The Jan. 12th issue of the Samoa News in Pago Pago, American Samoa published Gov. Dean's comments made in response to a direct question at a press conference Friday morning about media reports that he had "clashed" with Obama advisors and was asked not to attend the new conference on Wednesday where President-Elect Obama introduced Gov. Kaine as the new DNC Chair. This was Gov. Dean's response:(link will work for a few more hours)
"As far as I know, it's not true. I have not clashed with Obama's advisors."
According the the report, Dean noted that he did clash with one of Obama's advisors but it occurred before the person became an advisor to Obama. He also said it would be very hard to change a trip to American Samoa for a press conference.
"You know, people like to say those kinds of things just to stir things up," Dean said. "I'm not interested in stirring things up. We have a lot of important problems in front of us and we need to deal with that...not gossip and the internet."
Gov. Dean also said that he didn't know if he was invited to the news conference because he was on his way to American Samoa when it happened.
While I would very much like to see Gov. Dean with a prominent role in the new administration, I am willing to accept his statement that he missed the news conference because of a long-planned and very long trip to American Samoa. "Taking a later flight" so he could attend the news conference wasn't really an option because the "later flight" from Honolulu to Pago Pago leaves three days later (two flights a week, Thursday and Sunday, connecting Samoa to Hawaii).