Howard Dean has gone from over-caffeinated weirdo to just plain nuts.
He's strayed way off the reservation, making remarks about Republicans that no respectable Democrat wants to be associated with. In a summer lacking any big political stories, his wildly un-PC quips have become the hottest potato in DC.
Good boy, Dean. Good boy.
Fact is, he's doing exactly what he's paid to do as chairman of the Democratic Party. Not that any other Democrats will admit that publicly. Oh no - that's not how this game works. This is the old "make the crazy guy say what we can't afford to" game.
And if you haven't noticed, it's working really well. To sum up, in the past few weeks, Dean has said most Republicans "never made an honest living in their lives" and called the GOP "pretty much a white, Christian party."
Naturally, fellow Democrats act ashamed and embarrassed. Everyone from prospective presidential candidate Joe Biden (DE) to prospective presidential candidate Nancy Pelosi (CA) has hit the airwaves in the past few days, distancing themselves from Dean and his whacked-out remarks.
But they do it slowly, as if waiting their turn. It's as if they're trying to keep the story alive, isn't it?
All the while, everyone from Chris Matthews to Bill O'Reilly is debating Dean's comments. Are Republicans really all white and Christian? Do they not do honest work? Is the party racist?
Party chairman is a thankless job, and Dean knows it. He gets to spark those debates the Democrats need to spark but can't afford to be associated with. He then gets to endure the feigned disdain of his more electable colleagues. Hell - a guy would have to be nuts to take a job like that.
3. On the right track