In New Hampshire, which holds its primary a week after the caucuses, Gen. Wesley K. Clark has taken advantage of having the state almost to himself, as Dr. Dean tends to the tough battle in Iowa, drawing crowds that are beginning to rival the ones that typically show up to see Dr. Dean. Although Democratic strategists say they see little chance that Dr. Dean will lose New Hampshire, General Clark’s rise is threatening Dr. Dean’s once-dominant position in the state and could dash his hopes of essentially ending the contest with an overwhelming victory there.
General Clark is not competing in Iowa, and until at least Monday, when a group of Kerry supporters in Manchester challenged his Democratic credentials, escaped the attacks that have battered the Democrats who are competing here.
As he adjusted to this new terrain, Dr. Dean dropped all pretense of comity on Monday, throwing away big chunks of his stump speech and abandoning his pledge to avoid attacks on opponents. “I’m going after everybody because I’m tired of being the pin cushion here,” he said.
About that awful first paragraph excerpted above: How long has it been since Dean practiced medicine? No, really. And even if he were still practicing, wouldn’t it be better to call him “Dr. Howard Dean” on the first reference, then simply as “Dean”? The way the NYT throws honorifics around, we have to endure reading “Dr. Dean” four times in two overlong sentences. It’s a little hard on the eyes.