I encountered whom I actually believe. He has the experience to lead. He knows the issues, both at home and abroad. He did his homework! He is unafraid to voice an unpopular opinion.
1. Howard Dean channels my thoughts, especially with regard to (a) the economy and (b) the war in Iraq.
2. I believe that Dr. Dean offers the American people a choice. He has vision, hope and the power to move and lead others.
3. I believe that in choosing a president, we must NOT be forced to choose the lesser of two evils.
4. Howard Dean did not lie to me. Neither did he insult my intelligence.
In summary, Dr. Dean became the compass I will follow.
Howard Dean is an intelligent, gutsy, honest and admirable man. Only he could have pulled this cynical and pessimistic grad student out of her self-congratulatory apathy. Sure I followed politics. But it was a subject for me to dissect -- definitely not an arena worthy of my participation. I remember watching documentaries on the assassination of JFK and seeing the tearful reactions of ordinary citizens when their president was shot. I asked myself if I would cry over the death of any politician, and I was horrified at my own answer: I didn't care enough about any politician to cry about them.
As a 23-year-old trying to make her way through grad school while holding down a full-time job, I felt ignored by most politicians. They were always promising to take care of children and seniors. The only people trying to reach out to me were advertisers. My money was good enough for soft drinks, CDs, movies and shoes; but my voice, my actions, my thoughts and my opinions seemed of little value outside of the academic arena.
Howard Dean's campaign changed everything in my life. I began attending meet-ups and participating in campaigning activities such as writing letters to undecided voters. I participated in visibility events and even proselytized to my friends on the merits of Dean's record. The Dean campaign basically became my third job and even overtook school and work in importance. I donated to the campaign, and it never felt as if I had done enough or donated enough. Participation was addictive.
And then, on February 18, I did what I never, EVER thought I was capable of doing: I cried for a politician. It didn't even take a death to cause me to sob uncontrollably. I cried because I felt the nation had suffered an incomparable loss. I cried because of an unfulfilled potential. I cried because I had lost hope.
And now, after the blackest of night has passed, I realize I can still voice my support for Dean in the form of a vote. Only Dean has earned my vote. Nobody else cared enough to try.
I will vote for Dean on
March 2 because the dream of a Dean presidency is a dream too beautiful to
surrender just yet.
When I am asked, "Why are you still voting Dean?" the answer, "To prove WE have the power" gets the most positive response. I talked to dozens of people as I passed out fliers at the New Haven rally on Thursday and that phrase got the far and away the most "I like that!" and "Yes!" -type responses.
If we can win votes and delegates for Howard Dean through grassroots efforts alone, we are proving that We Have the Power. If we are successful, we will provide a concrete example of "people power" that serves to break the bonds of conventional wisdom that shuts people out of politics. If we are unsuccessful in winning delegates, the effort itself serves us. The experience and knowledge we gain of the political "lay of the land" in our respective states will be invaluable, and every person who enlists with us in this effort will be a proven fighter; someone who is willing to step in and fight against long odds to make their voice heard. These are the type of people we need in the our ongoing struggle to take our country back.
Prove You Have the Power with a Vote for Dean!
Or, for a longer tag line:
Prove You Have the Power
with a Vote for Dean!
Vote Against Washington with a Vote for Dean!
Vote None of the Above with a Vote for Dean!
Vote Against the Special Interests with a Vote for Dean!
Heck, you can vote for one of the Johnny-come-latelies if you truly believe one and not the other has what it takes to put this country back on the right track.
But if you don't, join
Project Your Power with a Vote for Dean!!
-------- More Fun "Vote for Dean" Slogans ------------------
Vote to be Green with a Vote for Dean!
Vote to be Seen with a Vote for Dean!
Go Vent Your Spleen with a Vote for Dean!
Vote and Feel Clean with a Vote for Dean!
You Can Feel Keen with a Vote for Dean!
Don't Waiver or Lean with a Vote for Dean!
Go Say What You Mean with a Vote for Dean!
Feel Like a Queen with a Vote for Dean!
Be Heard at 18 with a Vote for Dean!