LCB: You’ve covered the last five presidential elections. What’s your favorite campaign memento or most treasured piece of swag you’ve received over the years?

JL: Actually it might be something I got during this campaign while I was up in Vermont doing research on [Howard] Dean. One of the legislators he tangled with gave me a picture of [Dean] as governor screaming at him with his finger pushed into the guy’s chest. We used it in our paper. I have the picture up on my wall at work.

While I was up in Vermont, in October, at the end of every interview I’d ask, “So have you ever seen [Dean] lose his temper? Everyone always said he had a temper, and we’d seen some evidence of it. My question was whether it was refreshing or a sign of something more serious. What I was trying to do was see if it was temper or temperament. I wrote a story in November that looked at that whole issue. People who knew [Dean] in Vermont thought he was fine, but they understood how he was coming across and that how in a national race people wouldn’t get to know him as they had. They were a little worried.

Liz Cox Barrett

Liz Cox Barrett is a writer at CJR.