Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Dennis John Kucinich (born October 8, 1946) is an American politician of the Democratic party and a candidate for President of the United States in both 2004 and 2008.
Kucinich currently represents the 10th District of Ohio in the United States House of Representatives. His district includes most of western Cleveland, as well as such suburbs as Parma and Cuyahoga Heights. He is currently the chairman of the Domestic Policy Subcommittee of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.
From 1977 to 1979, Kucinich served as the 53rd mayor of Cleveland, Ohio, a tumultuous term in which he survived a recall election and was successful in a battle against selling the municipal electric utility before being defeated for reelection by George V. Voinovich in 1979.

Personal details
Kucinich's political career began early. After running unsuccessfully in 1967, Kucinich was elected to the Cleveland City Council in 1969, when he was 23.

Early career

Main article: Mayoral administration of Dennis Kucinich Cleveland Mayorativity, 1977–1979
After losing his re-election bid for Mayor to George Voinovich in 1979, Kucinich kept a low-profile in Cleveland politics. He criticized a tax referendum proposed by Voinovich in 1980, which voters eventually approved. He also struggled to find employment and moved to Los Angeles, California where he stayed with a friend, actress Shirley MacLaine. "He was in political Siberia in the 1980s," said Joseph Tegreene years later. "It was only when it became clear to people that he was right... he got belated recognition for the things that he did."

In 1996, Kucinich was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives, representing the 10th district of Ohio. He defeated two-term Republican incumbent Martin Hoke in what is still regarded as an upset given the 10th's historic Republican lean; however, he has not faced serious opposition since.
He serves on the Congressional Education and Labor Committee as well as the Government Reform Committee. He is a member of the Congressional Progressive Caucus and is a self-described "Wellstone Democrat."

House of Representatives

Main article: Political positions of Dennis Kucinich Domestic policy voting record
Kucinich has criticized the foreign policy of President Bush, including the 2003 invasion of Iraq and what Kucinich perceives to be building American hostility towards Iran. Kucinich and Ron Paul are the only candidates who voted against the 2003 invasion of Iraq. He has since voted against funding it 100% of the time. In 2005, Kucinich voted against the Iran Freedom and Support Act, calling it a "stepping stone to war."

2004 presidential campaign
On December 10, 2003, the American Broadcasting Company (ABC) announced the removal of its correspondents from the campaigns of Kucinich, Carol Moseley Braun and Al Sharpton.

Press coverage
In the 2004 Democratic presidential nomination race, national polls consistently showed Kucinich's support in single digits, but rising, especially as Howard Dean lost some support among peace activists for refusing to commit to cutting the Pentagon budget. Though he was not viewed as a viable contender by most, there were differing polls on Kucinich's popularity.
He placed second in MoveOn.org's primary, behind Dean. He also placed first in other polls, particularly Internet-based ones. This led many activists to believe that his showing in the primaries might be better than what Gallup polls had been saying. However, in the non-binding Washington, D.C. primary, Kucinich finished fourth (last out of candidates listed on the ballot), with only eight percent of the vote. Support for Kucinich was most prevalent in the caucuses around the country.
In the Iowa caucuses he finished fifth, receiving about one percent of the state delegates from Iowa; far below the 15% threshold for receiving national delegates. He performed similarly in the New Hampshire primary, placing sixth among the seven candidates with 1% of the vote. In the Mini-Tuesday primaries Kucinich finished near the bottom in most states, with his best performance in New Mexico where he received less than six percent of the vote, and still no delegates. Kucinich's best showing in any Democratic contest was in the February 24 Hawaii caucus, in which he won 31% of caucus participants, coming in second place to Senator John Kerry of Massachusetts. He also saw a double-digit showing in Maine on February 8, where he got 16% in that state's caucus.
On Super Tuesday, March 2, Kucinich gained another strong showing with the Minnesota caucus, where 17% of the ballots went to him. In his home state of Ohio, he gained nine percent in the primary.
Kucinich campaigned heavily in Oregon, spending thirty days there during the two months leading up to the state's May 18 primary. He continued his campaign because "the future direction of the Democratic Party has not yet been determined" He won 16% of the vote.
Even after Kerry won enough delegates to secure the nomination, Kucinich continued to campaign up until just before the convention, citing an effort to help shape the agenda of the Democratic party. He was the last candidate to end his campaign, mere days before the start of the convention.

Polls and primaries

Main article: Political positions of Dennis Kucinich 2008 Presidential campaign
On 8 January, 2007 Dennis Kucinich unveiled his comprehensive exit plan to bring the troops home and stabilize Iraq.

Announce that the US will end the occupation, close the military bases, and withdraw.
Announce that existing funds will be used to bring the troops and the necessary equipment home.
Order a simultaneous return of all U.S. contractors to the United States and turn over the contracting work to the Iraqi government
Convene a regional conference for the purpose of developing a security and stabilization force for Iraq.
Prepare an international security peacekeeping force to move in, replacing U.S. troops, who then return home.
Develop and fund a process of national reconciliation.
Restart programs for reconstruction and creating jobs for the Iraqi people.
Provide reparations for the damage that has been done to the lives of Iraqis.
Assure the political sovereignty of Iraq and insure that their oil isn't stolen.
Repair the Iraqi economy.
Guarantee economic sovereignty for Iraq
Commence an international truth and reconciliation process, which establishes a policy of truth and reconciliation between the people of the United States and Iraq. The Kucinich Plan For Iraq
Kucinich has always been easily reelected to Congress, though Republicans and conservative Democrats have made increasingly high-profile attempts to challenge him. In the 2004 primary election, Kucinich was renominated for the seat representing Ohio's 10th congressional district.
Democratic party primary election results:
In the general election, the result was:
Kucinich defeated Republican candidate Ed Herman. Because of Kucinich's national fame, both candidates received much backing by their parties from outside the district, particularly on the Internet.
In 2006, Kucinich defeated another Democratic primary challenger by a wide margin, and defeated Republican Mike Dovilla in the general election with 66% of the vote, despite last-minute Republican attempts to bring more support to Dovilla.

Congressional campaigns
In 2003, Kucinich was the recipient of the Gandhi Peace Award, an annual award bestowed by the Religious Society of Friends-affiliated organization Promoting Enduring Peace.

Kucinich introduced the first Space Preservation Act on October 2, 2001, with no cosponsors. The bill was referred to the House Science, the House Armed Services, and the House International Relations committees. The bill died in committee (April 9, 2002) because of an unfavorable executive comment received from the Department of Defense.

Space Preservation Act of 2001
On April 17, 2007, Kucinich sent a letter to his Democratic colleagues saying that he planned to file impeachment proceedings against Dick Cheney, the vice president of the United States, without specifying the charges to be brought. Six of these are members of the House Judiciary Committee: Tammy Baldwin, Keith Ellison, Hank Johnson, Maxine Waters, Steve Cohen and Sheila Jackson-Lee.

Impeachment proceedings against Dick Cheney
Kucinich has been a vocal opponent of the H1B and L1 visa programs. In an article on his campaign website, he states:
The expanded use of H-1B and L-1 visas has had a negative effect on the workplace of Information Technology workers in America. It has caused a reduction in wages. It has forced workers to accept deteriorating working conditions and allowed U.S. companies to concentrate work in technical and geographic areas that American workers consider undesirable. It has also reduced the number of IT jobs held by Americans.

Opposition to H1B/L1 Visa Programs
In the aftermath of the Virginia Tech massacre in Blacksburg, Virginia, Kucinich proposed a plan that he says will address violence in America. Kucinich is currently drafting legislation that includes a ban on the purchase, sale, transfer, or possession of handguns by civilians.

Dennis Kucinich Plan to ban handguns
Kucinich is also involved in efforts to bring back the Fairness Doctrine, requiring radio stations to give liberal and conservative points of view equal time, which he and other critics of talk radio claim is not presently the case. He is joined in this effort by fellow Democrat Maurice Hichney, among others, as well as independent Senator Bernie Sanders.

Animal rights

Comparison of 2008 presidential candidates

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