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Government and Politics




Drones, cliffs and astronauts: Kucinich wraps things up on the House floor
Ohio's outgoing congressional maverick and his final floor speeches
by WKSU's M.L. SCHULTZE
This story is part of a special series.


Web Editor
M.L. Schultze
 
Dennis Kucinich and his wife, before redrawn districts ended his time in Congress.
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In his last hours on the floor of Congress, Cleveland Rep. Dennis Kucinich took on big money, two parties and drone strikes. WKSU’s M.L. Schultze has more.

SCHULTZE: Dennis Kucinich wraps up in Congress

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Dennis Kucinich lost the March Democratic primary to long-time Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur, and his 16 years in Congress ends with the 112th Congress.

He spent his last hours on floor speeches cementing his reputation as a maverick and blasting both parties for the fiscal cliff.

“The apparent dis-functionality of government masks the reality that the taxed resources of government are increasingly are going to the highest bidders in a $4 billion national election. The debris at the bottom of the fiscal cliff will be the wrecked hopes of doctors of Medicare patients, unemployed workers who can’t protect their families, middle class families who can’t afford to pay anymore.”

He also criticized the CIA.

“I’m very concerned about the shift that occurred in our national security policy, where the Central Intelligence Agency has increasingly played a very powerful paramilitary role with the execution of drone strikes. There are many innocent civilians being killed by drone strikes. There’s a lack of accountability here. And there have been studies that suggest, for example, in Yement hat drone strikes are stirring up anti-American sentiment to the point where al-Qaeda is actually being empowered.”

But he did have kind words in one speech, paying tribute to Astronaut Neil Armstrong as the House debated renaming  a NASA research center in California after the fellow Ohioan. 

Said Kuchinich: "Neil Armstrong’s voyage to the moon represented a personal heroic journey and also was expressive of the uniquely American capacity to reach higher and higher.”

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