I know there were a bunch of GOP primaries yesterday, but I hold no hope for those bunch of misfits. I was focused on a Democratic primary in Ohio where, I believe, the GOP targeted Dennis Kucinich for removal from office via redistricting. The GOP won that battle, unfortunately. For the first time in a while, Kucinich had to run in a primary against fellow Democrat Marcy Kaptur. He lost. Make absolutely no mistake about it: The loss of Dennis Kucinich is as deep a loss as Ted Kennedy’s seat going to Scott Brown, and losing progressive Russ Feingold in the senate in 2012. Kucinich was a voice of reason, and a tireless champion for progressive causes. It’s not just the state of Ohio that took a hit by losing Dennis Kucinich. It’s every progressive in these United States. Don’t expect Kaptur to take up the Dennis Kucinich mantra. Marcy Kaptur may be a Democrat, but she is not progressive.
Kucinich unequivocally supports same-sex marriage; Kaptur does not. Kucinich is pro-choice; Kaptur is not. Kucinich is pro-environment and a believer in climate change; Kaptur is not. Kucinich was against the Iraq war from the start and voted against continual funding of the war every time the issue came up; Kaptur not only continuously voted to fund the war but she also took nearly a quarter of a million dollars in campaign funding from war contractors. Kucinich tried to strengthen ObamaCare; Kaptur held it up over abortion language. The only thing that Dennis Kucinich and Marcy Kaptur have in common is that they both represent Ohio and their last names start with “K.”
Prior to Tuesday’s Ohio primary, I posted an article on Veracity Stew called “The Man Who Should Be President.” I am now posting this article here.
The Man Who Should Be President
I’m aware of the fact that Dennis Kucinich doesn’t have a chance in hell of being elected President of the United States. He can’t be bought by the corporations and the banks, so no super PAK money is coming his way anytime soon. In this country, if you don’t have millions of dollars in your coffers before the serious campaigning even starts, you don’t get elected. Do the math. The American public is the other reason. I hear all the time that Kucinich is “out there.” Really? To me, he’s the only American politician who “gets any of it.” As voters, we’re as much the problem as the solution. We like our politicians neat and tidy and glamorous and marketable. Like Barack Obama. We like double speak because that’s what we’ve been fed for years. We don’t mind if our politicians ‘talk around’ the issues rather than ‘speak to’ the issues. That’s none of what Dennis Kucinich is all about. What you have is a guy who says it like it is, even if you’d rather have it sugarcoated. Even more refreshing, Kucinich actually takes positions on issues and lets you know about them. That’s exactly the kind of leader America needs.
I have one very vivid memory of Dennis Kucinch from the 2008 campaign. He appeared on a CNN debate with Anderson Cooper, who actually had guests ask questions. Two lesbians asked if the candidates would allow them to be married. Everyone danced around the question in typical political style. Then Senator Chris Dodd (who supported DOMA) stated his belief that marriage is reserved for one man and one woman, advocating for civil unions. Bill Richardson pledged to do “what is achievable.” That translated to civil unions. Only one said “yes” to same-sex marriage without hesitation, and that was Dennis Kucinich. And that position was the same in 2008 as it was when he ran in 2004. In fact, back in 2003, Kucinich called the issue of same-sex marriage “a fundamental civil rights issue…that shouldn’t even be a close question.” Unlike our current president whose views on same-sex marriage are “evolving,” Dennis Kucinich’s view is fully evolved.
America has become a country where its citizens accept corrupt backdoor agreements as a matter of course, shrugging their shoulders and attributing such things to ‘politics as usual.’ It’s now a well-known fact that Barack Obama made such an agreement with the Bush administration, promising to neither investigate nor pursue charges against former members of the Bush administration for war crimes. Obama also played a key role in preventing Spain from prosecuting the Bush administration. Dennis Kucinich, on the other hand, fought to bring 35 articles of impeachment to the floor of the House while George W. Bush was still a sitting president.
Kucinich has been the most vocal anti-war member of Congress. Not only did Dennis Kucinich vote against the Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Iraq Resolution of 2002, which started the Iraq war, he has consistently voted against funding and escalation of the war. He has also consistently voted against the U.S.A. Patriot Act. In December of last year, he addressed Congress about the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), stating:
“This legislation authorizes the military to indefinitely detain individuals without charge or trial, including the detention of U.S. citizens on U.S. soil. In short, what this bill does is it takes a wrecking ball to the United States Constitution and gives enormous power to the government or the state. I want friends on both sides of the aisle to understand this; we are giving the state more power over individuals with this bill. It’s the wrong direction.”
Kucinich is now speaking out against any intervention in Iran, noting that the media coverage and inaccuracies being reported by the media mirror the lead-up to the war in Iraq. He voted against the Comprehensive Iran Sanctions, Accountability, and Divestment Act. When an American drone under the control of the CIA was shot down over Iranian air space in December of last year, Kucinich warned that,“The United States has no right to violate Iranian airspace; doing so would be a violation of international law and a serious provocation.” His interview on the subject is the most lucid I’ve encountered so far on the topic of war with Iran. Don’t miss it.
I voted for Dennis Kucinich in both 2004 and 2008. After the primaries, I wrote him in. I’d happily vote for him again if he were running in 2012. The scary thing is that we could lose the progressive voice of Kucinich in the House, and this is by design. The GOP targeted Kucinich for removal, and he is now being forced into a primary battle due to redistricting in Ohio. As I wrote in an earlier article, keeping Dennis Kucinich in the House is as critical a battle as making Elizabeth Warren the next senator from Massachusetts.
Writer’s Note: I have just read that Representative Kucinich is considering taking up residency in Washington state as there is a June filing deadline for a new congressional seat in the Seattle area. I, for one, hope he does.