August 28th, 2007
05:24 PM ET
15 years ago

Kucinich: 'My wife's 29 - You draw your own conclusions'

Dennis Kucinich and his wife, Elizabeth.

Cedar Rapids, IOWA (CNN) - At the Livestrong Forum Monday, Democratic presidential hopeful Dennis Kucinich, D-Ohio, hit home the message of proper health education and personally shared the benefits he’s experienced since adopting a vegan lifestyle.

“I didn't need as much sleep. I had a lot more energy. I had a lot more clarity. I didn't have the health problems that I had previous to that,” the Ohio congressman said. “And as a result, I had a better quality of life.”

Kucinich added: “People want a president who is healthy because if you’re healthy you can think right.”

The White House hopeful emphasized his commitment to a “full disclosure” health education policy, where Americans are made aware of the nutrition value and health risks of the food they eat.

Referencing the epidemic of American obesity owing to such lack of information, Kucinich pushed for overall “health consciousness” that includes physical fitness, proper nutrition and access to health care.

“There is a direct connection not only between diet and health, but diet and the environment, diet and the economy. And so as president I'm going to be singularly positioned to be able to lead that discussion because I take in my own journey toward health based on my dietary choices,” he said.

While describing a diet free of animal products and an improved quality of life, MSNBC Hardball Host, Chris Matthews, ignited laughter when playfully remarking “And you married a young woman.”

Kucinich joked, “And I did. And my – hello. I mean, I'm 60 years old, I have a – my wife's 29. You draw your own conclusions. Diet helps.”

- CNN New Hampshire Producer Sareena Dalla

Filed under: Dennis Kucinich • New Hampshire
soundoff (52 Responses)
  1. CL, State College, PA

    Men are so stupid! Money and power netted him a 29 year old wife ... not his elderly body or mind. He speaks as a man in the throws of mid-life crisis! I wouldn't vote for someone so delusional.

    August 29, 2007 10:58 am at 10:58 am |
  2. Rob, San Diego CA

    He's 60 and she's 29???

    Can you say "daddy complex"? What do you suppose they have in common and talk about when they're alone? "Hey remember the day Elvis died? Oh no wait, I was 30 and you hadn't been born yet!!!"

    Sorry, I actually agree with Kucinich on some issues but this is just downright creepy – and certainly not something he should be bragging about to win him votes in the election...

    August 29, 2007 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
  3. Bea, Hoboken, NJ

    Take it from a woman, he wouldn't have gotten a second glance from his young wife if he had been some working stiff with a regular job. Come on, the guy seems nice enough but looks like one of Snow White's dwarfs!!

    August 29, 2007 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  4. J, Seattle, WA

    She's hot!

    August 29, 2007 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  5. Anonymous

    Wow, that James guy from Phoenix sure is jealous. I guess he can't get a 30 year old wife. Maybe he should go vegan.

    August 29, 2007 11:56 am at 11:56 am |
  6. NK

    I know what I really want is a president who's a health nut. Because what this country needs is more legislated nutrition. It was annoying when Bloomberg did it, and it would be even more annoying coming from a president. Maybe the fact that politicians don't want us to be allowed to think for ourselves is why so many of us can't.

    August 29, 2007 11:56 am at 11:56 am |
  7. Michael , Pittsburgh, Pa

    She's not so much a trophy wife because she is not a carbon-copied blonde one...she is a redhead with an accent. It seems more classier. Plus Kucinich is not super wealthy like Thompson...or tall.

    August 29, 2007 11:59 am at 11:59 am |
  8. Dave, Norfolk, Va

    She looks like she's hot for something, just not him.

    August 29, 2007 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  9. David, Gilbert Arizona

    It's creepy but it isn't anything new. CNN's very own Larry King is 26 years older than his wife. He's not quite 80 and she's not quite 50.

    Tony Randall married Heather Harlan. She was 50 years younger than he was. They have two children.

    It seems pretty creepy but who am I to say. Love may truly be blind. I will agree that the people who jumped all over Fred and his "trophy" wife are either hypocrites or more likely just jealous.

    August 29, 2007 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  10. Eric, Alpharetta, GA

    Good for Dennis! I'm envious.

    August 29, 2007 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  11. David, Salinas, CA

    While I’m not a supporter of Dennis Kucinich, I feel some obligation to correct a misconception evident in several comments here. Kucinich is not, and never has been a rich man.

    His father was a Croatian truck drive. Their family was so poor they had to live out of their car. After his tenure as mayor, Kucinich nearly lost his house in Cleveland when he fell behind on his mortgage payments. Kucinich reported an income of $38 on his 1982 income tax return.

    Mrs, Kucinich, the former Elizabeth Harper was a volunteer for the Red Cross in Tanzania and worked with Mother Teresa in India. She’s hardly a gold-digger.

    Is it too much to ask that posters do five minutes of online research before hurling slanderous insults?

    August 29, 2007 12:36 pm at 12:36 pm |
  12. framitz, RSM, CA

    This article gives me the impression that this is one sick puppy, better we see it now than make a big mistake that we will regret... Like the Bush mess....

    August 29, 2007 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  13. meghanfraley

    The first time I saw a link to an article on CNN political ticker entirely about Dennis! And it has to do with sex, and the age of his wife. If you want to understand why she married him, see him speak, he is wise, moving and inspirational. May I point out that Kucinich is far FAR away from being in the money bracket to have a trophy wife.

    (By the Way, On average Vegetarians live 10 years longer.)

    August 29, 2007 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  14. Skel, San Francisco, CA

    Oh Dennis, you naughty,naughty little elf!

    August 29, 2007 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  15. Rick, Chicago Illinois

    What's wrong with a guy (Dennis) marrying for the 3rd time (Elizabeth Harper) who happens to be roughly the same age as his daughter (Jackie).

    Isn't that what all men want and women find respectable?

    August 29, 2007 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  16. C, Sacramento, CA

    I must admit that Dennis's marital situation is irrelevant to his presidential aspirations. If he treats her right, loves her, and vice versa then carry on.

    But in my opinion, dare I say it, he just doesn't look "presidential" enough (just an observation). Simply drinking smoothies and being a vegetarian won't sway my decision either way. Take what you will from the photo.

    August 29, 2007 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  17. William, Sultan WA

    My conclusion is that Chris Matthews will live many lifetimes before gaining Dennis's or Elizibeth's wisdom.

    August 29, 2007 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  18. Mary, Mountain View, CA

    I don't think his wife is that attractive, just ok looking.

    August 29, 2007 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
  19. Jason, Encinitas, CA

    For all you saying that she married him "for the money", be aware that Mr. Kucinich is not rich - not by ANY stretch of the imagination.

    This is actually a good thing, since it indicates that he hasn't been lining his pockets with lobbyist money or skimming the lard off the pork barrels. Perhaps she married him because he is an intelligent, honest man in a profession where honesty is punished?

    You folks should read up on his ideas and his history before dismissing him. He is willing to enact more drastic changes than other candidates are, but you'll find that if you reason them out that his positions are sound and sensible. Ultimately you may find that he is one of the only.. maybe THE only.. truly candid, honest politicians in the field.

    August 29, 2007 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  20. wm fryer champaign il

    read up on her too........she's a hippy, not a money grabber.

    August 29, 2007 05:51 pm at 5:51 pm |
  21. RB, Massachusetts

    One thing is for certain – there's nothing wrong with his eyesight.

    August 29, 2007 06:25 pm at 6:25 pm |
  22. M, East Tennessee

    This article and the readers' comments reveal more about the ignorance of the voters than about the quality of the candidate.

    American politics and government have become no more than another "reality show." They appear to be using the same script writers, and have the same audience.

    August 30, 2007 09:00 am at 9:00 am |
  23. Tracy, Chicago, IL

    Umm, another Viagra candidate

    August 31, 2007 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  24. Byrne, Troy, NY

    Wow, I have been reading a lot of comments that wreak jealousy here! Get over it. So, he has a pretty wife. Can we concentrate on the real issues or are we falling prey to what the corporate media wants you to THINK re Kucinich? He a viable candidate that has the balls to stand up to this John Wayne president that we currently have. Can't you see that the media is purposely treating him like a joke WHY? because he is feared. He actually has something substantial to say. He rocks the boat! Name one thing Bush has said or proposed that is worth quoting? ABSOLUTELY NOTHING – except if he has butchered the English language in a speech, which is ALWAYS entertaining! Wake up – American needs a new direction and recycling the same old issues with the same old candidates will change this corrupt course. END THE WAR NOW!

    November 5, 2007 06:18 pm at 6:18 pm |
  25. Jimmy, LA

    The difference between Thompson and Kucinich is that Kucinich's trophy wife is actually good looking. This makes it all excusable.

    Thompson's is a trophy only relative to his own ugly old self. She is inexcusably tan for a woman traipsing through Iowa. She looks like a tart.

    December 17, 2007 04:06 am at 4:06 am |
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