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. Miles Anderson

    You guys are being a bit harsh I think...
    Of course, it is your right.

    It is also the right of any American born citizen that wants to run for President to do so under any party (it's not two party specific)...so I say hats off to Nader.

    A bit far fetched to say Narder caused any wars though. I think Bush and misinformation played just a small part.

    January 30, 2008 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  2. Timothy Ball

    Nader will grab plenty of votes if Hillary wins the primary. Also his intention is only to help the republicans. If he is serious in helping America, he should speak only against Republicans. That doesn't mean that democrats are the ideal people to run this nation. We as Americans have the choice to choose only lesser evil. So democrats are the lesser evil. Nader should think about how to save the country by not surrendering it republicans for another 4 more years.

    January 30, 2008 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  3. Dianna - Oklahoma

    Ralhp Nadar is either a very very well meaning miss guided ignorant man or a Republican operative. I am beginning to think it is choice B. I blame Nadar for Iraq. Had he never run Al Gore would have won. He would have gone into Afghanistan and stayed out of Iraq and we would not be in the fiscal situation we are in. GO AWAY NADAR NO ONE LIKES YOU.

    January 30, 2008 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  4. faboo

    Hmmm...how much money is the GOP going to dump into Nader's race this time?

    January 30, 2008 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  5. Laura Wilson

    What an ego! Ralph, why don't you put your energy towards something more realistic. You already proved your point in 2000.

    January 30, 2008 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  6. Brandon

    Hey, whats wrong with this guy!! Doesnt he know you can only run for President if you are a member of the two major parties. Idiot, somebody must have told hin that anybody can be President and he believed them. He actually thinks that this is a free country!!!!!!!!!!!! Doesnt he know that you have to be a seasoned politician to be President. Duh!!!! It says it right in the Constitution. You have to Know the Washington ways. I mean some people are so gulible.

    January 30, 2008 03:24 pm at 3:24 pm |
  7. Barney

    Nader....GO GET LOST
    You are an AH

    January 30, 2008 03:24 pm at 3:24 pm |
  8. Darth Vadik

    Nader is a great guy, and it wasn't him that gave Bush the white house, it was the SAME PEOPLE WHO ARE DEMOCRATS (AND LEANING DEMOCRATIC) THAT WILL NOT VOTE FOR HILLARY THIS TIME. When you find your perfect candidate, please let me know.




    January 30, 2008 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  9. Bill

    I say thank goodness that independents finally have a glimmer of hope for a candidate whom they can vote for with a good conscience. He's already got my vote.

    January 30, 2008 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  10. Again????

    you can't tell me this is really a " serious" bid? Notice when the democrats have a better chance at winning the white house he throws in his bid? it's nonesense. Nader is just another one of those that is far right. Stop Posing Nader!!!!! You are republican.

    January 30, 2008 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  11. Erin

    come on....get real. lets just accept that fact that nobody likes you. thank you.

    January 30, 2008 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  12. j haigh

    Right on, Ralph. We need more TRUE Americans to run for office. The current crop as you noted are seriously corrupted by corporations and lobbyists.

    January 30, 2008 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  13. MariAnne, Boston, MA

    Ralph – well, you WOULD be a spoiler; you don't have a snowball's chance in hell of winning. Please, it's time to get over yourself. As Jupiter Wilson, PhD, above, has eloquently stated – your time has gone.

    January 30, 2008 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  14. Arrthur Elmer

    Nader should grow up and get a job or retire from trying to prove he is a viable candidate for president.
    He is like a child wanting to do things he is incapable of doing but has not grown up to realize he does more harm than good.
    Either that or the candidates live off the campaign contributions for the time they are in the race for president.
    I would tell him to get a life.

    January 30, 2008 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  15. Melissa in CA

    Yes, Go away Nader!!

    You brought us Bush in 2000.

    I will never forgive you.

    January 30, 2008 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  16. Money

    Apparently thousands of lost lives, trillion of dollars of debt, a complete loss of American prestige abroad, and a shattered economy are not enough to fill the void in Ralph Nader's ego. No matter how ridiculous his candidacy is, a few bozos will vote for him – just look at last night's results. Mike Gravel got like 5,000 votes.

    Who the hell voted for Mike Gravel? The same idiots who would vote for Ralph Nader.

    January 30, 2008 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  17. JohnS

    Did you get what Ralph said?

    "Obama KNOWS A LOT (i.e., EXPERIENCE), but he is censoring himself".

    This is the gentle and non-diversive part of Obama that I like. Smart or Intelligent people are not out there tauting their experiences in other people's faces!!!!

    If Obama comes across as that "learned professor" I believe that people will start "calling names" (nerd or what have you). Way to go Ralph!!!

    January 30, 2008 03:27 pm at 3:27 pm |
  18. allen

    Please don't vote for this republican man! He is always brought in to run and take away votes from a legitimate democratic candidate. His idea and cause is noble, but he has donme this in the last two elections and he has done nothing to advance his cause. All he has done is take away votes from the democrats!
    Ralph get a life and realize that the 20,000 or so people that vote for you can go to someone that actually can make a difference!

    January 30, 2008 03:27 pm at 3:27 pm |
  19. Chris

    Give it up Nader...you're getting way too old for this, and you're not going to win, so don't waste your money.

    January 30, 2008 03:28 pm at 3:28 pm |
  20. Merritt Kolodny

    You clearly cost Gore the election and the result has been chaos and disillusionment. You must be very proud of yourself. Do you think the Republican will advance a green agenda? Merritt

    January 30, 2008 03:28 pm at 3:28 pm |
  21. Jeff

    Populism and other issues have already been raised by John Edwards and the other long shot candidates from both parties, they have all now dropped out. The race is becoming focused and the Democrats have a genuine shot at taking the White House back from the Republicans. The last thing this country needs is another proven spoiler in an election year. Mr. Nader while I admire your dedication and your desire to change how things work the party who is unwilling to do so is the one who benefits from your stealing votes from Dems. You cost Sen. Kerry enough votes in Ohio to put Bush back in the White House in '04 and you cost Al Gore enough votes in Florida to allow him into the White House in the first place and look at what that has done to this country and your causes, it has made them more difficult and has taken us backward in progress. Support a candidate, do not become one yourself and force another 8 years of corporate control from the Republican Party.

    January 30, 2008 03:28 pm at 3:28 pm |
  22. olivia

    Let him be Obama's running mate – they have an equal amount of hubris.

    January 30, 2008 03:28 pm at 3:28 pm |
  23. sadie

    Yes, let's let Nader split the vote...AGAIN!!!! He is to blame for GWB sitting in the White House for the past 8 years!!! Let's do it again....destroy the United States completely by splitting the vote......when will we ever learn? No wonder the rest of the World thinks we are complete idiots.What person/country is paying Nader to do this? Is it his personal objective to destroy this country? Or is it the money?

    January 30, 2008 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  24. Mark

    Please don`t do it Ralph!!!!!!!!!!

    January 30, 2008 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  25. Norman

    All I can say is. NOT AGAIN.

    Norman (Maryland)

    January 30, 2008 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
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