Are two parties enough?
Dennis Kucinich is a Democratic congressman and presidential also-ran. Kucinich graduated from Case Western Reserve University in 1973 with a BA and an MA in speech and communication. He began his political career early: he was elected to the Cleveland City Council at 23, and became mayor in 1977 at the age of 31. After spending much of the 1980's out of government, Kucinich was elected to Congress in 1996; he is currently in his sixth term. In Congress, Kucinich has a staunchly liberal and anti-war record. He is a strong advocate of national health care, clean energy, and an immediate withdrawal of American troops from Iraq. Kucinich even brought articles of impeachment against Vice-President Dick Cheney, though the bill was killed before it could reach the House floor. Kucinich first ran for president in 2004; he ran again in 2008. In 2003, he received the Gandhi Peace Award, bestowed by the Quaker organization Promoting Enduring Peace. Kucinich is the author of a memoir, The Courage to Survive, as well as a collection of speeches, A Prayer for America.
Question: Are two parties enough?
Dennis Kucinich: No. No absolutely not. I mean two . . . The two-party system is really a one-party system. You can call it the Demuplican party or the Republicrat party. Take your pick. Everyone knows I’m telling the truth about this. You know at the top . . . You know look where we are. We’re at war. Both parties have supported the war, even though the Democrats have said, “You vote Democrat and we’ll get you out of Iraq.” Right. Here we are a year later. Both parties support the oil companies. Otherwise you’d have a windfall profit tax. Both parties support the insurance companies. Otherwise you’d have a not-for-profit healthcare system. So when you look at some of the key economic issues that Americans have . . . You know both parties support these multi-national corporations. Otherwise you wouldn’t have all these jobs lost. Now the mythology is, “Well vote Democrat and your job will be protected.” No, because the Democrats brought you NAFTA and China trade. So you know you . . . My candidacy is about changing the direction of the Democratic party. It’s about having a real Democratic party as opposed to a fake version of the Democratic party. And people know that their choices are being limited. So should there be more choices? Look, I’m a green Democrat. I’m an independent Democrat. In some ways I’m a libertarian Democrat because I stand up for people’s basic constitutional rights. Don’t forget, you know, Democrats in the Senate helped pass the Patriot Act. You know one candidate for president bragged then about how he was the co-author of it. So let’s have a real difference between the parties, and let’s have a real debate. If you don’t have that, we absolutely have to have more . . . more political parties.
Recorded on: 10/19/07
"The two-party system is really a one-party system," Kucinich says.
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