On Tuesday, Al Gore announced his support for Howard Dean in the 2004 presidential election. In 1992, Deborah Gore Dean was indicted as part of a Reagan-era scandal at the Department of Housing and Urban Development. Is she related to either politician? Both? Did Gore’s endorsement of Dean constitute a favor for kin?
Yes, no, and nope.
Deborah Gore Dean is Al Gore’s second cousin. She was sentenced to 21 months in jail in 1993 for dishing out federal contracts to friends as part of a HUD influence-peddling scheme, but she never did any time. She now owns Gore Dean antiques in Georgetown. Deborah Gore Dean’s mother, Mary Gore Dean, also knows from scandal: She was the longtime companion of Nixon attorney general and Watergate convict John Mitchell.
The Deborah Gore Deans and the Howard Deans share no bloodlines; the two clans sprang up on opposite coasts. For generations, Howard’s relatives have lived in the Northeast, where many Dean men attended Yale and later lived on Park Avenue. Deborah’s family, at least the Dean part of it, hails from California and Washington state.
Bonus no relation: Though Howard Dean’s father once worked for Dean Witter (now Morgan Stanley Dean Witter), there’s no kinship there, either. The Dean in Dean Witter isn’t even a surname: It’s the given name of the man who co-founded the brokerage house in 1924 with his brother Guy Witter, cousins Jean and Ed Witter, and brother-in-law Fritz Janney.
Bonus bonus no relation: A partial list of other people with whom Howard Dean claims no shared ancestry: rebel icon James Dean, country musician and sausage shill Jimmy Dean, baseball Hall of Famer Dizzy Dean, and Nixon White House counsel and Watergate whistleblower John Dean.
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