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Howard Dean doesn't close door to 2016 race

8:41 AM, Jun 21, 2013   |    comments
Howard Dean
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Catalina Camia, USA TODAY

Howard Dean for president in 2016? The liberal Democrat says "never say never. "

The former Vermont governor and Democratic Party chairman told CNN that he would consider another White House bid if he doesn't feel as though the 2016 field isn't focusing adequately on the issues that he cares about. Sunday is the 10th anniversary of Dean formally entering the 2004 presidential race.

"I am not driven by my own ambition," Dean told CNN's Peter Hamby. "What I am driven by is pushing the country in a direction that it desperately needs to be pushed; pushing other politicians who aren't quite as frank as I am who need to be more candid with the American people about what needs to happen.

"I am not trying to hedge, it's a hard job running. It's really tough," Dean continued. "I am doing a lot of things I really enjoy. But you should never say never in this business."

Dean and the staffers and volunteers from his 2004 campaign are gathering in Vermont this weekend for a reunion to mark his presidential bid. He was the front-runner going into the Iowa caucuses in 2004, but finished third and eventually dropped out of the race.

In the CNN interview, Dean also said he believes Hillary Rodham Clinton -- who is leading early polls on the 2016 race -- "is not going to have a pass" if she decides to run again for president.

USA TODAY

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