Howard Dean Endorses Sue Minter for Governor | Off Message

Howard Dean Endorses Sue Minter for Governor

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Former governor Howard Dean addresses Vermont delegates to the Democratic National Convention Tuesday in Philadelphia. - PAUL HEINTZ
  • Paul Heintz
  • Former governor Howard Dean addresses Vermont delegates to the Democratic National Convention Tuesday in Philadelphia.
One of the state's most prominent Democrats, former governor Howard Dean, said Thursday he is endorsing Sue Minter for the job he once held. 

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"I think she's really smart. I think she's not afraid to make a tough decision. I think she's had an executive role in state government. And I think she's most likely to beat Phil Scott, who I really like," Dean said, referring to the Republican lieutenant governor and gubernatorial candidate. "I like Matt Dunne very much, too."

Minter, a former transportation secretary, is locked in what's widely regarded as a tight race for the Democratic nomination with Dunne, a former state senator. Another former state senator, Peter Galbraith, is also in the race.

"He's very, very smart," Dean said of Galbraith. "But he's a little abrasive."

Dean disclosed his endorsement in an interview with Seven Days at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in Philadelphia, where he was taking part in events related to the Democratic National Convention. It was a familiar environment for the 2004 presidential candidate, who helped plan the 2008 convention when he served as chair of the Democratic National Committee.
Democratic gubernatorial candidate Sue Minter - JEB WALLACE-BRODEUR
  • Jeb Wallace-brodeur
  • Democratic gubernatorial candidate Sue Minter
The decision to endorse didn't come easily to Dean.

"I thought really hard, because I don't normally do this and haven't done it for a long, long time — if ever — since I've been governor," he said. "But I do think Sue's got the whole package. I think she's not afraid to do the things that have to be done."

Dean called the decision "painful," because he has known Dunne and Scott far longer than Minter. Both served in the legislature when he was governor.

"I watched her for a long time, because I wasn't sure she was ready for prime time," Dean said. "But she is."


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