Former DNC Chairman Governor Howard Dean announced on Thursday that he plans to run for Democratic National Committee chair. The current chair is Donna Brazile, but she is an interim chair to fill the seat until a successor is elected. Brazile took over from Representative Debbie Wasserman Schultz who resigned in the wake of WikiLeaks reports that the DNC favored Clinton over Sanders during the primary. Brazile has said she has no interest in serving another term.
The Clinton loss has had two impacts on the chair race. First, if Clinton had won, she would have been able to appoint the chair. Her losing is the only reason that there will be an election. Second, party leaders are grappling with their loss and how to be move forward. There are differing views on what should have been done and what should be done.
Dean tweeted, “The dems need organization and focus on the young. Need a fifty State strategy and tech rehab. I am in for chairman again.”
Dean served as DNC chair from 2005 to 2009, presiding over the wildly successfully 2006 and 2008 elections. Dean’s signature policy was the 50 state strategy which was where Democrats competed in all fifty states, including traditionally Republican states. The program had two major successes as it allowed Democrats to expand their field and win in more areas while also building the Democratic bench for the long term. During President Obama’s tenure, the Democratic Party has suffered significant losses in the House and state legislatures which will have long term impact as the party looks to recruit state and federal candidates.