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Wednesday, July 09, 2003

Kucinich speaks out in Congress

From the Kucinich campaign web site:
For the second day in a row, Rep. Kucinich took to the House Floor to call for cutting wasteful military spending to fund domestic programs.

Yesterday, in debate on the $368 billion Defense Department Appropriations Bill, he singled out the F22 fighter plane, the V22 Ospry and other unnecessary weapons systems. Today, in a debate on an education bill, he continued to critique Pentagon waste and misplaced priorities:

"We will pass this bill today, the Ready to Teach Act, and in doing so, we all agree that the country needs the federal government to spend $300 million on teacher preparation and retention. But in fact, we won't spend that much on teacher preparation and retention. The President has asked that we spend only $90 million, or 30 percent of what we today all agree is necessary. Why?

"Yesterday we passed a Defense spending bill that spends $8.9 billion on the National Missile Defense system that doesn't work, and today we will pass an education bill that, if fully funded, would work. But we won't fully fund it.

"There is money for education. We could re-allocate the $8.9 billion for missile defense and put it into education. We'd have money to hire and train thousands more qualified teachers. We'd have money to buy 9 million new computers for our children and schools. We'd have the money
to fully fund and expand the Head Start program, DEA, and The No Child Left Behind Act.

"National Missile Defense doesn't work. Teachers do. They work for our children, they work for America, and they work for our future."

Kucinich also spoke about the lies the administration used to go to war:

"More attention needs to be paid to false and misleading statements that preceded the vote on the Iraq Resolution in this House. Two days before the vote, on October 8, 2002, speaking in Cincinnati, the President spoke of his determination to attack Iraq: 'Facing clear evidence of peril, we cannot wait for the final proof - - the smoking gun - - that could come in the form of a mushroom cloud'.

"This chilling, apocalyptic statement was not based on clear evidence of peril, but was in fact based on falsehoods, hidden from public view by the office of the Vice President.

"Did the Vice President's office knowingly conceal information its own representative obtained that Iraq was in fact not attempting to purchase nuclear materials from Niger? Was the White House in possession of this same information prior to the President giving his shocking declaration in Cincinnati?

"There is no question that the President's statements we now know were false and misleading influenced the debate in this House and the decision to go to war. It is imperative we have open, public hearings to wash this stain from our national reputation."

Nice shot, there, DK! "Stain!" If one president can be impeached for staining a dress, surely another one can be impeached for staining our national reputation.