Dennis J. Kucinich

Responses to CCPC's endorsement application questionnaire from:

Dennis J. Kucinich, candidate for Ohio Governor

Political Party Affiliation: Democratic Party

Previous elected offices: Councilman, Clerk of Courts, Mayor of Cleveland; State Senator; United States Congressman

Issue responses

Economic justice

I am committed to raising the minimum wage to $15, with the first big step toward $12.50. I wrote HR 676, Medicare for All and intend to bring universal health care to Ohio. I will end an inequitable tax system which accelerates wealth in Ohio to the top. I will achieve a two year, tuition free program at all public colleges and universities in Ohio during my first term, as a step to a four year tuition free program. I want the state to become more involved in funding mass transit which is experiencing reductions in service because of lack of funds.

The best way to deal with corporate crimes is to prosecute the principals and to cancel corporate charters. I will stop the siphoning of local resources by the state and restore the local government fund. Charter school operators are stealing hundreds of millions from public schools. I will end such theft and work to give local communities the right to determine whether or not they want to use their tax dollars to partner with for-profit charter schools.

Political justice

One way to reduce the power of lobbyists is not to take their money. I'm not for sale, never have been. I strongly support public financing of state elections, as I have supported public financing of federal elections. Our campaign slogan, #PowerToWeThe People, means empowering voters, voting, ending the policy and lobbying influence of major corporations, providing access to government, transparency and accountability.

Racial justice

One of the most important concerns I have is that infant mortality among children of color is at an all time high. We will provide comprehensive prenatal health care to new mothers.

I have pledged to reduce incarceration for nonviolent crimes through using the pardon power. We must strive to create programs for reconciliation between police and community groups to minimize the occasion of misunderstandings which can lead to tragedies.

Every young man and woman, regardless of color, income, gender, or other defining characteristic, ought to have access to higher education. It is the responsibility of the state to fully finance an efficient and thorough system of public education, per the DeRolph decision.

The state must stop the theft of public educational funds by for-profit charter operators. Money must be channeled back to public education. Minority communities are systematically deprived of state-sponsored contracts and economic benefits. I will change that, just as when I was mayor of Cleveland, half of my major appointments went to the African American community, which also had fair and full access to contracts.

I chose a running mate, Tara Samples, who will bring her special perspective on matters of racial justice, to the Office of Lieutenant Governor.

Environmental justice

In my campaign for Governor, I have called for an end to fracking, an end to deep well injections, an end to drilling of oil and gas and the restoration of our natural environment, the protection of clean water supplies, protection of surface water and ground water from all practices which do violence to the land. Clean water is not negotiable. We must work together to develop new forms of energy here in Ohio. Meanwhile we must work to change our agricultural practices and shift to regenerative agriculture as a carbon sink. We can sequester gigatons of atmospheric carbon through working with farmers.

International Justice

I have led the effort for 16 years to try to get America to avoid wars or get out of wars. I delivered close to 500 speeches in Congress warning against war in Iraq, challenging the Pentagon, CIA and State Department narrative, voting against military budgets, forcing attention to massive misspending and misappropriation of federal funds.

America has over 800 bases in 130 countries. It is time we came home. It is time we demonstrated a new doctrine of Strength Through Peace. It is time we stopped interfering in the affairs of other countries. Our invasions of other countries helped to create the refugee crisis. Our immigration policies must reflect a fearless, welcoming heart. In our zeal to protect our borders we must not forget America's historic mission, to be the light of the world, a beacon pointing the way to hope for a better life. We must build that better life here, for ourselves, by using America's resources here at home, instead of wasting money in wars.

Social Justice

Social Justice has a companion economic component. If people are denied equal rights, for reasons of race or gender discrimination, they are denied economic opportunities as well. There are First and Fourteenth Amendment implications here. People should be free to be who, in their innermost integrity, they are. We should strive for authenticity in our own lives and let others do the same. As governor I will defend the social and economic rights of people of color, the social and economic rights of Ohio's LGBTQI community, the reproductive rights of women, the economic imperative of equal pay for equal work and will use the office of Governor to advocate for improvements in Social Security.

The Kucinich-Samples ticket is one of diversity, unity, inclusiveness, striving constantly for social and economic justice, breaking barriers, rebuilding Ohio, helping people rebuild their inner cities, their inner lives. Our campaign motto is #PowerToWeThe People because the election is not about the empowerment of two people, but the empowerment of all the people of Ohio. We would like the support of the CCPC and its active involvement in our campaign to transform the state of Ohio into a meaningful vehicle for freedom, social and economic justice for all.

Please join us. Let us bring about this transformation together, joyfully, courageously, determined to be the change and bring it about with clarity, vision and strength. Thank you.

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