4/4/04 - Kucinich Does Carrboro

No it's not an April Fool's joke. This has got to be the first presidential candidate's visit to Carrboro! (Someone please chime in if I'm wrong.) Whatever you may think about his campaign, Dennis Kucinich has been articulate, poised, and principled. And it's kind of exciting that he's coming here!

This is an e-mail from the venerable Joe Straley:

At the Farmers Market in Carrboro
1:00 PM, Sunday, April 4

Satisfied with the hawkish tones of US foreign policy? Come and become dis-satisfied.

Tired of being a part of a nation which bullies nations which it doesn't understand? Come and hear an alternative foreign policy.

Tired of spending billions for war while penny-pinching domestic needs? Dennis is your man.

Dennis Kucinich will be in Carrboro long enough to convince you that a vote for him in the April 17 Democratic Caucus is the best vote you will be able to make this year.


from 8:00 am until 4:00 PM, ON APRIL 17. Come either to the Municipal
Building in Chapel Hill or to the Courthouse in Hillsborough to cast your

NOTE!!! If Dennis Kucinich polls 15 percent of the Caucus Vote in our district we will be granted one delegate at the National Convention pledged to Kucinich.

(This is NOT a Stop Kerry project and is not intended to change the outcome of the Democratic Nomination. It WILL demonstrate the strength of the Peace Movement in North Carolina.)



Mildly interesting: I saw Jerry Brown speak on the steps of the Post Office on Franklin Street in, I think, 1992. My GF at the time went ballistic because she thought we had to "get behind" Clinton for Party unity. We had quite an argument about it, actually.

Dennis Kantwinamuch is not a presidential candidate, he only thinks he is at this time.

Hey all, I missed the first half of the rally. Any reports?

As always, OP has a nice spread of memory and perspective, invaluable in a town with such a transitory population. Thanks for the Clinton stories -- I think they collectively show more history with the Big Dog than most towns our size got. Not bad for a state that hasn't been in play in almost three decades.

From what I saw after the speech, Dennis was indeed articulate, poised, and principled. Also catnip to the ladies. I hope to see him raise the roof a bit at the convention. Surely the Party doesn't want to lose any of his 5% (ish) to Nader, right? Anyhow, it's not like there are scads of OTHER compelling reasons to go to the caucus on April 17th...

(Sometime poster James Coley has a good story about Clinton and pens; you out there, JC?)

Ruby, you had a chance to listen to the PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES SPEAK and you were running around "hiding out" from security? Ah, youth. My DH and older son were there--I was home with our younger son. DS still remembers meeting Clinton. He was in second or third grade at the time...and just starting to learn about politics. He's been and avid newspaper reader ever since.


I was at that event in Kenan Stadium, too! But I don't remember the speeches - I was with a group of protesters holding anti-NAFTA (and therefore anti-Clinton) signs and we spent most of the time looking for security to keep from getting thrown out. It was a long way from our celebratory roadtrip to his inauguration the year before.

Good times...

Ross Perot's daughter went to UNC in the early 90's and lived not too far from the Carrboro line off Cameron.

A warning: if the Democratic National Committee, John Kerry, and the media find out that Dean lived here & Kucinich actually will visit, they may ensure that no future atlases include Carrboro or Chapel Hill.

Howard Dean LIVED in Carrboro for a couple of months in 1972. Does that count?

I think the best I can come up with is that President James K Polk probably travelled through the area that is now Carrboro. As a member of the Class of 1818, Polk could not have visited Carrboro because it did not exist until after he was dead, but having gone to school at UNC, it seems likely that he travelled around this area.

Regardless, it is clear that both Nixon and Kennedy have been to Chapel Hill. And as Kleinschmidt mentioned Clinton visited in 1992 (which Mark K remembers well because there was a front page picture of Clinton in the Chapel Hill News - sitting right next to Mark Kleinschmidt at an education conference!)

Clinton also visited on University Day 1993(?) to help celebrate the University's bicentennial. At that time, Clinton was introduced by former UNC President Bill Friday. Friday started his introduction by telling this story:

President Kennedy had been in just the same spot forty years earlier (to the day?) for a public address at Kenan Stadium. Friday had had the pleasure of introducing the President of the United States then as well.

After Kennedy's speech, he rode back to the airport to fly off elsewhere and Friday accompanied him in the President's limo. While in the limo, they talked and Kennedy asked Friday to write down his address or something. Not having a pen on him, Friday borrowed the President's pen and wrote down the information.

Within an hour or so, Kennedy was all packed up on the plane and Friday was returning to his office. As soon as Friday went to write something down, he reached in his pocket and pulled out a pen, which read on the side 'Office of the President of the United States.' Friday was mortified that he had stolen a pen from the President, but it also made a heck of a souvenir, so he kept it.

At this point in the story, Friday reached in his pocket and said, " President Clinton, on behalf of the University of North Carolina, I would like to formally return this pen to the Office of the President of the United States." And the crowd cheered and roared. I don't know whether Clinton really made Friday give the pen up, but it was a very amusing moment in Kenan Stadium.

Clinton was also in Chapel Hill in May of 1992 and appeared at a conference on distant learning held in Sitterson Hall.

Ok, but... CARRBORO?! The Paris of the Piedmont?

Oh, hell, while we're on presidential politics, did you all see this?


Last month the Bush-Cheney campaign had a service on its web site with which you could augment a generic "Bush-Cheney 2004" poster with your own slogan on the top, a poster you could then download as a pdf for printing and distributing around your town. Presumably, they were looking for slogans like "North Carolinians for Bush," but a number of Democrats and other assorted wags got wind of it, dubbed it "The Sloganator," and proceeded to create thousands of, well, non-standard posters for the Bush-Cheney campaign, all of which are now downloadable -- and paid for by the Bush-Cheney campaign. Within two weeks the campaign had shut the whole project down.

The slide show above (I think it's Flash) is a tribute to The Sloganator.

I can't speak to presidential candidate visits to Carrboro, but I do happen to know that then-Arkansas Governor Bill Clinton's visit to Hillsborough in 1992 was the first time Hillsborough had been a presidential campaign stop since Al Smith (http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/USAsmithA.htm) was the Democratic nominee for President in 1928.


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