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Rep. Dennis J. Kucinich (D-Ohio), the two-time presidential candidate and icon of the antiwar left, suffered a bruising primary defeat Tuesday as a new Republican-drawn congressional map threatened to end the career of one of the most colorful figures in Congress.
With most attention focused on the state’s GOP presidential primary battle, and no Democratic primary for president, Kucinich was left in a low-turnout race in a newly drawn district against his once-close ally, Rep. Marcy Kaptur (D-Ohio).
With about 90 percent of the vote in, Kaptur led 60 to 36 percent.
From his stint as Cleveland’s “Boy Mayor” in the late 1970s, including two debt defaults and the forced sale of the city’s electric plant, to his unsuccessful effort to impeach Vice President Richard B. Cheney in 2007, Kucinich has repeatedly thrust himself into the national spotlight. Often coming up on the short end of his fights, Kucinich, 65, never stopped swinging but usually did so in a friendly spirit.
Believe it or not, Kaptur will go on to face Joe “The Plumber” Wurzelbacher in November.
If a far right Congressman was blown out in a primary the left would be doing the happy dance. Instead they’re in mourning.
“That’s amazing,” a shocked Rachel Maddow reacted to the news that Dennis Kucinich lost his primary race on Super Tuesday. Kucinich lost his district after Ohio redrew their Congressional lines, leaving him to run in a nearby district against an incumbent Democrat.
“That means that there’s not going to be a Dennis Kucinich in Congress anymore, which is almost hard to believe. He has been a singular force for his, not only for his ideological position but he’s just been such a character,” Maddow lamented.
“He was the dependable guy with the progressive community. He’ll be missed,” Al Sharpton said.
“He’s a guy that you could always count on when it came to a universal healthcare conversation, or when it came to getting out of Iraq and Afghanistan and also middle-class issues and also he was good on labor,” Ed Schultz said.