Taking Our Votes For Granted!
Send a Message -- Make your vote count on April 27th
by Pennsylvania State Representative Harold James
April 7, 2004
The following statement by Philadelphia State Rep. Harold James
was released to the LaRouche in 2004 Presidential campaign on April
7, endorsing Lyndon LaRouche for President. Rep. James will be joined
at his press conference by supporters and community activists.
Currently, the Democratic Party has begun to rally behind the banner
of Senator John Kerry, who is no doubt a better man than what we
have in there. However, the Democratic Party is continuing to take
many of its leading constituency groups for granted, such as African-Americans,
other minorities, labor, and others. Our concerns, at this point,
are not being adequately represented by the Kerry campaign. We must
remedy this problem, so that we can mobilize a massive turnout of
the Democratic Party base, and remove the Bush/Cheney administration
from power this November.
For these reasons, and after serious soul searching and consideration,
I have decided to extend my personal endorsement to the candidacy
of Lyndon H. LaRouche, Jr. in the April 27 Democratic presidential
primary here in Pennsylvania. Fifteen percent of the vote or more
for Mr. LaRouche in any congressional district, will elect LaRouche
delegates to the Democratic Party national convention, and guarantee
that our voices will be heard at the very highest levels of politics
in this country.
This is how we can make our votes count, and send the most powerful
message to Party leaders that our issues and concerns must be addressed.
As the distinguished African-American scholar Ron Walters has argued,
"In order to move the system, Blacks have to look after their
interests first, not the Party's. That requires both courage and
savvy. We must decide whether this time, it is worth pushing the
envelope to make Kerry accountable or to trust him and the system
to work it out and look after our interests. Our history tells us
not to trust the system, to fight for every inch of advantage and
to be proud of that fight."
Note that Mr. LaRouche is one of only three active candidates
that will be on the primary ballot here, (Rev. Sharpton is not running
in Pennsylvania) and has one of the largest bases of support of
any candidate. As of the Federal Election Commission's latest March
2004 report, Mr. LaRouche leads all of the Democratic presidential
candidates in the cumulative number of individual itemized contributions.
LaRouche has 37,867 individual itemized contributions as compared
to 35,337 for John Kerry. The statistics are even more remarkable
in Pennsylvania, where LaRouche has 2,942 such contributions, to
Kerry's 926! By the time of the Democratic National Convention,
Mr. LaRouche will have appeared on the ballot in 32 states and the
District of Columbia. Also, as of the February FEC report, Mr. LaRouche
had raised $6,735,378, and he qualified for federal matching funds.
When it comes to the concerns of our communities, Mr. LaRouche's
track record has been second to none. Over the years, when I have
asked Mr. LaRouche to become involved with issues that will improve
the conditions of my community, he has responded, not with words
alone, but with action.
Several years ago, when it was revealed that Black elected officials
were being systematically targeted and harassed by the Department
of Justice, Mr. LaRouche sponsored hearings and circulated crucial
material exposing that horrible injustice. Those hearings were dedicated
to the memory of our late, great, state representative Dave Richardson,
whose tragic, untimely death precluded his planned participation.
When the Democratic National Committee failed to sponsor hearings
to establish a fair and just platform in the 2000 campaign, Mr.
LaRouche called for Democratic platform hearings. My colleagues
and I participated in these historic hearings which addressed the
critical issues of health care, jobs, economic injustice, and government
When I asked Mr. LaRouche to help last fall, after it was discovered
that Attorney General Ashcroft had authorized the wiretapping of
the office of Philadelphia Mayor John Street, in an attempt to influence
the outcome of the election, Mr LaRouche responded. He personally
supported Mayor Street, and authorized hundreds of young people
to help in that election. That effort helped to insure the mayor's
re-election by a landslide. While I invited all of the Democratic
presidential candidates at that time to speak out against that injustice,
only two candidates, Mr. LaRouche and former Senator Carol Moseley
Several years ago, when Washington DC general hospital was being
shut down as a prelude to the closing of trauma centers and full
service hospitals in urban areas across the country, Mr. LaRouche
took up the challenge to defend public health in the nation's capital.
I joined that fight. Today, Mr. LaRouche is pledged to upgrade our
health care as a national security issue of the highest magnitude,
and I salute him on that. Mr. LaRouche has championed the cause
of universal health care. Health care is a right for all Americans
and not a privilege for some.
In echoing the voice of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Mr.
LaRouche has called for defending the rights of America's forgotten
men and women, and promoting the general welfare of the entire nation.
Moreover, he has fought vigorously on behalf of the rights of
the forgotten men and women of the world. He has waged a relentless
campaign against the silent genocide which is ravaging Africa, while
others have failed to adequately address this issue.
Without Mr. LaRouche's input and delegates, I am concerned that
these issues will not be adequately raised or addressed at the Democratic
Party national convention in Boston this summer. This is why I personally
endorse his candidacy in the upcoming Pennsylvania primary, and
urge the community to cast their votes for Mr. LaRouche.
I am encouraging people to participate in a strategy whereby their
voices will be heard as we develop our agenda for inclusion, participation
and justice. Fifteen percent of the vote is the threshold in each
congressional district, which allows Mr. LaRouche to accumulate
delegates who will raise our agenda on the floor of the Democratic
convention. By addressing the crucial concerns of our community,
we can insure maximum voter education, participation and turnout
to guarantee victory for the Democratic Party and our presidential
nominee in November.
Representative James was elected to the Pennsylvania House
in 1988 from the 186th Legislative District in Philadelphia, and
is currently running for his ninth consecutive term. Former chairman
of the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus, he now serves on the
Executive Committee of the National Black Caucus of State Legislators
(NBCSL); he was appointed Special Assistant to the NBCSL President
and Region II Chairman, NBCSL (New York and Pennsylvania).
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