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Monday, September 17, 2007

OH-10 & P2008: Kucinich (D) Protests Exclusion From Presidential Events; Hires New Campaign Manager

On Saturday the presidential campaign of Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-Cleveland) sent out an email to supporters, complaining bitterly that Iowa Democratic leaders are "rigging the game" by excluding him from two events: yesterday's Democratic Steak Fry in Indianola hosted by Sen. Tom Harkin (D-IA), and the forum on health care and financial security to be hosted on Thursday in Davenport by the AARP and Iowa Public Television. Event organizers claim that Kucinich does not have a sufficiently "active organization" in Iowa, but Kucinich correctly notes that at about 3% he actually leads event participants Sen. Joe Biden (D-DE) and Sen. Chris Dodd (D-CT) in most Iowa polls.

Meanwhile, Kucinich continues to ignore primary opponent Rosemary Palmer (D-Cleveland) and her challenge to debate Kucinich five times in a series of events devoted to substantive issues in the 10th Ohio Congressional District race. He doesn't mind forestalling debate in his own Congressional race, just being shut out of debates in the presidential contest.

In other news, Kucinich has fired campaign manager David Bright, who had declined to relocate to Kucinich's Cleveland headquarters from his organic farm in Dixmont, Maine, and replaced him with hired retired Army Capt. Mike Klein. Klein is tasked with turning around Kucinich's presidential campaign based on a platform of “strength through peace.” Klein, a veteran of the first Gulf War, worked on the 2004 campaign of Gen. Wesley Clark (D-AR) but has never managed a campaign before. Klein says he is bringing in new staffers, launching a new Web site, and working on branding and messaging. He said he was brought in for his leadership skills and not necessarily his political acumen, and described Kucinich’s bid as “a guerilla campaign, so to speak.”

CORRECTION: David Bright has contacted me to say that he was not fired from the campaign, but was in fact merely an interim campaign manager until Klein could come on board. Bright indicates that he is "still working for the Kucinich campaign full time, as paid staff, at the same salary as when I started," and that moving to Ohio was "never a condition of the job that I move to Cleveland." Apparently I misunderstood the import of the news story upon which I relied, and I apologize for any confusion caused by my error.


At September 17, 2007 6:29 PM , David Bright said...

This is David Bright, in Dixmont Maine.

I am still working for the Kucinich campaign full time, as paid staff, at the same salary as when I started. I was never fired. I was always the interim campaign manager until Mike Klein could finish up his previous work and come on board.

It was never a condition of the job that I move to Cleveland, but I would have moved if it had been a condition. My wife is from Ohio so working there for the duration of the campaign would not have been a problem, and I have worked out of the Cleveland office several times.

Your current statement on the web page that I was fired is incorrect and libelous. Please remove it immediately.

I'm happy to talk to you any time about my role in this campaign, and in the 2004 campaign. Call me.


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