By Gabrielle Russon
Published: Wednesday, January 2, 2013 at 8:56 p.m.
SARASOTA - Run a 10K and lose 10 pounds are among Cindy Sheehan's New Year resolutions.
The rest are a bit more complicated, like end all wars and bring the U.S. troops home, free all political prisoners, and end offshore oil drilling.
Sheehan, 55, emerged as a leading figure in the anti-war movement when her son was killed in Iraq. She starts 2013 in Sarasota, where she will speak at two events this week as she tries to re-energize her cause at the start of the new year.
“I'm going to just keep doing what I do,” Sheehan said Wednesday during an interview on Siesta Key. “I can't stop until I'm dead or the wars end.”
In her speech Saturday at a World Peace Day event, Sheehan said she will push for more anti-war protests and encourage the Occupy political movement to head to Washington, D.C., to speak out against military spending.
“Let's push the Pentagon off the fiscal cliff,” she says.
Sheehan, who writes books and a political blog, is a grandmother of four from Vacaville, Calif. Her stand against war has not changed over the years, though her audience has significantly changed since Barack Obama became president.
Much of the public outcry directed against former President George. W. Bush by MoveOn.org and others subsided once a Democrat was elected, Sheehan said.
Sheehan became a vocal critic of the war and traveled across the country to speak at rallies after her son Casey, a specialist in the U.S. Army, was killed in 2004 while serving in Iraq.
The crowds of thousands at protests has now dwindled to dozens, even though the country is still at war.
“The Democrats are as much a part of the war machine as the Republicans,” said Sheehan. “We can't let Democrats get off the hook because they're Democrats.”
Sheehan is mulling a run for California governor as either an independent or in the Peace and Freedom party in 2014.
“I'm trying to get my ducks in a row” for the race, she said.
A gubernatorial bid would not be her first foray into politics.
She previously ran as comedian Roseanne Barr's vice president on the Peace and Freedom ticket, coming in sixth place in the U.S. presidential election in November.
She also was unsuccessful at stealing Nancy Pelosi's congressional seat in 2008.