It makes sense to do that. What surprised me was that the party decided to include in the release several Dean quotes from 2003. See if you can pick the moment where I thought "Ooooh. That's not a good idea." From the release:
What Howard Dean Really Thinks About the South In His Own Words
“White folks in the South who drive pick-up trucks with Confederate flag decals in the back ought to be voting with us, not them because their kids don’t have health insurance, either, and their kids need better schools, too!”
(CNN’s “Crossfire,” 2/21/03)
“[P]eople who vote who fly the Confederate flag, I think they are wrong, because I think the Confederate flag is a racist symbol. But I think there are lot of poor people who fly that flag because the Republicans have been dividing us by race since 1968, with their Southern race strategy.”
(CNN/Rock The Vote Democrat Presidential Candidate Forum, Boston, MA, 11/4/03)
Forgetting, for a moment, some of Sen. John McCain's own comments about the Confederate flag, I question the logic of injecting the flag into this, or any, contest. It's the kind of thing that can backfire.
For example: After reading the release I emailed Ben Fry, the Georgia GOP's executive director, and asked what the Republican Party considers the Confederate flag to be a symbol of. I haven't heard back.
By the way, if you can find me some Confederate flag lovers who were voting for Barack Obama before the GOP reminded them of Dean's stance on the flag, I'd like to meet them.