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After Fading From Public Attention, Kevorkian Announces Run For Congress
By Dave Reynolds, Inclusion Daily Express
March 13, 2008

PONTIAC, MICHIGAN--Jack Kevorkian is running for Congress.

Or, so he says.

The 79-year-old "Dr. Death" stopped by the Oakland County Clerk's office on Tuesday to pick up the petitions he needs to run for a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives.

The assisted suicide campaigner, who admitted to "helping" more than 130 people to die while pushing his public crusade, told the Oakland Press that he would be running as an Independent in Michigan's 9th Congressional district.

Kevorkian needs to collect at least 3,000 signatures on the petitions over the next three months in order to have his name on the ballot in November.

It turns out that Michigan law does not prevent convicted felons -- even those convicted of second-degree murder -- from running for public office.

Kevorkian served 8 years of a 10-year sentence for second-degree murder in the death of Thomas Youk, who had ALS, more commonly known as "Lou Gehrig's disease". At the time, Kevorkian was challenging a Michigan law that made it illegal to assist in a suicide. He even went so far as to videotape himself injecting Mr. Youk with a deadly drug, then sent the tape to CBS television's Mike Wallace to be aired on the "60 Minutes" news magazine.

Kevorkian was paroled last June after his attorney repeatedly said Kevorkian's medical problems were so bad he could not survive more than a few months.

Stephen Drake, of the disability rights group Not Dead Yet, had predicted months earlier that Kevorkian would experience a "miraculous recovery" upon his release.

In a weblog entry this week, Drake called Kevorkian's intentions "pretty transparent".

"After a brief flurry of media interest following his release from prison, he found it was hard to get media attention if he wasn't actively building a body count. He had hopes of making it big on the speaking circuit, but word has gotten out that he pretty much sucks as a speaker - especially a speaker who demands a $50,000 speaking fee."

Drake added that, if Kevorkian does get on the ballot, voters should demand to see his medical records: If his health was so poor that he could not serve two more years in prison, how could voters expect him to serve a full term in Congress?

Not Dead Yet and other groups have fought Kevorkian for nearly two decades. They have pointed out that most of those who Kevorkian "assisted" to die were not in the final stages of terminal illness, as he had reported, but instead had disabilities or feared they might acquire disabilities.

Dave Gorcyca, the Oakland County Prosecutor whose office prosecuted Kevorkian, said its hard to take Kevorkian's run seriously.

"It's probably more of a publicity stunt," Gorcyca said. "To call attention to himself is standard protocol for Jack when he doesn't have the limelight focused on him."

"Kevorkian planning run for Congress" (Oakland Press)
"'Dying' Kevorkian to Run for Congress" (Not Dead Yet)
"Jack Kevorkian: 'Dr. Death'" (Inclusion Daily Express Archives)

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