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A Summary of Cynthia McKinney

 updated September 14, 2010

Cynthia McKinney

Cynthia Ann McKinney is Georgia's first African-American Congresswoman and an internationally known advocate for voting rights, human rights, and the strengthening of business ties between Africa and the United States.

This article contians information about Cynthia McKinney, including an audio interview and a video clip of her confronting Donald Rumsfeld about the United States Government's involvement in human trafficking among other issues, the documentary film ”American Blackout,” a summarized biography, and more.

Cynthia McKinney: ”Global Resistance, Local Action, and Vision”
October 11, 2009
Former Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney delivered remarks at the Vers La Verité Conference in Paris, October 10, 2009, commenting about the hypocrisy of Barack Obama being awarded the Nobel Peace Prize while at the same time expanding the war machine of the United States. She mentioned his expansion of weapons of war such as implementing new "bunker buster" technologies, increasing troops in Afghanistan, not ruling out military action against Iran, and issues of Honduras being besieged by U.S. trained paramilitaries and snipers in support of coup leaders over democratically elected leaders.

FBI White Supremacist ”Agent Provocateur” Hal Turner Publicly Urged Lynching of Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney
August 26, 2009
A former FBI funded white supremacist ”agent provocateur” Hal Turner has been arrested for publishing death threats against Connecticut legislators and Illinois judges, and previously while employed by the FBI Turner had publicly advocated lynching Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney but never faced legal action for doing so.

Turner worked for the FBI between 2002 and 2007 as a ”provocateur” to spy on radical white supremacist organizations, and is attempting to claim that his recent actions are legal despite no longer being employed by the FBI.

Turner advocated on his website in 2006:

”Cynthia McKinney is a violent, black, racist, b*tch whose official re-election campaign web site calls white people ‘crackers’. As such, on this Wednesday evening’s show I will ask the question ‘Given the prevalence of black crime in America, would it serve the public good to LYNCH Congresswoman McKinney within the next few weeks, while she’s on the campaign trail, so as to send an unmistakable message to other blacks: white people are tired of your bullsh*t, behave or die.”

The story of Turner’s recent arrest has been covered by Wired and The Southern Poverty Law Center— both without mentioning his previous threats against McKinney.

This story is reprinted here as a part of a larger article A Summary of Cynthia McKinney.

Following are excerpts from an email sent by former Congresswoman Cynthia Mckinney to the SF Bay View on August 23, 2009, describing the circumstances of a death threat made against her by Hal Turner:


”I am in the Bay Area and rocking with the San Francisco Bay View newspaper. But something quite insidious is happening and I think you should know immediately how it involves my friends and me.

”Hot on the heels of my learning that the Georgia Green Party might have been described by the U.S. Government as a ‘terrorist organization,’ it has just now come to my attention that a ‘journalist’ who suggested that I be lynched was actually being paid by our own government to say that. Now, when I reported it to the FBI, how in the world was I to know that he was at that time on the FBI’s payroll? Interesting that charges stem from his comments against Connecticut lawmakers and Illinois judges, but not from the threat made against me, a sitting Member of Congress at the time! I wonder why. To whom can I or any other innocent citizen turn when the government, itself, is the instigator?

”John Judge, my Congressional staffer, is the one who reported the threat. Here is what John just wrote, along with the article that reports that Turner was on the FBI payroll at the time the threat was made against me, according to Turner’s attorney. See the green highlights below:

”John Judge wrote:

‘This is the guy who announced a program topic suggesting that Cynthia McKinney be lynched on her way to the polls to vote in 2006 and published her campaign office address on the website. He asked how she would look swinging at the end of a rope and what message it would send to other ”uppity” Blacks. I called NJ Homeland Security and FBI at the time since he related it as a death threat. The FBI agent I spoke to said, ”We know all about Mr. Turner.” Looks like they did. Now they say he was trained as an agent provocateur by the FBI to get others to participate in illegal acts ..

[From an Associated Press story: ‘Attorney: FBI trained NJ blogger to incite others’, ”by Katie Nelson, Aug. 18, 2009]


”Prosecutors have acknowledged that Turner was an informant who spied on radical right-wing organizations, but the defense has said Turner was not working for the FBI when he allegedly made threats against Connecticut legislators and wrote that three federal judges in Illinois deserved to die.

”’But if you compare anything that he did say when he was operating, there was no difference. No difference whatsoever,’ Orozco said.”

[From Wikipedia:] ”Harold Charles ‘Hal’ Turner is an American white nationalist and white supremacist from North Bergen, New Jersey. He was arrested in June 2009 over alleged threats to politicians, and is currently jailed without bail. Prior to Turner’s arrest his program, The Hal Turner Show, was a webcast from his home once a week, and it depended on listener donations.

”Turner promotes antisemitism (including the rounding up and killing of Jews), he opposes the existence of the state of Israel and he denies the Holocaust.

”According to the Associated Press, Hal Turner has exposed through his attorney that he worked for the FBI from 2002 to 2007 as an ‘agent provocateur’ and ‘his job was basically to publish information which would cause other parties to act in a manner which would lead to their arrest.’


Audio: Cynthia McKinney speaks with radio host Alex Jones
View audio page  >>
recorded February 14, 2006, running time 39 minutes
Radio Host Alex Jones speaks with Georgia Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney, discussing a variety of important issues including Haliburton subsidiary DynCorp's involvement in human trafficking, the FEMA induced Hurricane Katrina disaster, election fraud, the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, and more.

Cynthia McKinney Speaking at the 2004 Project Censored Awards

  view individual page  |   view in popup windowRunning Time: 14 minutes 46 seconds  

In a speech at the 2004 Project Censored Awards, Cynthia McKinney asks: ”Who are we and who is responsible for what we have become?”— Speaking about corruption of the Bush Administration, election fraud, and the importance of speaking out about what is right, among many other issues.

After the speech she discusses specific instances of election fraud, the media's engaging in unfair and biased tactics against her and others, the military contractor Dyncorp being awarded no-bid contracts in Iraq, and the fact that there is more to fear than only the Bush Administration— but rather the system itself.

Read a full transcript of the speech at this link.

Cynthia McKinney Confronting Donald Rumsfeld

This section details Cynthia Mckinney's March 11, 2005 confrontation of Donald Rumsfeld broadcast on C-SPAN, including summarized supporting references for the issues of US Government involvement in human trafficking and trillions of dollars missing from the Pentagon.

  view individual page  |   view in popup windowRunning Time: 8 minutes 57 seconds  

In this nine minute video clip, Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney confronts Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld on Halliburton’s subsidiary DynCorp’s involvement in human trafficking, the Pentagon’s unaccounted for Trillions, and the 9/11 wargames at the House Hearing on FY06 Dept. of Defense Budget, March 11, 2005.

View an in depth explanation of the issues Cynthia McKinney is speaking about, including an examination of the United States Government's involvement in human trafficking on the article A Summary of Cynthia McKinney.

Following is a partial transcript of this video, the full transcript may be viewed at:

“Transcript of Representative Cynthia McKinney’s Exchange with Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Richard Myers, and Under Secretary of Defense (Comptroller) Tina Jonas, March 11th, 2005”

Cynthia McKinney: “I watched President Bush deliver a moving speech at the United Nations in September 2003, in which he mentioned the crisis of the sex trade. The President called for the punishment of those involved in this horrible business. But at the very moment of that speech, DynCorp was exposed for having been involved in the buying and selling of young women and children. While all of this was going on, DynCorp kept the Pentagon contract to administer the smallpox and anthrax vaccines, and is now working on a plague vaccine through the Joint Vaccine Acquisition Program. Mr. Secretary, is it [the] policy of the U.S. Government to reward companies that traffic in women and little girls?”

Cynthia McKinney: “Finally Mr. Secretary, after the last Hearing, I thought that my office was promised a written response to my question regarding the four wargames on September 11th. I have not yet received that response, but would like for you to respond to the questions that I’ve put to you today. And then I do expect the written response to my previous question - hopefully by the end of the week.”

Donald Rumsfeld: “Thank you, Representative. First, the answer to your first question is, no, absolutely not, the policy of the United States Government is clear, unambiguous, and opposed to the activities that you described. The second question —”

Cynthia McKinney: “Well how do you explain the fact that DynCorp and its successor companies have received and continue to receive government contracts?”

Donald Rumsfeld: “I would have to go and find the facts, but there are laws and rules and regulations with respect to government contracts, and there are times that corporations do things they should not do, in which case they tend to be suspended for some period; there are times then that the - under the laws and the rules and regulations for the - passed by the Congress and implemented by the Executive branch - that corporations can get off of - out of the penalty box if you will, and be permitted to engage in contracts with the government. They’re generally not barred in perpetuity -”

Cynthia McKinney: “This contract - this company - was never in the penalty box. If you could proceed to my second question, please..”


Donald Rumsfeld:  “I'm advised by Dr. Chu that it was not the corporation that was engaged in the activities you characterized but I'm told it was an employee of the corporation, and it was some years ago in the Balkans that that took place.”

Cynthia McKinney: ”It's my understanding that it continues to take place, and..”

Donald Rumsfeld: ”Is that right? Well if you could give me information to that effect..”

Cynthia McKinney: ”I am sure you are interested in all the information that I have, and I will be more than happy to provide it for you.”

Donald Rumsfeld: ”Good, thank you.”

Hub Article:  A Summary of Human Trafficking by the United States Government and the United Nations

Relatives of these Nepalese people had been promised hotel jobs in Jordan, but were sent to Iraq to work as forced labor for Haliburton where they were kidnapped and killed. (photo by Jose More, Chicago Tribune)
Relatives of these Nepalese people had been promised hotel jobs in Jordan, but were sent to Iraq to work as forced labor for Haliburton where they were kidnapped and killed. (photo by Jose More, Chicago Tribune)

This article is a is a summarized collection of mainstream news articles and video clips speaking about the issue of the United States Government and the United Nation’s involvement in the human trafficking and sex slavery industries.

Issues explained include Hiliburton’s reliance on using human trafficking brokers for supplying slave labor in Iraq, and past issues of the US military contractor Dyncorp, NATO, and the UN’s involvement in human trafficking for sex slavery in Eastern Europe and Africa.

View the entire article >>
September 14, 2010

Selected information from this article:

October 9, 2005 - The Chicago Tribune’s ”Pipeline to Peril” multi-part article

In October of 2005, the Chicago Tribune published a multi-part special report ”Pipeline to Peril,” reporting on Halliburton subsidiaries’ widespread reliance on making use of firms specializing in human trafficking for supplying cheap labor for meeting the demands of the privatization of military support operations in Iraq.

From the article:

”The 'Pipeline to Peril' series reveals how some subcontractors used deception and coercion to recruit foreigners to work on U.S. bases in Iraq. The series told the story of 12 Nepalese, some of whom thought they had gotten hotel jobs in Jordan. Instead, all 12 were sent to Iraq, where they were kidnapped and killed.”

June 26, 2002 - An article by Robert Capps entitled ”Outside the Law,” speaks about KBR related sex slavery in Bosnia ( part 1 of 2 )

This June 26, 2002 article on talks about Ben Johnson, a Dyncorp helicopter mechanic stationed in Bosnia who was fired for reporting coworkers who have been purchasing passports of women and girls as young as twelve years old who were being trafficked from poor Eastern European countries such Russia, Moldova and Romania for the purpose of forced prostitution.

From the article:

”Pending lawsuits allege that U.S. military contractors on duty in Bosnia bought and 'owned' young women. But the accused men have never been — and will never be — brought to justice.” ...

April 25, 2002 - London Telegraph’s report ”Teenagers used for sex by UN in Bosnia.”

UN Human Rights Investigator Kathryn Bolkovac

Summary of the article:

Human rights investigator Kathryn Bolkovac has filed a lawsuit against her employer, the US-based agency DynCorp, which is registered with the State Department to provide American police officers to work on humanitarian and peacekeeping duties. She claims that she was fired for exposing the sexual abuse of Bosnian women by her United Nations colleagues, and told a British employment tribunal that girls as young as 15 were offered for sex.

The former American policewoman claims she was sacked because she sent an email to Jacques Paul Klein, the chief of UN mission in Bosnia-Hercegovina, which highlighted the sexual exploitation of women by those who had been sent to protect them from the sex trade. She was demoted and removed from front line policing after emailing the claims that ”.. women and girls were handed over to bar owners and told to perform sex acts to pay for their costumes, and the women who refused were locked in rooms and withheld food and outside contact for days or weeks. After this time they are told to dance naked on table tops and sit with clients. If the women still refuse to perform sex acts with the customers they are beaten and raped in the rooms by the bar owners and their associates. They are told if they go to the police they will be arrested for prostitution and being an illegal immigrant.”

Giving evidence to the tribunal, Mrs Bolkovac said she had discovered ”extensive use of brothels” by UN police and other peacekeepers. She said she also found that international staff were helping local police to sell women for the sex trade and she feared this was being ”covered up.”

”The victims of trafficking were reporting extensive use of the brothels and other criminal acts by the international community and international police task force,” she said.

She claimed that Mike Stiers, the international police task force’s deputy commissioner, had flippantly dismissed victims of human trafficking as ”just prostitutes.”

This attitude led many members of the peacekeeping mission to believe it was acceptable to use sex slaves and go to brothels, she said.

Trillions of Dollars Missing from the Pentagon

This section details the reported trillions of dollars "missing" from the Pentagon, presumably due to fraud or waste. Donald Rumsfeld gave an announcement on September 10, 2001, the day before the 9/11 attacks, claiming that $2.3 Trillion "could not be tracked" due to computers not being able to properly communicate with each other. In later statements he claims the issue has been partially resolved as the number is reduced to $700 billion.

Whatever the amount of the money missing from the Pentagon actually is, it is a substantial amount and all evidence shows the historically notorious habits of fraud and waste at the Pentagon are continuing to escalate unchecked.

This section includes a clip from Robert Greenwald's film "Iraq for Sale: The War Profiteers," showing the various frauds defense contractors make use of, also included in this section is a summary of Donald Rumsfeld's announcement of the missing Trillions on September 10, 2001, as well as an examination of the accountants who died in the Pentagon attack on 9/11, giving the Army an excuse to not publish a "stand alone" financial statement for 2001 and enabling potential large scale fraud.

Iraq for Sale - Banned Excerpts
  view individual page  |   view in popup windowRunning Time: 4 minutes 36 seconds  

View a four minute video clip from the film ”Iraq for Sale: The War Profiteers,” detailing specific examples of excessive waste and fraud by the United States Government relating to the Iraq war.The documentary explains the ”Cost Plus” program, which encourages contractors to run up the costs of their activities due to the contractors getting a percentage of the end result.

Interviews with soldiers are shown explaining that they were required to have their laundry done by KBR, which bills the government $100 per bag, as well as loads of expensive computers and other equipment commonly being burned in pits while still in their unopened boxes. Also described is the common practice of destroying new trucks worth as much as eighty thousand dollars for any excuse whatsoever, such as a damaged motor due to the use of incorrect oil filters, or even due to a flat tire.

Donald Rumsfeld Announcing Trillions Missing from the Pentagon
  view individual page  |   view in popup windowRunning Time: 3 minutes 10 seconds  

On a few occasions before the September 11 attacks, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld has made reference to over $2.3 trillion in transactions at the Pentagon which ”cannot be tracked,” presumably meaning missing over the years due to fraud and waste. In later statements he claims the issue has been partially resolved as the number is reduced to $700 billion.

Partial transcript from the above video ( link to the full transcript is here ):

”On Sept. 10 [ the day before the 9/11 attacks ], Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld declared war. Not on foreign terrorists, 'the adversary's closer to home. It's the Pentagon bureaucracy,' he said.”

'According to some estimates we cannot track $2.3 trillion in transactions,' Rumsfeld admitted.”

$2.3 trillion— that's $8,000 for every man, woman and child in America. To understand how the Pentagon can lose track of trillions, consider the case of one military accountant who tried to find out what happened to a mere $300 million.”

”Minnery, a former Marine turned whistle-blower, is risking his job by speaking out for the first time about the millions he noticed were missing from one defense agency's balance sheets. Minnery tried to follow the money trail, even crisscrossing the country looking for records.”

”'The director looked at me and said 'Why do you care about this stuff?' It took me aback, you know? My supervisor asking me why I care about doing a good job,' said Minnery.”

”'They have to cover it up,' he said. 'That's where the corruption comes in. They have to cover up the fact that they can't do the job.'”

The Documentary Film ”American Blackout”

  view individual page  |   view in popup windowRunning Time: 4 minutes  

View the four minute trailer for the film ”American Blackout”, hosted by Cynthia McKinney and speaking about issues of election fraud via voter disenfranchisement and through the use of fraudulent voting machines, as well as speaking about issues of media corruption. Featuring Congressional members John Conyers, John Lewis, Stephanie Tubbs-Jones, Bernie Sanders and journalists Greg Palast and Bob Fitrakis.

View the full length documentary.

A Biography of Cynthia McKinney

The following information is partially taken from Cynthia McKinney’s Wikipedia Page.


"Cynthia Ann McKinney (born March 17, 1955) is an American politician from the U.S. state of Georgia. A Democrat, McKinney served in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1993 to 2003, and returned in 2005, representing Georgia’s fourth congressional district. The district includes most of DeKalb County, a largely suburban county east of Atlanta, as well as adjacent sections of Gwinnett County and Rockdale County."

"McKinney was born in Atlanta, the daughter of Billy McKinney, one of Atlanta’s first African-American law enforcement officers and a former Georgia State Representative, and Leola McKinney, a retired nurse. She currently lives in the Atlanta suburb of Stone Mountain. She is a Roman Catholic, one of the few members of that faith to have electoral success in heavily Protestant Georgia."

"She earned a B.A. in International Relations from the University of Southern California, a Masters of Art in Law and Diplomacy from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, and she is expected to complete a Ph.D. at University of California, Berkeley."

"Her political career began in 1986 when her father, Billy McKinney, a representative in the Georgia House of Representatives, submitted his daughter’s name as a write-in candidate for the Georgia state house. She received about 40 percent of the popular vote despite the fact that she lived in Jamaica at the time with then-husband Coy Grandison (with whom she had a son, Coy McKinney, now age 20). In 1988, McKinney ran for the same seat and won, making the McKinneys the first father and daughter to simultaneously serve in the Georgia state house."

"McKinney immediately challenged House rules requiring women to wear dresses by wearing slacks. In 1991, she spoke out against the Persian Gulf War, causing many legislators to walk out in protest at her remarks."

"In the 1992 election, McKinney was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives as the member of Congress from the newly-created 11th District, a 64 percent black-majority district stretching from Atlanta to Savannah. She was the first African-American woman to represent Georgia in the House. She was handily reelected in 1994."

"In 1995 the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Miller v. Johnson that the 11th district was an unconstitutional gerrymander because the boundaries were racially discriminatory. McKinney’s district was subsequently renumbered the 4th and redrawn to take in almost all of DeKalb County, prompting a response of outrage from McKinney. She asserted that it was a racially-discriminatory ruling, given the fact that the Supreme Court had previously ruled that Texas’s 6th district, which is 91 percent white, was constitutional."

"The new 4th, however, was no less Democratic than the 11th, and McKinney was reelected from this district in 1996, 1998 and 2000 with no substantive opposition. McKinney lost her seat in 2002 after losing the primary election (details below). She regained her seat in 2004, when it was open due to Denise Majette’s run for U.S. Senate. In 2006, she was opposed in the Democratic primary by Hank Johnson and John Coyne III. She led the July 18 primary, with Johnson coming in second, but the race continued to an August 8 runoff, because no candidate received 50 percent of the votes cast. McKinney lost the primary election runoff 59 percent to 41 percent to Johnson on August 8, 2006: Hank Johnson 41,178 59% Cynthia McKinney 28,832 41%."

911 Commission and Goverment Secrecy Issues

"In a 2002 interview on Pacifica Radio McKinney questioned the Bush administration’s possible prior knowledge of the September 11, 2001 attacks:"

"We know there were numerous warnings of the events to come on September 11... Those engaged in unusual stock trades immediately before September 11 knew enough to make millions of dollars from United and American airlines, certain insurance and brokerage firms’ stocks. What did the Administration know, and when did it know it about the events of September 11? Who else knew and why did they not warn the innocent people of New York who were needlessly murdered?"

— “Flashpoints” with Dennis Bernstein, KFPA Pacifica Radio

"These remarks provoked criticism, and many Democrats distanced themselves from McKinney’s statements. On April 12, 2002, McKinney issued a statement saying that “I am not aware of any evidence showing that President Bush or members of his administration have personally profited from the attacks of 9-11. A complete investigation might reveal this to be the case.

“Initially, McKinney kept a low profile upon her return to Congress. However, on July 22, 2005, the first anniversary of the release of the 9/11 Commission Report, McKinney held a well-attended congressional briefing on Capitol Hill to address outstanding issues regarding the September 11, 2001, attacks. The day-long briefing featured family members of victims, scholars, former intelligence officers and others who critiqued the 9/11 Commission account of 9/11 and its recommendations. The four morning panels purported to address flaws, omissions, and the lack of historical and political analysis in the commission’s report. Three afternoon panels critiqued the commission’s recommendations in the areas of foreign and domestic policy, and intelligence reform. An Atlanta Journal-Constitution editorial maintained that the purpose of the event was to discuss whether or not the Bush administration was involved in the 9/11 attacks, expressing surprise that McKinney was once again taking on the issue which was widely believed to have been the one that cost her House seat. The Journal-Constitution refused to publish McKinney’s reply.”

“McKinney’s interest in 9/11 relates specifically to what she expresses as her opposition to excessive government secrecy. She has submitted to Congress two versions of the same bill, the 'MLK Records Act' (one in 2003, the other in 2005,) which, if signed into law, would release all currently sealed files concerning the 1968 assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr.. These records were sealed in 1978 and are not due to be declassified until the year 2028. Likewise, the 9/11 Commission has sealed all the notes and transcripts of some 2,000 interviews, all the forensic evidence, and both classified and non-classified documents used in compiling its final report until January, 2009. Documents relating to the death of rapper Tupac Shakur, which McKinney has taken an active interest in, would be released under another bill introduced by Rep. McKinney. In a statement, McKinney explained her reason for the bill: 'The public has the right to know because he was a well-known figure. There is intense public interest in the life and death of Tupac Shakur...'"

Anti-war, Human Rights, Impeachment Efforts

Until 2000, McKinney served on the House International Relations Committee, where she was the highest-ranking Democrat on the Human Rights Subcommittee. McKinney felt that it was important that US policy reflect a deep respect for human rights, so she worked on legislation to stop conventional weapons transfers to governments which are undemocratic or fail to respect human rights...

On November 18, 2005, McKinney was one of only 3 (out of 406) to vote for H.R. 571, introduced by House Armed Services Committee chairman Duncan Hunter, Chairman of the Armed Services Committee, on which McKinney sits. Hunter, a Republican, offered this resolution calling for an immediate withdrawal of U.S. forces in Iraq in place of John Murtha’s H.J.Res. 73, which called for redeployment 'at the earliest possible date...'"

McKinney hosted the first delegation of Afro-Latinos from Central and South America and worked with the World Bank and the U.S. State Department to recognize Afro-Latinos. She stood with Aboriginals against Australian mining companies; and with the U’wa people of Colombia in their fight to save their sacred land from oil rigs.

Rep. McKinney is a co-sponsor of Rep. John Conyers’s H.R. 635, which would create a Select Committee to look into potential grounds for the impeachment of President Bush. On January 20th, 2006, she also signed a statement by the group The World Can’t Wait called Drive Out the Bush Regime. On December 9th McKinney submitted legislation before Congress for the Impeachment of President Bush."

Hurricane Katrina

"McKinney has been an advocate for victims of Hurricane Katrina and a critic of the government’s response."

“Despite the Democratic Party leadership’s call for a boycott, McKinney was an active participant in the Select Bipartisan Committee to Investigate the Preparation for and Response to Hurricane Katrina. She sat as a guest along with only a few other Democrats. In questioning Department of Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff, McKinney referred to a news story in which the owners of a nursing home were charged with negligent homicide for abandoning 34 clients who died in the flood waters. McKinney asked Chertoff: 'Mr. Secretary, if the nursing home owners are arrested for negligent homicide, why shouldn’t you also be arrested for negligent homicide?'"

The "Capitol Police Incident"

On the morning of March 29, 2006, McKinney entered the Longworth House Office Building’s southeast entrance and proceeded past the check point, walking around the metal detector. Members of Congress have identifying lapel pins and are not required to pass through metal detectors. The officers present failed to recognize her as a Member of Congress because she was not wearing the appropriate identification. She proceeded westward down the ground floor hallway, and about half way down the hallway was grabbed by United States Capitol Police officer Paul McKenna, who states that he had been calling after her 'Ma’am, Ma’am!' McKinney responded by hitting the police officer.

McKinney was criticized in the media for failing to wear her pin on the morning of March 29, 2006, with critics charging that her failure to do so led to the confrontation. Many other Members do not wear the pin, even after the whole McKinney-McKenna affair...

“McKinney admitted that she was not wearing her pin that morning, but opined that the police responsible for protecting lawmakers should recognize the 435 members of Congress on sight and claimed to have shown her Congressional identification badge.”

.. McKinney garnered little support even among fellow Democrats. Not one Congressional Democrat chose to join her at a news conference to discuss the situation at Howard University... Initially stating on March 31st that 'wouldn’t make a big deal' out of the incident, Minority Leader Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Cal.) later said on April 5 that she found 'it hard to see any set of facts that would justify striking a police officer,' and McKinney’s fellow Georgia Democrat, Rep. John Lewis, told McKinney that 'she needs to lower the temperature and stop holding press conferences.' Outside of Capitol Hill, the Sarasota Democratic Party withdrew from a rally at which McKinney was due to speak.”

Within a few days of the first reports, McKinney had been variously described as a 'crazy bitch', 'race baiter', 'freak', etc. Some columns even went so far as to analyze her hairstyle in a negative light and question the quick participation of Harry Belafonte, who is generally regarded as a political polarizing agent and also the recipient of frequent negative commentary due to his public statements.

"She has repeatedly stressed that in her view the incident arose from the police failure to recognize her face, suggesting that in her view the above-mentioned pattern of incidents in which Capitol Police failed to recognize her as a Member of Congress had to do with a general tendency by police in the United States to engage in racial profiling of blacks, where blacks are stereotyped as more likely to commit crime than other groups in society, and therefore tend to handle blacks more roughly."

“On April 6, 2006, after the grand jury was convened to investigate, the Associated Press reported that McKinney had expressed 'sincere regret' for the altercation and offered an apology to the House. ‘There should not have been any physical contact in this incident’..”

The 2002 Primary

"In 2002, McKinney was defeated in the Democratic primary by DeKalb County judge Denise Majette. It was stunning by itself that Majette, who had never run in a partisan contest before, was able to unseat the seemingly entrenched McKinney. However, Majette won by an overwhelming margin, garnering 58% of the vote to McKinney’s 42%."

"McKinney protested the result in court, claiming that thousands of Republicans, knowing they had no realistic chance of defeating her in November, had participated in the Democratic primary to vote against McKinney in revenge for her anti-Bush administration views and allegations of possible voter fraud in Florida in the 2000 Presidential Election. Like twenty other states, Georgia operates an open primary; voters do not claim a political party when they register to vote, and may participate in whichever party’s primary election they choose."

".. The district court dismissed the case, noting that the plaintiffs had presented no evidence in support of [ Equal Protection and VRA claims ], and lacked standing to bring [the First Amendment claim.]"

".. On appeal, the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals upheld this result. .. On October 18, 2004, the Supreme Court brought an end to the litigation, denying certiorari without comment."

The 2006 Primary Runnoff

McKinney finished first in the July 18, 2006 Democratic primary, edging DeKalb County Commissioner Hank Johnson 47.1% to 44.4%, with a third candidate receiving 8.5%. However, since McKinney failed to get at least 50% of the vote, she and Johnson were forced into a run-off. McKinney had been heavily favored to win, so her narrow margin surprised observers. Johnson picked up support because he seemed to have a real possibility of winning.

“In the runoff of August 8, 2006, although there were about 8,000 more voters than in the primary, McKinney received about the same number of votes as in July. Johnson won with 41,178 votes (59%) to McKinney’s 28,832 (41%).

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