Nader runs as an independent, and sometime in the next week or so Howard Dean casually says that he thinks Nader is “an important voice” in the campaign, someone he could support.
That’s just worst case. I don’t think Dean will do it, unless John Kerry hits Dean’s kids with his minivan in the next week or something, but… I shudder.
Also: What *is* John Kerry doing with a minivan? From ABC’s The Note: The only other major delevelopment occurred at 12:01am EST as a three car Secret Service detail descended upon Senator Kerry’s Beacon Hill home in Boston. Only moments prior to the body watch invasion, Kerry’s minivan and home had been entirely unguarded.” — from today’s daily campaign report of ABC News’ world-class Kerry reporter Ed O’Keefe, with his latest work of classic American journalism (More on this below.)
Still from The Note:
Our favorite four words in the English language: ABC’s Ann Compton reports:
“The US Secret Service confirms this morning that protection began at midnight for Senator Kerry.”The process begins with a request from the candidate, cleared by a five person leadership committee in Congress, and then a recommendation to the Secy of Homeland Security (which now has the USSS instead of Treasury.)”
“I am told other candidate protection is “under discussion” which does not sound immediate.””And to The Note: what code name would YOU suggest for each of the contenders? Rules traditionally dictate they are simple, two-syllable words easily heard in two-way radio traffic … . all Democrats used to have names starting with ‘D’ and Republicans with ‘R.’ And the codename expresses some characteristic of the candidate (Dole-Ramrod, Reagan-Rawhide, Carter-Dasher.) Wives and children also get names. Family members all start with the same letter. Hillary Clinton, for example, was Evergreen. Codenames are changed for an elected President. Bush 41 was Timberwolf, Barbara Bush was Tranquility. And presidential son George W. was at one time ‘Tumbler.'”
“Before my time, JFK was Lancer and Jackie was Lace.”
“Weirdest choices which were soon replaced were 1977:”
“Carter-Lockmaster, Rosalynn-LotusPath, Amy Carter-Lemondrop (ouch!)”
(Out of respect to protective ops, we’ll leave out 43’s current code name.) Please send your Kerry/Teresa code names to email@example.com. We have already picked out one for Chris Heinz, but we’ll reveal it Monday.
The political implications of this: Even with a small detail (a car, a follow-up, a chase car), being surrounded by hard-bodied Armani-wearing men and women with clear-coil ear pieces, flashy lapel pins lends an aura of importance to anyone. Plus, crowd control is easier. Plus, Kerry will get to and from events more quickly … Plus, and most obviously, an important political figure is protected from harm by some of America’s finest. On the downside … wait for those arguments about who gets to sit where, from where does Kerry enter, why can’t Kerry attend open air crowd events … etc … And then there’s the whole danger of effecting a Gore-like distance from real people, and the potential blowback from closed roads and magging galore.
And just because I think it’s sort of bizarro funny, from The New York Daily News:
Kerry on smooching
A kiss on the hand may be quite continental, but Rush Limbaugh isn’t John Kerry’s best friend.
The rehabbed radio pundit claims Teresa Heinz Kerry winced when her husband kissed her hand after he bagged the Wisconsin primary on Tuesday. Limbaugh said: “It is obvious Teresa doesn’t want to be there.”
Kerry’s rep fired back that the smooch “absolutely was warm and appropriate.” She told the Washington Post: “They are an incredibly warm couple, and you don’t have to spend much time around them to tell that.”