- The Washington Times - Tuesday, August 8, 2006


Rep. Cynthia A. McKinney, the Georgia Democrat who made headlines this year for a scuffle with a U.S. Capitol Police officer, is locked in a runoff for her district’s Democratic nomination today.

Primaries are also being held today in Colorado, Connecticut, Missouri and Michigan. Mrs. McKinney is trying to counter her opponent’s charge that the six-term congresswoman is “the candidate of polarization and divisiveness.”

Mrs. McKinney, the state’s first black woman in Congress, once said the Bush administration had advance knowledge of the September 11, 2001, terror attacks. In March, Mrs. McKinney struck a Capitol Police officer who did not recognize her and tried to stop her from entering a House office building.

A grand jury in Washington declined to indict her, but she was forced to apologize in the full House. She drew less than 50 percent of the vote in last month’s primary and will face off against Hank Johnson, the former commissioner of DeKalb County, which encompasses much of Atlanta.

In a radio ad, Mrs. McKinney acknowledges that she’s “not perfect. But I’ve worked hard, told you the truth and I’m not afraid to speak truth to power,” she said.

In other primaries today:

cIn Colorado’s conservative 5th District, voters will choose among six Republican candidates to succeed retiring 10-term Republican Rep. Joel Hefley. The winner will face Democratic Air Force veteran Jay Fawcett. In another race, three Democrats are competing to replace Rep. Bob Beauprez, the Republican nominee for governor, as 7th District representative. Rick O’Donnell, the state’s higher education commissioner, will be the Republican candidate.

cIn Michigan, Republican Rep. Joe Schwarz faces a serious challenge from former state lawmaker Tim Walberg. Mr. Schwarz, a liberal Republican, is backed by President Bush, Arizona Sen. John McCain and the National Rifle Association. But the race has been a struggle over Republican principles. Outside groups have spent more than $1 million on the race.

• Missouri Republican Sen. Jim Talent and Democratic challenger Claire McCaskill, the state auditor, are expected to win their party’s primaries. Voters will also decide whether to renew a 22-year-old sales tax to fund state parks and other conservation initiatives.

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