He's been attacked by Rep. Patrick Kennedy (D-R.I.) for not being totally draconian regarding gun control. Sez the WashPost:
Rep. Patrick J. Kennedy (D-R.I.) scolded Democratic presidential hopeful Howard Dean for his friendly relations with the National Rifle Association during a Capitol Hill rally last week to drum up support for renewal—and strengthening—of the federal ban on assault weapons.
While other speakers stuck to the subject of assault weapons, Kennedy assailed Dean, saying he was "saddened" that one of his party's leading presidential candidates is "pro-NRA." He suggested that Dean has "compromised his principles" as a physician by opposing stronger federal gun controls.
What would a politically calculated outburst by a Kennedy be without the inevitable invocation of tragic family history? Continued the one-time cocaine and alcohol abuser:
"This is a personal issue with me, and I'm very disturbed at the fact that people are not paying attention to Dr. Dean's record" on guns, said Kennedy, nephew of President John F. Kennedy and his brother Robert, both of whom were assassinated by guns.
The Dean campaign's reply:
Dean spokeswoman Patricia Enright said Dean supports renewal of the 1994 law banning manufacture, transfer and possession of certain kinds of assault weapons but has not addressed whether the law should be strengthened, as many gun control supporters advocate. Dean has said new gun controls should be set at the state level.