Gore endorses Dean in Democratic race

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(Host) Former Vice President Al Gore endorsed Howard Dean for the Democratic presidential nomination Tuesday morning. Gore said Dean is, “the only candidate who has been able to inspire at the grassroots level all over the country.”

Middlebury College political science professor Eric Davis says the Gore endorsement is a significant development for the Dean presidential campaign:

(Davis) “What it means is that former Vice President Al Gore sees Howard Dean as the front runner for the Democratic nomination and wants to add his support to Governor Dean in hopes that this will enable Dean to lock up the nomination earlier rather than later.”

(Host) Davis says the Gore endorsement will also help Dean raise money for his campaign:

(Davis) “We’re on the final three weeks of a financial quarter. The Dean campaign will want to report a very strong financial total contributions total for the October, November, December period they’re talking about $10 million, which really means they probably expect they can raise twice that much money. And this will certainly not hurt the Dean campaign’s efforts to raise the money that they need to start taking the campaign to President Bush.”

(Host) Gore made the announcement in New York.

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