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It's time. Barack Obama's campaign politely asked Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick to not attend the Democratic National Convention.  Kilpatrick is a superdelegate because of a position he holds with the DNC. He's also under indictment for several felony counts including perjury and assaulting a Wayne County Sheriff's deputy. Pretty much every major politician in Michigan has either called on Kilpatrick to resign or publicly stated they hope the situation would resolve itself quickly so the city can "move forward." That's a nice way of saying Kilpatrick should resign.

Technically Kilpatrick's bail restrictions prevent him from leaving metro Detroit so he can't actually attend the convention anyway but publicly stripping Kilpatrick of his superdelegate status would a significant and positive step for the DNC and Obama. I'll explain after the jump.

Michigan will probably go Democratic in November but just barely. McCain is running well up here. That might seem surprising but understand that a state so dependent on the auto industry in going to live a candidate willing to drill everything including baby pandas (if necessary) for oil. Let's not forget the otherwise liberal John Dingell is a significant reason why toughening CAFE standards is so difficult.

Michigan is also a racially divisive state. The tag Michissippi rings true when it comes to race relations. In the 1930's and 1940's Michigan absorbed the south's wretched refuse and they brought their racial attitudes with them.  George Wallace won the Democratic primary up here once and the Wallace voter-type is still a force in Michigan politics. As a white guy from a blue collar/Michigan background, believe me when I say that blue collar white guys in Michigan are looking for a reason to not vote for Obama. That his skin pigmentation is similar to Kwame Kilpatrick's would be enough. To win Michigan, Obama needs to distance himself from our slob of a Mayor in Detroit.

Obama wouldn't be throwing Kilpatrick under the bus either. Kwame Kilpatrick deserves all the crap he's being forced to eat right now. The guy richly deserves the title of America's worst Mayor.

Distancing himself from Kilpatrick will, ironically enough, probably help him in Detroit as well. Detroiters are increasingly fed up with the third-rate kleptocratic politics embodied by Kilpatrick and his ilk. His mother, chair of the Congressional Black Caucus and a member of the Appropriations Committee, nearly lost her seat in this month's Democratic primary. In a three-way race against two underfunded and underwhelming opponents she received only 39% of the vote. Even in the Detroit portion of her district, she received less than 50% of the vote.

Removing Kilpatrick will be a demonstration to Detroit voters, who have been too often let down by politicians of all stripes, that Barack Obama isn't business as usual. Get rid of Kilpatrick and send a clear message: A President Obama won't hop into bed with the same rank political hacks who have fleeced our school system (Detroit Public Schools is running a $400 million deficit), sold us out to polluters (half the City Council and Kilpatrick's father are under investigation for bribery relating to a sludge plant), and otherwise allowed this great city to rot on the vine.

Detroit needs hope and is ready for change. Barack Obama can demonstrate he is the man to deliver both by drawing a line in the sand and saying "Kwame Kilpatrick is not a part of my Democratic Party."

Originally posted to Woodwards Friend on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 08:10 PM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Kilpatrick... (9+ / 0-)

    can't leave the state so he won't be at the convention. Problem solved without having to draw attention to the accused.

    I prefer peace Wouldn't have to have one worldly possession But essentially I'm an animal So just what do I do with all the aggression?

    by jbou on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 08:12:54 PM PDT

    •  That's gutless politics as usual (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      indybend, lineatus

      Send a message Obama. Don't let the Republicans make the presidential campaign about Kwame Kilpatrick in Michigan.

      detroitist - chronicling the life and times of the city that God intended.

      by Woodwards Friend on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 08:15:16 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  sure (0+ / 0-)

        Obama could throw the thug mayor under the bus, but he will lose the machine Democrats in and around Detroit that Kilpatrick controls.

        I prefer peace Wouldn't have to have one worldly possession But essentially I'm an animal So just what do I do with all the aggression?

        by jbou on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 08:19:23 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  I've mentioned before that my very repub uncle (0+ / 0-)

        and his friends refer to blacks as "democrats".  As in:  "So this democrat comes into the shop yesterday..."

        Uncle is from Detroit originally (as was my whole family, once they made the jump from Ireland).  Some of the racist bullshit he spews comes from his adopted state of Indiana.  But some of it originates in Michigan - that Michissippi name is new to me, but oh so appropriate.  Kilpatrick feeds all of those prejudices.  I would be so happy if he wasn't there representing the Democrats or the "democrats".

        Now, go spread some peace, love and understanding. Use force if necessary. - Phil N DeBlanc

        by lineatus on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 08:29:28 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  no need (0+ / 0-)

        isn't it really a more elegant solution?

        Head to Heading Left, BlogTalkRadio's progressive radio site!

        by thereisnospoon on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 08:42:44 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  I thought (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      he could travel on official business with a call to the court to let them know he was travelling...?

      "Don't falme me pleas."

      by socratic on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 08:15:47 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Kwame "Yawz Boyz" Kilpatrick... (4+ / 0-)

    is an embarrassment and needs to RESIGN.

  •  No, he gets to go... which is righteously stoopid (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    It is horrifying that we have to fight our own government to save the environment. Ansel Adams -6.5 -6.75

    by Statusquomustgo on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 08:17:29 PM PDT

  •  asdf (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    indybend, tosser, MichiganGirl

    You can't ask this guy to do anything.  If he had any shame at all he would have quit long ago.  You have to tell him he can't come.  Just like the governor has to tell him he can't be mayor anymore.

  •  Let him go but insist he cast his vote for Gravel (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:


    Now, go spread some peace, love and understanding. Use force if necessary. - Phil N DeBlanc

    by lineatus on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 08:23:44 PM PDT

  •  I'd much rather see him removed from office. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Rimjob, Statusquomustgo

    And, hey, if that happens we don't have to worry about him being a superdelegate!  Two birds, one stone.

    Any force that tries to make you feel shame for being who you a form of tyranny... And it must be rejected, resisted, and defeated. ~Al Gore

    by Sinister Rae on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 08:26:15 PM PDT

  •  Great. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Seriously, what's the deal with Kilpatrick?  How can he not know his miserable career is over?

    Now it looks like this delusional jerkwad is actually going to show up.

    Maybe he, Eliot Spitzer, JRE, Marion Barry, Willie Jefferson and Debbie Stabenow's husband can form their own contingent at the convention.

  •  For those not familiar with the case... (5+ / 0-)

    Check Wikipedia for the full backstory:

    The short version:

    --Wild party at the Mayor's mansion in 2002
    --Mayor's wife catches him with a stripper
    --Mayor's wife beats up said stripper
    --Stripper goes to hospital
    --A few days after getting out of hospital, stripper is killed by a spray of gunfire in her car
    --Several Detroit cops investigate her death and other nasty stuff connected to Mayor
    --Mayor fires cops
    --Cops sue city of Detroit for wrongful termination; Mayor and his (female) chief of staff testify in court
    --Cops win lawsuit
    --Detroit, already on the verge of bankruptcy, has to pony up $8 million to settle lawsuit
    --Local press discovers thousands of text messages between Mayor and his chief of staff placed on city-issued pagers (ie, public info)
    --Turns out Mayor and CoS were having an affair and flat-out perjured themselves during trial; they openly discussed how and why they fired the cops

    And on, and on, and on...the full story is absurdly convoluted and involves more nasty stuff than you can shake a stick at.

  •  So whats Kilpatricks huge crime?? (0+ / 0-)

    He text his alleged lover and lied about it??
    He assaulted two armed sheriffs?
    Does anyone really believe he assaulted armed law enforcement officials??
    Or could this be a situation where law enforcement officials armed to the teeth come to your house, push your around then charge you with assault because you didn't hit the ground fast enough.
    Let the man have his day in court.

    •  Um, no. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      CJB, Rimjob

      Kilpatrick is an embarrassment to anyone and everything he touches.

      Here's the full story--his trail of slime is far, far too long to list here:

      •  All i read were allegations. (0+ / 0-)

        Let him face a jury of his peers.

        •  I'm assuming that you don't live in the area... (0+ / 0-)

 I'll give you the benefit of the doubt.

          Yes, he does deserve due process before being legally convicted. That's not the point here.

          However, what he's legally found guilty of is a separate issue from his ability to govern the city of Detroit, of which he has none.

          The city is at a complete standstill. As long as Kwame Kilpatrick is in office, literally nothing is getting accomplished throughout the city; Detroit has become a national joke, and if he goes to the DNC, it could even conceivably impact the Presidential election.

          Kwame must go, NOW.

    •  Um... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Brainwrap, Rimjob

      1). Lying in court is a crime.  It's called perjury.  It can, in fact, be a "huge" crime.  It's significantly different than lying to your wife, or lying to the press.

      2).  He's also been charged with obstruction of justice, not just lying, another serious crime.

      3).  So, we're not supposed to believe that Kilpatrick assaulted the officers (which, fwiw, doesn't have to be some serious physical attack; any touch and/or obstruction of the officers would be enough), but we're instead supposed to think that the officers barged into the house and pushed the mayor around?  

      4).  It wasn't his house.

      5).  He also violated his bond, twice.

      6).  He'll have his day in court.  In the meantime, there are serious ramifications for his staying in office--the whole sordid affair is a distraction that is preventing shit from getting done.

      Any force that tries to make you feel shame for being who you a form of tyranny... And it must be rejected, resisted, and defeated. ~Al Gore

      by Sinister Rae on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 08:55:40 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Huge is lieing to take a country to war. (0+ / 0-)

        People die from those kind of lies.
        Bush is facing no charges but somehow the sex lies of a mayor are a 'huge' problem for the country and 'preventing shit from getting done'.
        I am glad Clinton stood his ground when his political enemies having failed to beat him at the polls tried to weaken him through unending investigations.
        No one can survive that kind of scrutiny. With enough money and time a politically motivator prosecutor can turn up dirt on anyone.

        •  Uh, no. (0+ / 0-)

          You should really just read the Wikipedia article.

          The problem isn't that he lied about sex; that's just seedy and embarrassing, and(mostly) a private matter.  

          The problem is that the two of them left written records (the text messages) of their actions in the firing of the cops; the records contradict their testimony. They perjured themselves in court about their official actions, not about their sexual relationship.

          He's going to jail.

    •  The affair wasn't the only thing he lied about (0+ / 0-)

      he also lied about firing 2 cops who had been investigating him (this was also discovered in the text messages obtained by the Detroit Free Press). They won a lawsuit against the city for being wrongfully fired, and were awarded an 8 million dollar settlement.

  •  Obama needs to lead a recall effort. (0+ / 0-)

    There's your win-win.

  •  It would be a mistake for the DNC to remove him (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Big River Bandido

    I don't want Kilpatrick at the Democratic Convention. That won't do anything for our city, our state or the Democratic party.

    However, whatever happens to Kilpatrick - whether he resigns, works out a plea deal, goes to court and is tried, found innocent or guilty, it is important for Detroit to deal with Kilpatrick. Not the DNC. He needs to be judged by the people he is supposed to serve. It isn't appropriate for a political party to remove his status as a delegate - that will only add to the feelings of some that he's being railroaded.

    •  I can see your point (0+ / 0-)

      but it's pretty small compared to what's at stake.  Look, you've got a thug as mayor, ready to embarrass the party on the eve of a potential triumph.  

      The judge has ruled that Kilpatrick can go to the convention...makes me wonder if the judge is a Republican who'd absolutely love to see that happen.  It appears, then, that the DNC will have no choice...there just isn't another body with jurisdiction capable of making the call.  

      Further, it's a win-win for the Democrats to railroad this guy.  His conduct is plainly reprehensible, and the entire party ought to easily rally around an effort to reject him. Publicly, if they have to.  It's important.  

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