A new home for Kucinich?

  • By Jerry Cornfield Herald Writer
  • Sunday, May 22, 2011 6:17pm
  • Local News

SHORELINE — Ohio Congressman Dennis Kucinich flipped vegan pancakes, talked foreign policy and let Democrats know Sunday which race he won’t be entering next year: the presidency.

About that other contest he’s rumored to be considering – where he vies for Congress from a ZIP code in this state – he hasn’t decided.

“I’m not here as a candidate, I want to make that clear,” he told 100 people at a fundraiser for Democrats in the 32nd Legislative District that spans south Snohomish and north King counties.

Kucinich, 64, is contemplating his political future because Ohio is losing two House seats in redistricting following the 2010 census. He expects that the state’s Republican-controlled Legislature will abolish his district and his seat when boundaries are redrawn.

Supporters in Washington, Maine and other states are courting him in hopes of becoming his new political base. He said he’s humbled by the outreach.

“I’m hopeful to continue serving in the United States Congress. I just haven’t made any decisions about where that might be,” he said.

Those attending pressed Kucinich for a time frame, which drew a smile from the man who ran for president in 2004 and 2008.

“Obviously I have to make a decision before the 2012 election and before that, before the filing deadline, and before that I have to make a decision exactly where I’d run, and I haven’t made any of those decisions yet,” he said, inciting a few snickers.

“Am I thinking about it? Next question,” he said as the crowd laughed.

Kucinich is attracted to Washington for political and personal reasons.

This state is gaining a new seat in Congress with its borders to be determined this fall when redistricting is done. That new district could be a possibility for him.

So too could the 1st Congressional District, which includes Shoreline. U.S. Rep. Jay Inslee, D-Wa., holds the job now, but if Gov. Chris Gregoire does not seek a third term, he’s likely to run for the job and vacate his federal post.

On the personal side, Kucinich frequents the state for private time. He said he likes hiking at Mount Rainier and areas in the Puyallup River Valley, among other places.

The rumored possibility of his candidacy is stirring a lot of chatter among the rank-and-file and leadership of the Democratic Party.

Kucinich said in an interview he doesn’t want to fuel the speculation, but his weekend schedule in Washington certainly did. It looked like the itinerary of a candidate with stops at political fundraisers, meetings with college students and a speech at the Green Festival in Seattle.

At the breakfast, Bill Van Horn, 79, of Lake Forest Park, said he wanted Kucinich to run.

“This is an opportunity to have a very progressive Democrat lead us,” Van Horn said. “A person who has a very important message should be able to represent our district.”

Scott Ballinger of Woodway said the fuss surrounding Kucinich is good because it helps “trumpet the fact that Washington Democrats are liberal Democrats”

But he wouldn’t welcome him as a candidate.

“I think there’s kind of a carpetbagger aspect to him coming,” he said. “And I’m not sure Kucinich is good for the 1st Congressional District.”

State Democratic Party chairman Dwight Pelz has expressed similar concerns in publicly opposing a Kucinich bid. He’s also said the Ohioan’s politics put him too far left to win in a suburban district, which is what the 1st and 10th will almost certainly be after redistricting.

Edmonds Councilwoman Adrienne Fraley-Monillas said it’s not for the party to decide the viability of a Kucinich candidacy.

“I think it’s up to the voters to make that decision,” she said.

Dorothy King of Edmonds, who turned 89 on Sunday, wants the progressive congressman to keep serving from his longtime home state.

“I think he has good ideas and makes good speeches,” she said. “I don’t think he should do it. If he’s going to move, he should move to some other place in Ohio.”

Jerry Cornfield: 360-352-8623; jcornfield@heraldnet.com

Talk to us

> Give us your news tips.

> Send us a letter to the editor.

> More Herald contact information.

More in Local News

A Cessna 150 crashed north of Paine Field on Friday evening, Feb. 16, 2024, in Mukilteo, Washington. The pilot survived without serious injury. (Courtesy of Richard Newman.)
‘I’m stuck in the trees’: 911 call recounts plane crash near Paine Field

Asad Ali was coming in for a landing in a Cessna 150 when he crashed into woods south of Mukilteo. Then he called 911 — for 48 minutes.

Everett
Snohomish County likely to feel more like winter, beginning Monday

Get ready for a mix of rain and snow this week, along with cooler temperatures.

Anthony Boggess
Arlington man sentenced for killing roommate who offered shelter

Anthony Boggess, 33, reported hearing the voices of “demons” the night he strangled James Thrower, 65.

Patrick Kunz speaks during his sentencing on Thursday, Feb. 29, 2024, at Snohomish County Superior Court in Everett, Washington.(Annie Barker / The Herald)
Everett gymnastics coach who spied on students sentenced to 6 months

Patrick Kunz, 47, pleaded guilty to charges of voyuerism and possession of child pornography last month.

Traffic moves along Highway 526 in front of Boeing’s Everett Production Facility on Nov. 28, 2022, in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / Sound Publishing)
Everett transgender mechanic alleges Boeing treated her ‘like a zoo animal’

For years, Boeing allowed toxicity “to fester and grow” at its Everett factory, according to Rachel Rasmussen, an employee from 1989 to 2024.

Monroe High School (Monroe School District)
Monroe High School teacher accused of sexual misconduct, put on leave

Few details were not available Thursday afternoon. Police were seeking information from the public.

Everett
After 10 months, police make arrest in fatal Everett shooting

Police believe Malik “Capone” Fulson killed Joseph Haderlie, 27, in April 2023 outside an apartment complex on Casino Road.

Kathy Purviance-Snow poses for a photo in her computer lab at Snohomish High School on Tuesday, Feb. 27, 2024, in Snohomish, WA. (Annie Barker / The Herald)
To ban or embrace ChatGPT? Local teachers fight AI with AI — or don’t

“It has fundamentally changed my teaching in really stressful and exciting ways,” an EvCC teacher said. At all levels of education, ChatGPT poses a tricky question.

Ryan Rafter appears in court for sentencing Wednesday, Feb. 28, 2024, at Snohomish County Superior Court in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Man sentenced to life in prison for murder of Everett father

In April 2022, Ryan Rafter, 42, shot Christopher Buck, 29, to death after breaking in to his home to steal drugs.

Marysville
Driver strikes, kills Marysville man who was crossing I-5 in Seattle

The man’s car had broken down near Mercer Street. Troopers reported that he was struck when he tried to cross the freeway.

Logo for news use featuring the municipality of Darrington in Snohomish County, Washington. 220118
Police: Darrington woman stabbed, buried 5-year-old daughter

The woman reportedly told investigators she was hearing voices before she killed her young daughter on Valentine’s Day.

In this Feb. 5, 2018, file photo a Boeing 737 MAX 7 is displayed during a debut for employees and media of the new jet in Renton, Wash. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, File)
FAA gives Boeing 90 days to develop plan to fix quality, safety issues

The agency’s ultimatum comes a day after a meeting with CEO Dave Calhoun and other top Boeing officials in Washington, D.C.

Support local journalism

If you value local news, make a gift now to support the trusted journalism you get in The Daily Herald. Donations processed in this system are not tax deductible.