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The Dartmouth
May 21, 2024 | Latest Issue
The Dartmouth

Kucinich urges Bush impeachment

Rep. Dennis Kucinich, D-Ohio, greets a young
Rep. Dennis Kucinich, D-Ohio, greets a young

On the website Democracy for New Hampshire, one of the event's sponsors, the teach-in is described as an educational forum to relay the general history and structure of impeachment. The content of the evening consisted mainly of reasons why the panelists believed that Bush and Cheney have violated the Constitution, and the event served as a forum for citizens to voice their discontent with the current administration.

A banner which proclaimed in red capital letters "Impeach Bush and Cheney" hung over the panel. Representatives of the sponsor organizations handed out bumper stickers and orange bracelets stamped with the same message and "impeach-mint" peppermints. Some audience members arrived wearing buttons or stickers calling for the president's impeachment, and others donned them as soon as they arrived.

Kucinich spoke towards the end of the program, emphasizing his perception that the situation was urgent.

"It is all on the line today," Kucinich said. "Our democracy is in danger."

Fellow panelist Tim Carpenter, of the Progressive Democrats of America, said that the nation is in the midst of a "constitutional crisis," for which U.S. Army veteran Adrienne Kinne said that the American people should hold the government accountable "by whatever means necessary."

Members of the audience responded to these statements with cheers and applause and offered impassioned interjections like "Discharge Pelosi" when they felt particularly impassioned.During the question-and-answer session that followed the presentation, one audience member, Bruce Marshall, said that the only alternative to impeachment or a court marshall would be World War III.

One of the students in attendance, Casey Lauderdale '09, said she came because she is a Kucinich supporter and was a little surprised by the tenor of the meeting.

"These kinds of things could be good if there weren't the extremists to discredit it," Lauderdale said.

Kucinich said that he committed himself to the issue of impeachment after he read the Defense Budget. He said it called for $10 million for retrofitting B2 stealth bombers that could drop bunker-buster bombs on nuclear research facilities in Iran. Kucinich believes that the administration is creating a situation that will lead to a war with Iran and said he wants to remove Bush and Cheney from office before they have the opportunity to do so.

Invoking the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, which he said he reads often, Kucinich criticized the Patriot Act and other similar measures. With the approval of House Resolution 1955, Kucinich said that Congress, which in his opinion is perpetuating the errors of the executive branch, is "trying to criminalize thought."

Audience members who approved of the presentation registered their appreciation of the statements given by the panelists in statements made to The Dartmouth following the event.

"I'm just totally impressed with him, and it is crucial to bring to light this cause," said Mass. resident Carl Doerner, speaking of panelist John Nichols.

Laura Simon of Wilder, Vt. said that she was happy that Kucinich visited New Hampshire and that while she did not learn anything new, the evening reinforced most of her opinions.

"It's really weird that people can't stand up for anything," Simon said.

During the visit, Kucinich also stopped at the Dartmouth Bookstore to sign copies of his autobiography, "The Courage to Survive," which recounts the circumstances of his childhood among other stories. The eldest of seven children, Kucinich read a passage about his family living out of a car when it could not afford to pay the rent.

He also answered questions about his policies, quoting hip hop crossover artist Michael Franti.

"You can bomb the world to pieces, but you can't bomb it into peace," Kucinich said.

Approximately 20 people came to the book signing.

Sanjay Setch, an intern with the campaign, noted that other events had larger turnouts. He said that Kucinich has recently toured with singer Ani DiFranco and made on-stage appearances. Setch said that after a concert in Asheville, N.C., over 1,000 volunteers joined the campaign.

Kucinich's political career started in 1977, when he was elected mayor of Cleveland, Ohio. He is running on a platform of "Strength Through Peace."