Nader announces new bid for White House

by on February 24, 2008 · 5 comments

in Election, Media

By HOPE YEN, Associated Press

Ralph Nader said Sunday he will run for president as a third-party candidate, criticizing the top White House contenders as too close to big business and pledging to repeat a bid that will “shift the power from the few to the many.” Nader, 73, said most people are disenchanted with the Democratic and Republican parties due to a prolonged Iraq war and a shaky economy.

The consumer advocate also blamed tax and other corporate-friendly policies under the Bush administration that he said have left many lower- and middle-class people in debt. “You take that framework of people feeling locked out, shut out, marginalized and disrespected,” he said. “You go from Iraq, to Palestine to Israel, from Enron to Wall Street, from Katrina to the bumbling of the Bush administration, to the complicity of the Democrats in not stopping him on the war, stopping him on the tax cuts.” “In that context, I have decided to run for president,” Nader told NBC’s “Meet the Press.”

Nader also criticized Republican candidate John McCain and Democrats Barack Obama and Hillary Rodham Clinton for failing to support full Medicare for all or cracking down on Pentagon waste and a “bloated military budget.” He blamed that on corporate lobbyists and special interests, which he said dominate Washington, D.C., and pledged in his third-party campaign to accept donations only from individuals.

“The issue is do they have the moral courage, do they have the fortitude to stand up to corporate powers and get things done for the American people,” Nader said. “We have to shift the power from the few to the many.” Nader also ran as a third-party candidate in 2000 and 2004, and many Democrats still accuse him of costing Al Gore the 2000 election.

Obama, responding Saturday to Nader’s earlier criticisms that he lacked “substance,” praised Nader as a “heroic figure.” “In many ways he is a heroic figure and I don’t mean to diminish him. But I do think there is a sense now that if somebody is not hewing to the Ralph Nader agenda, then you must be lacking in some way,” Obama said.

Clinton called Nader’s announcement a “passing fancy” and said she hoped his candidacy wouldn’t hurt the Democratic nominee. “Obviously, it’s not helpful to whomever our Democratic nominee is. But it’s a free country,” she told reporters as she flew to Rhode Island
for campaign events.

Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee, speaking shortly before Nader’s announcement, said Nader’s past runs have shown that he usually pulls votes from the Democrat. “So naturally, Republicans would welcome his entry into the race,” the former Arkansas governor said on CNN. Nader vociferously disputes the spoiler claim, saying only Democrats are to blame for losing the race to George W. Bush. He said Sunday there could be no chance of him tipping the election to Republicans because the electorate will not vote for a “pro-war John McCain.”

“If the Democrats can’t landslide the Republicans this year, they ought to just wrap up, close down, emerge in a different form,” Nader said.


Associated Press writer Beth Fouhy in Providence, R.I., contributed to this report.

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Mike Harmon February 24, 2008 at 7:14 pm

I found your site on technorati and read a few of your other posts. Keep up the good work. I just added your RSS feed to my Google News Reader. Looking forward to reading more from you.

Mike Harmon


Dave Sparling February 25, 2008 at 9:19 am

This smells a lot like 2000. Now we again combine Ralph with Diebold and throw in Uncle Clarence and the Supremes and even if most of Americans vote for a democrat, McCain will be appointed just like “w” the crusader was.


Frank Gormlie February 25, 2008 at 10:27 am

Dave – you and I and everyone must ensure that this is not a repeat of 2000, where we sat on our collective asses, and watched TV.


Jon Quate February 25, 2008 at 7:01 pm

If Nader had spent the last 6,or 7 years building a viable third party instead of doing nothing in the way of organizing it might be interesting, but just to run without any organization is nothing but ego. While he did do great things, his time has passed. The corporations have control, and Republican donors will contribute more this time than last. He can yell all he wants about his right to run, but only an fool would actually vote for him now.


Richard Nadeau February 25, 2008 at 9:26 pm

A partisan U.S. Supreme Court’s 5-4 majority decision in Bush v. Gore, ended the Florida election recount.

Nader had nothing to do with that or with the fact that thousands of black votes were not counted in a State were Republicans controlled the voting process. A lot of retired CIA down there too, with lots of experience in rigging elections. Who really knows since we’ll never see a proper investigation of what actually happened anymore than we will see a proper investigation of 9/11. Too many anomolies and dangerous questions.

Also, Gore would still have won the Presdiency had he been able to carry his own State of Tennessy. Nevertheless, in spite of all the questions, it was the Democratic party, with all of its resources and institutional power, that went along with the rigged election and consequently bears the greatest repsonsibilit for the silence, not Nader.

He’s the convenient “scapegoat “who has been used to absolve the Democrats and their supporters of responsibility. This, by the way, does not mean I will vote for him now. I agree with Quate’s criticism about his lack of organization, although I disagree with the facetious claim and simplistic pop psychology that its “all ego.”

Nader made legitimate and rationale claims Sunday in his interview with Tom Russert on MEET THE PRESS, claims that all genuine progressives who care about America should support. He wants to widen the debate and discuss the corporate system, the war, the environment. He’ll be shut down fast like Kucinich was with a chorus of support from the so called “left” that has forever been left out.


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