DNC chairmanship election, 2005

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Chair before election

Terry McAuliffe

Elected Chair

Howard Dean

The 2005 Democratic National Committee (DNC) chairmanship election was held on February 12, 2005, to elect a chairperson to the DNC for a four-year term. Howard Dean was elected as the DNC chair, succeeding Terry McAuliffe.


Howard Dean

Following the 2004 U.S. presidential election, some Democratic Party insiders wanted Terry McAuliffe to remain DNC chair. The netroots pushed for a different leader who would move the party away from the large donors.[1] Howard Dean, a candidate for the Democratic Party nomination for president in 2004, announced his bid to become DNC chair on January 11.[2] Other candidates to declare included Former U.S. Representative Tim Roemer of Indiana,[3] former Al Gore and John Kerry staffer Donnie Fowler, Mayor of Denver Wellington Webb, New Democrat Network founder Simon Rosenberg, Former U.S. Representative Martin Frost of Texas, and Ohio Democratic Party Chair David J. Leland.[4] Kate Michelman almost ran due to Roemer's anti-abortion stance, but she opted not to run.[5][6] Harold M. Ickes also considered running, but did not.[7]

Dean became the front-runner in the race, though Roemer received the endorsements of Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi, the Democratic Party leaders in the United States Senate and United States House of Representatives, respectively.[8] Though the executive committee of the Association of State Democratic Party chairs recommended an endorsement of Fowler,[9][10] the group chose to endorse Dean on January 31. Webb dropped out and endorsed Dean.[11] On February 1, Dean announced the endorsements of 53 more members of the DNC, increasing his total number of DNC supporters to 102.[12] The AFL–CIO opted not to endorse a candidate.[13] Meanwhile, the Service Employees International Union endorsed Dean.[14] Without the support of the labor movement, Frost dropped out.[15][16] Receiving little support, Leland dropped out as well.[14]

Rosenberg dropped out on February 4 and endorsed Dean.[17] Fowler dropped out on February 5 and endorsed Dean.[18] Roemer, Dean's last challenger, dropped out on February 7.[19] Dean was elected by a voice vote on February 12.[20]

See also


  1. ^ "Another Term for McAuliffe as DNC Chair?". ABC News. January 6, 2006. Retrieved November 13, 2016.
  2. ^ "Dean announces bid for DNC chair". CNN. January 11, 2005. Retrieved November 13, 2016.
  3. ^ "Roemer Makes DNC Bid Official". Fox News Channel. January 10, 2005. Retrieved November 13, 2016.
  4. ^ Nagourney, Adam; Kornblut, Anne E. (January 30, 2005). "Seven Candidates Scramble to Lead the Party That Lost". The New York Times. Retrieved November 13, 2016.
  5. ^ "Roemer lashes out in DNC chairman race: Memo criticizes candidate's opposition to abortion rights". CNN. January 16, 2005. Retrieved November 13, 2016.
  6. ^ "Howard Dean: Back On The Cool List". CBS News. Retrieved November 13, 2016.
  7. ^ Purdum, Todd S. (February 6, 2005). "From Ashes of '04 Effort, Dean Reinvents Himself". The New York Times. Retrieved November 13, 2016.
  8. ^ Easton, Nina (January 30, 2005). "A 'stop-Dean' effort arises at DNC forum: Stakes high as party seeks new chairman". Boston Globe. Retrieved November 15, 2016.
  9. ^ Novak, Viveca A. (January 30, 2005). "Fowler 1, Dean 0". Time. Retrieved November 14, 2016.
  10. ^ "Democratic Group Backs Fowler Over Dean to Lead DNC". The Washington Post. Retrieved November 13, 2016.
  11. ^ Lester, Will (February 1, 2005). "State party chiefs back Dean: Bid for DNC post gains momentum". Boston Globe. Associated Press. Retrieved November 13, 2016.
  12. ^ Brownstein, Ronald (February 2, 2005). "Dean Advances Toward DNC's Top Post as Frost Withdraws". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved November 13, 2016.
  13. ^ "AFL-CIO won't make DNC chair endorsement". NBC News. February 1, 2005. Retrieved November 13, 2016.
  14. ^ a b Nagourney, Adam; Kornblut, Anne E. (February 2, 2005). "Dean Emerging as Likely Chief for Democrats". The New York Times. Retrieved November 13, 2016.
  15. ^ "Frost drops out of race for Democratic Party chairman". Plainview Daily Herald. Retrieved November 13, 2016.
  16. ^ "Dean Dominates DNC Chief Race". CBS News. Retrieved November 13, 2016.
  17. ^ "Rosenberg drops out of DNC race, backs Dean". USA Today. Associated Press. February 4, 2005. Retrieved November 13, 2016.
  18. ^ "Dean virtually locks up DNC chairmanship". CNN. February 5, 2005. Retrieved November 13, 2016.
  19. ^ "Dean's Last DNC Chair Rival Drops Out of Race". Fox News Channel. February 8, 2005. Retrieved November 13, 2016.
  20. ^ "Howard Dean elected to lead Democrats". NBC News. February 13, 2005. Retrieved November 13, 2016.