Dean's list

Thank you so much for James Ridgeway's comments regarding John Kerry and his sinking candidacy ["John Kerry Must Go," Mondo Washington, April 28-May 4]. I thought I was the only one who felt that way.

I have voted in every election since I was 18. Now 46, I find I cannot vote Democratic as I usually do. I simply cannot. This man must step aside. I was not a Dean fan, but damn—now I wonder why I wasn't.

Bush has got to go, and I certainly will not vote for him. Where does that leave me? Will I be another apathetic nonvoter? I can't stand this. What is wrong with the Democratic leadership?

Bobbi Ingram
Charlotte, North Carolina

The Maine event

Re James Ridgeway's "John Kerry Must Go" (Mondo Washington, April 28-May 4):

Putting aside for the moment the fact that Howard Dean himself has said that he "never wanted to be president," what the hell are you people thinking? This nation is in for the fight of its life, and every oar has to be in the water and pulling with maximum strength over the long haul. I remember Kerry's testimony before Congress, and I remember the threats and harassment that went along with it. This guy can and will go the distance, and I will do everything within my power in my little corner of the world to get him elected.

Martha Sterling-Golden
Bath, Maine

Bush campaign HQ, 36 Cooper Square

How does the Voice like being used as a tool to get G.W. Bush re-elected (i.e., being used by Matt Drudge to bad-mouth Kerry in order to make it appear that the publication supports Bush)?

This is why the GOP wins more than the Dems. It doesn't have loose cannons shooting themselves in the foot.

Dan Sarazen
Weston, Massachusetts

Kerry campaign song courtesy Guns N' Roses

Re "John Kerry Must Go":

I had to double-check the date that this article was published. It sounds like it was penned last September when everyone in the media thought Howard Dean was the Democrats' only hope.

There is a reason Kerry is our nominee, thank goodness, instead of Dean. Democrats came to their senses during the primaries and realized only one man had the qualifications to beat Bush, and that man is John Kerry. He proved in the primaries he had the tenacity to come from behind and win.

Ridgeway is ready to jump ship because the three-time-deferment Dick Cheney has the gall to question John Kerry's patriotism over throwing a handful of his medals. Kerry could have put them up for auction on eBay for all I care. Unlike his Republican chicken-hawk counterparts, Kerry earned the right to do whatever he wanted with them.

Ridgeway's looking for a knockout punch in this fight six months before it ends. If there's one thing Ridgeway should have learned during the primaries, it's that John Kerry is a good closer. Have patience.

Paul Safsel
Pelham, New York

The perfect candidate

When I first came across James Ridgeway's "John Kerry Must Go" I thought I was reading something written before the Iowa caucuses. During the months prior to people actually casting ballots, Senator Kerry's candidacy was written off by many a wise pundit who apparently didn't have anything else to write. But what happened? Kerry went on to win all but two primaries and caucuses.

I'd like to remind Ridgeway that Bill Clinton was polling third heading into the 1992 Democratic convention. And, as to Senator Kerry's personal wealth, I suppose Ridgeway would have proposed that FDR and JFK disqualify themselves as well. If Kerry "doesn't have what it takes to win," then why has the Bush campaign raised a $200 million war chest and spent nearly $60 million of it in the last six weeks on character assassination and distortion?

Kerry is not going to drop out. We still have six months to go. For a Democrat, he enters the fray with unprecedented financial resources. He waged a national campaign during the primaries. That gives him an infrastructure for assembling a winning coalition. He's already leading in many of the battleground states. He has united Democrats across regional, racial, policy, and ideological lines. Polls show a tight race. Reality suggests a tough race. This campaign is not for the faint of heart, nor those who are only willing to support the perfect candidate. Besides, like beauty, the perfect candidate is in the eye of the beholder.

Kerry is the perfect candidate to beat George Bush. Kerry's strong on national security and anti-terrorism; he's an ardent advocate of multilateralism in foreign policy; he's staunch on returning to fiscal responsibility, job creation, diversity, meaningful health care, education reform, choice, and moderate judicial appointments. Isn't preventing a second Bush term what this election is really all about? This can only be done by electing John Kerry.

Gregory W. Meeks
Member of Congress, Sixth District, Queens
National Co-Chair, John Kerry for President Washington, D.C.

Nader campaign HQ, 36 Cooper Square

I used to read the Voice regularly but will no longer after your hit article for Nader. Kerry still leads most polls. You have become nothing but Nader shills. Very disappointing, and the article to which I am referring reads like it's from a high school newspaper. Pathetic.

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