Cynthia Ann McKinney (born March 17, 1955) is an American politician and activist who is an assistant professor at North South University, Bangladesh. As a member of the Democratic Party, she served six terms in the United States House of Representatives. She was the first black woman elected to represent Georgia in the House. She left the Democratic Party and ran in 2008 as the presidential candidate of the Green Party of the United States.
In the 1992 election, McKinney was elected in Georgia’s newly re-created 11th District, and was re-elected in 1994. When her district was redrawn and renumbered due to the Supreme Court of the United States ruling in Miller v. Johnson, McKinney was elected from the new 4th District in the 1996 election. She was re-elected twice more without substantive opposition. McKinney was defeated by Denise Majette in the 2002 Democratic primary. Her defeat was attributed to some Republican crossover voting in Georgia’s open primary election, which permits anyone from any party to vote in any party primary and “usually rewards moderate candidates and penalizes those outside the mainstream.”After her 2002 loss, McKinney traveled and gave speeches, and served as a commissioner in 9/11 Citizens Watch. On October 26, 2004, she was among 100 Americans and 40 family members of those who were killed on 9/11 who signed the 9/11 Truth Movement statement, calling for new investigations into unexplained aspects of the 9/11 events. McKinney was re-elected to the House in November 2004, following her successor’s run for Senate. In Congress, she advocated unsealing records pertaining to the FBI’s role in the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. and the murder of Tupac Shakur. She continued to criticize the Bush Administration over the 9/11 attacks. She supported anti-war legislation and introduced articles of impeachment against President Bush, Vice President Dick Cheney, and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.
She was defeated by Hank Johnson in the 2006 Democratic primary. In the March 29, 2006, Capitol Hill police incident, she struck a Capitol Hill Police officer for stopping her to ask for identification. She left the Democratic Party in September 2007. Members of the United States Green Party had attempted to recruit McKinney for their ticket in both 2000 and 2004. She eventually ran as the Green Party nominee in the 2008 presidential election receiving 0.12% of the votes cast.