Damning With Faint Praise

A short piece in the Village Voice describes how Democrats are having a hard time getting...excited...about Howard Dean's impending coronation as DNC chair...

Democratic pols are trying to get it up for Howard Dean, but they are very confused when the former Vermont governor and presidential candidate says he "admires" Newt Gingrich more than Bill Clinton, and that Christian-right big Ralph Reed "created a real success" with the right, and how "Clinton led the Dems into complacency and defeat."
Check out these stellar endorsements from big names in the party.

Nancy Pelosi: "We look forward to whoever the members of the DNC choose."

Joe Lieberman: "He wasn't my first choice....if it's Howard, I'll go along."

John Kerry: "He's going to be a spokesman in certain ways. Obviously the chairman has to go to the Jefferson-Jackson dinners and other things."

Then there's this piece in The Hill, where House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) suggests that Dean not talk about policy matters.
“I don’t believe it is the party chair’s role to set the policy of the party. That is the role of the elected officials,” Hoyer told reporters yesterday.

“I think his job as party chairman is to ensure the party is organized well and ready to, in every district, contest the Republicans, every congressional district in America, every county and state and city in America, and that we raise sufficient finances to compete effectively.”

Acknowledging that he had some policy disagreements with the former presidential candidate, Hoyer nevertheless congratulated Dean on his impending election.
The excitement is palpable.