Urban Agenda -- 21st Century Political Renewal

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Reprinted w/permission-Washington Post Writers Group & the artist

Building a pro-city platform and Urban Agenda for the next Presidential campaign & locally.

Friday, September 01, 2006

Rocky Anderson, a possible pro-urban presidential candidate?

This blog entry appeared originally in Rebuilding Place in the Urban Space.

Rob Snyder sent this along, a speech by Salt Lake City Mayor Rocky Anderson about the U.S. role in Iraq and the current leadership by the President of the United States and his Administration. It was given yesterday.

I have a companion blog, Urban Agenda, that is supposed to be dedicated to creating a progressive urban agenda and a campaign to run a candidate in the presidential primaries on a pro-urban political platform.

It's been hard to find good candidates. Mayor Riley of Charleston is a bit old; John Norquist, ex-mayor of Milwaukee, has some baggage. But both are pro-city. Mayor Rocky Anderson of Salt Lake City came to my notice from a blogreader.

This speech today is quite interesting. "Tell us the truth...." A pretty compelling speech. I'd take him over many other candidates!

Video of the Speech.

Text of the Speech.

Also see this article from the Salt Lake City Deseret News, "Thousands gather in Salt Lake City to protest, praise Bush."

The protest was held in conjunction with the American Legion's annual meeting held in the city. (Given the strong Republican nature of the State of Utah, this is quite interesting...)

Interesting that this speech merits one paragraph in an article in today's Washington Post, Bush Takes His Case to Veterans, subtitled "War in Iraq Depicted as One Against Radical Islamic Terrorism."

It turns out that yesterday's Baltimore Sun had a longer story with a photo, that ran on page A2 (although I didn't read the paper til this morning...). It's from the LA Times, "Mayor leads anti-war protest ahead of Bush's visit to Utah: Republicans launch ad campaign denouncing Salt Lake City official." From the article:

The Utah Republican Party sponsored radio advertisements around the state denouncing the mayor and those advocating what the party calls "cut-and-run" tactics in Iraq. The mayor's office hired three temporary workers to answer the more than 1,600 calls it received over two days. Anderson's spokesman said the Republican radio campaign stirred up not just opposition, but also new demonstrations of support for the mayor's anti-Bush views.

The city's position as a Democratic island in a very Republican state notwithstanding, the controversy underscores the extreme sensitivity surrounding the war - not just in more typically liberal communities but in a state where the National Guard has contributed heavily to the force in Iraq, and one that gave Bush 71 percent of its vote two years ago.

No mention, it appears, in the New York Times.

Anderson gave a strong speech. Not mealy-mouthed at all. From the speech:

"We are here today because of our values. We love our country. We cherish the freedoms and liberties of our country. And we don't call those who speak out against our nations leaders, unpatriotic or unamerican or appeasers of fascists as we heard from our incompetent Secretary of Defense yesterday. We have good wholesome, family values."
Anti-President Bush rally, Salt Lake City
Thousands of protestors march down State Street to the Utah federal building during an anti-President Bush rally Wednesday, Aug. 30, 2006, in Salt Lake City. They presented the offices of senators Orrin Hatch and Bob Bennett, and Rep. Rob Bishop, all R-Utah, with a symbolic indictment of President Bush and Congress for the war in Iraq. (AP Photo/Douglas C. Pizac)

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