“AP Interview: Howard Dean Looks Back”

It’s hard to read this long interview with Howard Dean, looking back on his own campaign, and not feel sad about what might have been.

One of Howard Dean’s most poignant memories of his presidential campaign is of a woman in a wheelchair who gave him $50 in quarters at a breakfast meeting in Iowa last summer. The money came from her federal supplemental income check.

“Even now I can hardly tell that story,” says Dean, his voice choking in a rare display of emotion.

“She said she had been saving the quarters for two years, when she could, for something that was really important – and this was really important to her.”…

“I am pretty overwhelmed,” he says and pauses as his eyes brim with tears.

“I don’t really feel I let them down, I must say, but I am pretty shocked by not just how supportive they were, but what they were willing to do.”

It was an amazing ride and Dean is the first to admit it. “Since the campaign ended I have just looked back and scratched my head and said, `What could you have been thinking of? You started out in a room over a chiropractor’s office and you thought you were going to be president of the United States?'”