Howard Dean will go to Iowa later this month, prompting some to wonder if he's going to join Joe Biden in a competition to lose the 2016 democratic nomination for president to Hillary Clinton. While it's science fact that any time a politician travels to Iowa this year, someone adds 2016 to the end of his or her name, Dean's visit is bringing up memories of 2004.
As a reminder, here's the last famous thing Dean did in Iowa:
Dean is apparently "open" to another shot at the campaign trail, but the former Vermont governor's trip will focus on winning House and Senate seats for Democrats. The New York Times, who first reported Dean's trip, notes that his speech is part of the “Purple to Blue” campaign that focuses on congressional victories. But aides for Dean's Democracy for America can't seem to stop dropping hints that the speech indicates something bigger: "This isn’t the last you’ll be hearing of Dean and Democracy for America in Iowa leading up to 2016,” one aide told the Times. Politico's unnamed source described Dean's ambitions thusly:
"He’s also going to spend time talking about the progressive values that…any candidate who runs in 2016 is going to have to have and is going to have to show that they are fighting for..So in addition to talking about the ‘Purple to Blue’ program and what that means and how that focus on state house races can change and empower progressive Democrats across the country, he definitely will be talking about national subjects as well.”
Dean's said a few months ago that his presidential ambitions depend on whether he's "satisfied" with the other candidates in the field. And his opinion on Clinton is mixed: Dean thinks the potential candidate would prompt a challenge from a more progressive candidate.