January 30th, 2008
06:28 PM ET
15 years ago

Nader takes steps towards another White House bid

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.l.cnn.net/cnn/2008/images/01/30/art.nader.gi.jpg caption=" Nader is taking steps toward another White House bid."]
WASHINGTON (CNN) - Ralph Nader, the longtime consumer advocate who was blamed by many Democrats for Al Gore’s loss in the 2000 presidential election, launched an exploratory committee Wednesday for another White House bid, and told CNN he is likely to get in the race if he can put the resources in place.

"John Edwards, the banner of Democratic Party populism, is dropping out, and Dennis Kucinich dropped out earlier, so in terms of voters who are at least interested in having major areas of injustice, deprivations, and solutions discussed in a presidential campaign, they might be interested in my exploratory effort," Nader said.

Nader has launched an official exploratory committee Web site, and said he will formally make a decision in about a month. He said he is certain to get in the race if he can demonstrate the ability to raise $10 million and recruit enough lawyers to deal with ballot access issues. He has yet to formally file paperwork with the Federal Elections Commission, though he does not need to until he officially becomes a candidate, according to the FEC.

Nader said he finds Democrats Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama both unacceptable candidates, and he said whichever wins the party's presidential nomination will not have an impact on his decision to run.

"They are both enthralled to the corporate powers," Nader said of the two leading Democrats. "They've completely ignored the presidential pattern of illegality and accountability, they've ignored the out of control waste-fruad military expenditures, they hardly ever mention the diversion of hundreds of billions of dollars to corporate subsidies, handouts, and giveaways, and they don't talk about a living wage."

He expressed particular disappointment with Obama, whose senate record he called "mediocre, and quite cautious."

"It's not that he doesn't know what the score is, of course he does - look at his background, he knows plenty," Nader said. "But he's censoring himself."

Nader attracted close to 100,000 votes in Florida in 2000 - a state Al Gore ultimately lost to George Bush by approximately 500 votes. He brushes aside suggestions his candidacy this year may ultimately spoil the election for the Democratic Party.

"Political bigotry will be the label on anybody who uses the word 'spoiler,' he said. "Because ‘spoiler’ means minor candidates are second class citizens. Either we have an equal right to run for election, or we are spoilers for each other trying to get each other's votes.”

- CNN Producer Alexander Mooney

Filed under: Ralph Nader
soundoff (1,186 Responses)
  1. Wayne, Greenville TX

    Ralph –

    Do yourself and everyone else a favor – stay out of the race this time.

    Thank you.

    January 30, 2008 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  2. Rob, Minneapolis, MN

    Time for the idealism versus pragmatism debate.

    This could get ugly.

    January 30, 2008 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  3. Texan

    I hope he does not run- but I do agree with what he thinks of Obama. I cannot believe CNN did not edit and cut that part.

    January 30, 2008 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  4. Patriot

    Because of the arrogant attitude of the Clintons and their supporters, people might end up voting for Nader in the fall if she somehow wins the nomination.

    January 30, 2008 02:22 pm at 2:22 pm |
  5. Marilyn

    Nader, go away!

    January 30, 2008 02:22 pm at 2:22 pm |
  6. Dave

    way to go ralph. it is your right to run if you desire. great points on these corporate-puppet candidates we have. but why does the majority back them? get a clue.

    January 30, 2008 02:22 pm at 2:22 pm |
  7. Dan, NJ

    If its Clinton v. Romney, I will take a look at Nader. If Obama, Bllomberg, or McCain (in that order) are in the race, they will draw my support.

    January 30, 2008 02:22 pm at 2:22 pm |
  8. Greta

    boo hoo. He is not running for President, but running to sink the Democrats. It wont work this time. Totally different dynamics! Why can't he just retire rather than seek so much attention like this!

    January 30, 2008 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  9. STEVE


    January 30, 2008 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  10. Frank

    Please, someone explain "Politics" in a practical way to this guy so that he really understands what "spoiler" means in the real world!!! Where is this guy from, Mars or some other galaxy????

    January 30, 2008 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |

    Ralph Nader should get a life!

    January 30, 2008 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  12. AJ, IL

    One word for Nader....LOSER!

    January 30, 2008 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  13. Wayne, Wentzville MO

    Uuuh-ooooh! Look out! Here we go again. Hey Ralph, please forget about it. It'll never work The party for you is over. It just won't work my friend. Please don't steal delegates and votes from the other candidates. Please stay retired sir. Thank you!

    January 30, 2008 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  14. bridgett, lansing

    Someone please stop this man. He is going to make this a total mess. This time I don't think alot of people will vote for him.

    January 30, 2008 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  15. ATexanForAUnitedAmerica

    God help us all. And here I thought it was just Lou Dobbs coveting an independent bid if Hillary gets the democratic nomination.

    January 30, 2008 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  16. molly

    the clintons are liars
    the world knows this
    it really suprises me (makes me sick) that we have let another one get this far
    don't go crying when she lies too

    January 30, 2008 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  17. pablo

    I love you nader, but stay out for the love of god!!!!!!!!!!!

    January 30, 2008 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  18. Ron

    It seems as if Nader is feeding his ego again. He's not been noticed recently so he talks again about running for president. If he was really concerned about this country and the issues, he would take the same high path path as Al Gore has. Why doesn't he find someone who he can support and urge them to run as a third party candidate. To me, Nader has no credibility left and I hope that the public repudiates him.

    January 30, 2008 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  19. matt

    Please don't. Please, God, just say no. Please. Please. Please.

    January 30, 2008 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  20. joe

    PLEASE NO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


    Nader is almost worse than Obama.

    January 30, 2008 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  21. annageorge

    I wonder what RALPH NADER actually stands for. We have democratic candidates who actually have a good shot at winning and who has almost the same ideas as him but he will prevent them from winning just as he did when Al Gore ran and so we have to deal with mess this country is in now again.

    January 30, 2008 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  22. John

    please leave nader...you haev don enough bad things already.... give your EGO a rest

    January 30, 2008 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  23. BM

    Nader is joking, he's really a Republican...:)

    January 30, 2008 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  24. annageorge

    please dont let him run again.

    January 30, 2008 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  25. Roy Swonger, Merrimack, NH

    Nader long ago made the transition from Crusading Consumer Advocate to Self-Promoting, Self-Obsessed Clown. Remember, this is the guy who claimed there was no difference between the two parties in 2000. He's long past relevant, but probably has a book to sell or something.

    January 30, 2008 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
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