Potential Obama Challenger in 2012 Is ... Howard Dean?

Roger Simon think it's possible, but a Dean spokesman denies
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 4, 2010 12:43 PM CDT
Former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean in a 2009 file photo.   (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
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(Newser) – The jockeying is well under way among Republicans to see who will emerge as the GOP challenger to President Obama in 2012. But at Politico, Roger Simon says the White House is keeping a wary eye on a Democrat: Howard Dean. "While today it looks impossible" that Obama would face an intra-party fight, "in politics you have to prepare for the impossible."

Simon says Obama looked "almost meek" in yesterday's press conference, while Dean sounded defiant in a phone interview. "Which one do you think an angry and dispirited Democratic Party might go for?" It's true that Clinton and Reagan rebounded from miserable midterms, but neither faced a legitimate contender from within his party, notes Simon. He isn't the first to raise the prospect, and a Dean spokesman responds to the Washington Post: "He is absolutely, categorically not running in 2012." (Read more Howard Dean stories.)

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