Kucinich19 Aug 2003
Some brief observations about things people are saying about Dennis Kucinich, and his campaign for president.
Dennis Kucinich is unelectable.
Granted. Kucinich is probably unelectable, yes. This doesn't mean he doesn't deserve support.
Kucinich is too ideological. He couldn't run the country. He couldn't make the necessary compromises
This is quite an insult, considering who is running the country at the moment. Kucinich is ideological, but he's also a politician. He's already proven he is capable of doing that job. Ideology has become a dirty word in our lexicon these days, but let's not forget that ideology isn't necessarily bad. Being blinded by ideology is bad. There was a time when we elected presidents because they stood for something. And now we're going to dismiss someone because he is willing and able to take a stand?
Kucinich flip-flopped on abortion.
"This isn't something that I arrived at overnight," said Kucinich, who is methodical in his approach to every issue, from war in Iraq to his opposition to genetically modified foods.
"I don't believe in abortions, few do," he said. "I do, however, believe in choice."
I am not so cynical that I can't give him the benefit of the doubt. Kucinich has sacrificed his political career for his ideology before. (See this post by Kucinich on Lessig's blog discussing his battles with power deregulation in Cleveland, for an example.) I don't think he would take this stance if he hadn't honestly arrived at this conclusion.
If I am wrong, and he is merely being politically opportunistic, then so be it. So what? If, hypothetically, he gets elected, and flip-flops yet again, he'd have hell to pay. But in the grand scheme of things, abortion is a small slice of the political pie. I'd take a pro-life, but otherwise progressive liberal Kucinich in office over a decidedly moderate centrist Howard Dean.