Nominee Apparent

Nora Ephron, director: “Howard Dean has confounded every bit of conventional wisdom since he got into this thing. My money’s on him.”

Douglas E. Schoen, Lieberman strategist: “Any Democrat can beat Bush.”

Jonah Goldberg, columnist, National Review: “Dean reminds me of the sort of arrogant middlebrow liberal who owns an independent bookstore and yells at you for buying the ‘wrong’ books. He has Al Gore’s charm and Bill Clinton’s affinity for self- congratulation.”

Ann Richards, ex-governor: “No doubt in my mind.”

Chris Matthews, host of MSNBC’s Hardball: “Dean and Gore have called Iraq a blunder. By November 2004, the country could agree.”

Peter Beinart, editor, The New Republic: “Don’t bet on it. Dean’s too secular to connect with churchgoing swing voters. With the GOP demagoguing gay marriage, it could be fatal.”

George McGovern, U.N. global ambassador for hunger: “People say Dean is another George McGovern, but the biggest problem I had was George Wallace. If he hadn’t been shot before the election, he would have run as an independent and taken the South and 20 million votes away from Nixon. And under those conditions, I might have won.”

Nominee Apparent