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Inside Politics

Dean shakes up campaign staff

Campaign manager Joe Trippi replaced by Gore operative

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BURLINGTON, Vermont (CNN) -- After suffering losses in Iowa and New Hampshire, former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean shook up his campaign Wednesday, replacing his campaign manager with a longtime aide to Al Gore.

Roy Neel, who was Gore's chief of staff when he was a senator and vice president, will be the new chief operating officer, running the day-to-day efforts of the campaign, a spokeswoman said.

Neel's appointment prompted the departure of Joe Trippi, the campaign manager credited with bringing Dean from an asterisk in the polls to front-runner status before his campaign stumbled in Iowa and New Hampshire.

Sources said Trippi was offered a different role in the campaign's media operation but opted to leave. He is returning to Washington after what was described as a "tearful" meeting with the staff.

Neel, who joined the Dean campaign as a senior adviser January 1, also served as deputy chief of staff in the Clinton White House and was Gore's campaign manager in his 1992 vice presidential run, according to the Dean campaign Web site.

Gore, who lost to President Bush as the Democratic nominee in the 2000 election, endorsed Dean in early December.

Earlier in the day, Dean had said he did not plan to fire anybody.

"'I'm not asking anybody to leave. There may be some additions, but nobody's leaving. At least I hope they're not leaving," he said.

The Dean campaign, which has raised more money than any other Democratic campaign and opted out of public financing, may also be having money problems.

Sources told CNN that staffers have been warned that they could be facing pay cuts.

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