Larry King Live
Des Moines, IA, January 19, 2004
GUESTS: Bob Woodward, Bob Dole, Howard Dean, John Edwards, Joe Lieberman, Wesley Clark
BYLINE: Larry King, Wolf Blitzer
Analysis of 2004 Iowa caucus results.
LARRY KING, HOST: We're about 90 minutes into the Iowa caucuses. Democratic voters are finally having their say on who their party's presidential pick should be. We're going to do two shows tonight, we'll be back live at midnight Eastern, 9 o'clock Pacific.
Ahead in this hour, we'll be hearing from the Democratic presidential hopefuls in Iowa and New Hampshire. We'll be getting perspective from Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and best-selling author, Bob Woodward of “The Washington Post.” Plus Bob Dole, the Republican presidential nominee in 1996 who won the GOP Iowa caucuses in both 1988 and 1996. And of course, our guy in Des Moines, CNN's Wolf Blitzer.
We understand, though, we can start right with Howard Dean, one of the candidates in the Des Moines election going on right now. There is Mr. Dean. We have early results in that, Howard, that has you third. Is that too early?
HOWARD DEAN (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Well, I think Senator Kerry is doing very well and so is Senator Edwards. I want to congratulate them both, but we're determined to win. We're determined in the end to win the nomination. We have got a 50-state organization and we're going to go on. I'm delighted to finish in the top three, which is so-so-I guess, you know, they say that if you're in the top three, you get winnowed in, so I guess we got winnowed in. And certainly we would have liked to have done better, but we worked hard, we got a lot of great people working for us, and on to New Hampshire.
KING: Are you saying, Howard, that you are going to finish third?
DEAN: I can't tell where we're going to finish yet, but the early numbers look like Senator Kerry will win it. And I certainly want to congratulate him and Senator Edwards for great campaigns, and now by 2:00 this morning we'll be in New Hampshire and we'll be trying to win the New Hampshire primary.
KING: If Congressman Gephardt finishes fourth, do you think he will leave the race?
DEAN: Well, I don't know. You'll be talking to him a little later, and I'm sure you can ask...
DEAN: ... him that one yourself. You know, we're just glad to get our ticket punched from Iowa. I think the people of Iowa are great. It was a terrific experience for us. I hope to be back in the general election trying to beat George Bush.
KING: Governor, has to be asked. What went wrong? Based on the polls, you were way ahead for a time. What happened?
DEAN: Well, that was the problem, we were way ahead, and when you're way ahead people decide you're the target, and we were pretty much the target of everybody for a long time, and it was hard to sustain that. But we did sustain it, and we got our ticket punched in New Hampshire and that's what matters.
KING: OK, because the early, I think we have about 37 percent in, Kerry gets 37 percent, 33 percent, 18 percent for you, and 11 percent for Gephardt. If it stays that low, you would be very disappointed, wouldn't you?
DEAN: No, we're happy to get our-we're happy to be on our way to New Hampshire, and then down to South Carolina, Oklahoma and New Mexico. We got a huge base, we've raised a lot of money in small donations. That's the way campaigns should be run in this country, and we're still going to stand up, and we believe that Democrats will want to be Democrats again and that's why we're running.
KING: Will tactics change in New Hampshire with a week to go?
DEAN: Oh, I can't tell you that. I can't tell you that. We'll find out when we get there.
KING: Wolf Blitzer has a question, Wolf?
WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: Governor Dean, thanks very much. What do you make of the surge, apparent surge that General Wesley Clark is making in New Hampshire, the next stop on your road?
DEAN: Well, I think when we get there, which I'm going to do in about four hours, things will be mixed up quite a lot. And we don't know who will be surging and who won't. I think things will shift around some as a result of all of this, but you know, I'm looking forward to the primary. You know, it's a new day, a new state. We want health insurance for every single American, we want to stand up and be proud to be Democrats again, that's what we're going to do and we're going to try to win New Hampshire.
KING: So you're not using the word “disappointed” tonight?
DEAN: No. Look, if you had told me a year ago that I was going to finish third in Iowa, I would have been delighted. And it's been a tough campaign. We've taken a lot of punches, not only from our opponents but from the media. And we've stood up to them. We came in third. I think it's great. On to New Hampshire.
KING: Thanks very much, Governor. We'll be seeing you next week in New Hampshire, same time, same place.
DEAN: Yes, you will.
KING: Good luck.
DEAN: Thanks, Larry.
KING: Governor Howard Dean, pretty much accepting the fact that he's going to finish third. And before we talk with Bob Woodward, Senator Dole, first our condolences on the death of your mother-in- law. She had a long life.
Content and programming Copyright 2004 Cable News Network Transcribed under license by FDCH e-Media, Inc.