Gov. Dean is the only Democrat running for President to have received an "A" rating from the NRA. Dean's position on sensible gun laws should merit the NRA's endorsement of him for the democratic nomination. If the NRA, and it's 5 million plus members, were to endorse Dean it would bring a windfall of support. As Gov. Dean says, there are many people who have been voting Republican for the past 50 years - what do they have to show for it? Their children don't have health insurance either. If the gun control issue was a non-issue in the 2004 election, many NRA voters would then feel as though they could make a choice that would ACTUALLY benefit them and their families.
It is important to note that this article is written by a Dean advocate, and that the NRA's "A" rating comes despite Dean's support for the Brady Bill, the Assault WeaponsBan, and "closing the gun show loophole". Dean is certainly trying to portray himself favorably to gun owners; whether this is accurate is something else altogether.