BOBBY KENNEDY JR. ENDORSES OBAMA FOR PRESIDENT
* After a long and contentious primary battle between Senators Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, a fight which divided the Kennedy family and threatened to split the Democratic party, the time has come for unity.
In that spirit of party loyalty, Robert F. Kennedy Jr., a longtime ally and supporter of Hillary’s, has finally endorsed Senator Obama. He was on the campaign trail yesterday in Wisconsin, singing the presumptive nominee’s praises and encouraging Democrats to come together for a win in the fall.
Kennedy’s Wisconsin appearance was covered by the Stevens Point Journal:
Robert F. Kennedy Jr. autographs a book Wednesday night before his keynote speech to the National Wellness Conference at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point.
KENNEDY WELCOMES DEMOCRATS TO BASE
By Kelly Fraser
For the Journal
It was standing room only Wednesday afternoon at local Democratic Party headquarters on Main Street when Robert F. Kennedy Jr. dropped by to stir up support for Sen. Barack Obama’s presidential campaign and the campaigns of local Democratic candidates.
More than 200 people attended the event, estimated Gary Hawley, Portage county Democratic Party co-chairman. Hawley said turnout was good, considering the short notice of the event — Kennedy was in Stevens Point to speak at the National Wellness Conference on Wednesday night.
Kennedy, who principally spoke of the dangers of the Bush administration’s ties to lobbyists with corporate interests, gave his full support to Obama.
“To me, Barack Obama is the one American who can restore our prestige, our influence, our moral authority across the globe,” he said.
RFK Jr. told excited supporters why he feels Obama will bring a welcome change to every aspect of our country.
“There’s literally no more important issue in the world than getting Obama elected,” Kennedy said. “This country has lost so much prestige, our moral authority. We’ve lost our influence across the globe.”
Kennedy was introduced by State Sen. Julie Lassa, D-Stevens Point, State Rep. Louis Molepske, D-Stevens Point, and Stevens Point Mayor Andrew Halverson, who all expressed their hope that Obama will win the majority in Wisconsin come November.
Many audience members said they felt inspired by Kennedy’s remarks, including Lauren Hewitt, 14, who attended the event with her mother.
“One thing I’ve always struggled with is patriotism and love for my country,” she said, adding that Kennedy’s memories of traveling abroad with his father were encouraging.
“He’s an excellent speaker, and he’s right on,” said Judy Martin of Junction City. “We need to have someone in the White House who cares about us, not big business.”
The event served as the local kick-off for the Wisconsin Campaign for Change. In the next few weeks, the Wisconsin Democratic Party plans to host similar kick-off events at several dozen offices around the state in preparation for the upcoming general election.
During the event, party staff members also were registering volunteers for phone bank shifts and door-to-door canvassing.
We also bring you coverage of Kennedy’s speech at the National Wellness conference from the Wausau Daily Herald:
ENVIRONMENTAL STEWARDSHIP ABOUT “OURSELVES,” SAYS RFK JR.
STEVENS POINT — In the keynote address of the National Wellness Conference, environmental activist and lawyer Robert F. Kennedy Jr. stressed the importance of natural resource conservation and its importance to Americans’ health.
“We’re not protecting the environment for the sake of the fishes and the birds, we’re protecting it for ourselves,” he told Wellness Conference participants gathered in the Laird Room of the Dreyfus University Center on Wednesday night.
Kennedy was invited to deliver the address at the 33rd annual conference, held on the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point campus this week, to drive home the green theme of the conference, “A visionary turning: well Earth, well people.”
Kennedy gave a grim review of environmental policy under the George W. Bush administration, supplementing statistics with his personal experience prosecuting polluters in Appalachia and working with water-protection groups the Hudson Riverkeepers and the Waterkeeper Alliance, which he founded.
Kennedy also paused to outline what he said was a failure of the American media to inform the public about global warming and the Bush administration’s environmental wrongs.
“Today we know more about Paris Hilton then we know about global warming,” he said. “We’re the best entertained and worst informed country on the face of the earth.”
Kennedy also touched on environmental issues facing Wisconsin including mercury contamination of freshwater fish and air pollution emitted from coal-burning plants.
“We’re living today in a science fiction nightmare,” he said. “Where my children, and all children of Wisconsin, and (all) of the children in America, can now no longer engage in the seminal, primal activity of American youth. Which is to go fishing with their father or mother at the local fishing hole and then come home and safely eat the fish because somebody gave money to a politician.”
Early on in his speech, Kennedy emphasized that this scenario could be turned around quickly with the support of committed politicians and citizens.
“This is something we can do in a few years — not a few decades — if we had the right political leadership,” he said.
Hmm. Indeed, we can do this. We can turn things around with the “right political leadership.” Yes We Can…
…but is that leader Barack Obama? Many “Good Democrats” are starting to wonder if he’s The Right Man for the Job, so we’ll open the floor to our informed and always-opinionated readers. Your thoughts?