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Howard Dean comments on potential run for governor

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BURLINGTON, Vt. (WCAX) – Howard Dean is sounding more like a candidate for governor, though he is still not officially running.

As WCAX News first reported last week, Vermont’s longest-serving governor is considering running again more than two decades after leaving office.

In an email to reporters on Wednesday, Dean lays out what might be the foundation of his campaign– a mounting fiscal crisis in Montpelier and the inability of the Democratic Legislature and Republican Gov. Phil Scott to work together to solve it.

Dean said, in part, “I believe Vermont is in real danger of losing much we have fought for and much of what we have accomplished, in the atmosphere of anger and disrespect which permeates Montpelier.”

But Dean stops short of declaring his candidacy, saying he will hold a press event when and if he decides to run.

Gov. Phil Scott is widely expected to seek a fifth two-year term in office. A national poll recently ranked Scott as the most popular governor in the country. He was reelected in 2022 with 71% of the vote.

Dean was a popular governor, too. He served from 1991 to 2003, making him the longest-serving governor in Vermont history. He rose to office from lieutenant governor following the death of Richard Snelling. After serving the remainder of Snelling’s term, Dean went on to win five more terms.

In 2004, Dean ran for president. But after a third-place finish in the Iowa causes, his campaign foundered and John Kerry went on to win the Democratic nomination. But Dean did not disappear from national politics. He remained a regular on primetime TV news shows and in 2005 was elected chairman of the Democratic National Committee.

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