Howard Dean delivered some strong words in his opening remarks at Rules and Bylaws, telling an anecdote about his bitter, hard-fought loss in 2004.
"I was very very angry at my party for some of the things that had been done," Dean said, going on to recall getting a phone call in the middle of the night from Al Gore, to whom Dean ranted and raved about his loss.
"What do I owe the Democratic Party?" Dean recalled telling Gore. "Why should I be a Democrat after what the party did to me?"
According to Dean, Gore responded: "Howard, you know, this is not about you. It's about your country."
"Nobody could have said that to me except for Al Gore," Dean continued, since Gore had had the presidency snatched from him by "five intellectually bankrupt Supreme Court justices who did the wrong thing."
"This is not about Barack Obama," Dean went on, speaking about the current primary. "This is not about Hillary Clinton. This is about our country. This is about restoring America to its greatness" and "moral authority."
"There have been very tough disagreements and ugly moments. Emotions have run very high. There have been blatantly sexist comments, particularly by some members of the media. And blatantly racist remarks. And we know that those comments have no place in our society."
"We need to come together."