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. American Patriot


    January 30, 2008 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  2. bruce wilson

    Nader rhymes with Vader. The Darkside approches. Ralph Nader is the antichrist!

    January 30, 2008 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  3. Ito, Yokosuka Japan

    Oh...for goodness sakes...let Nader run. At least we know he cares about the country.

    January 30, 2008 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  4. RO

    GO NADER! Glad to know someone will be on the ballot that is worth my vote, now. When Kucinich stepped away, I was disappointed to think we'd have to choose whether Hillary or Barack was the "most progressive" .... I'd much rather choose someone who was truly progressive.

    Dennis was willing to take us out of NAFTA and the WTO, and was willing to do what was necessary to make this country accountable to its people ... hopefully Nader will bring that same voice to the election.

    January 30, 2008 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  5. Intellectuals

    Not this time Ralph.

    Get checked for dementia

    Intellectuals for Obama

    January 30, 2008 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  6. not again!

    Ralph, get over yourself and your ego trip.

    Do you really want to hand the white house to the republicans AGAIN?

    Yes, both parties have their faults, but there are real differences.

    If you hadn't caused Gore to lose, we wouldn't be in IRAQ!!!!
    That is a HUGE difference.

    The supreme court would not be as conservative as it now is.
    That is a HUGE difference.

    If Gore had been president for the last 4 or 8 years, imagine what might have done about global warming.
    That is a HUGE difference.

    I vote Green locally, but it has to built up from local levels, then state and then finally national. It just isn't feasible right now and all you'll do is steal progressive votes.

    Give it a rest... please!

    January 30, 2008 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  7. Bob

    Ralph: It's time to endorse Gravel. He has all your idealistic principles. His support doubled from Iowa to Florida and he is going to get even more votes in California. He can pull it off. Ride the wave Ralph!!!!

    January 30, 2008 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  8. wordslinger, chicago

    That a boy, Ralph, keep staring lovingly in that mirror. Because there are no issues or causes more important than your self-love. Like you said, there was no difference between Bush and Gore, anyway.

    January 30, 2008 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  9. P-funk

    sounds like someone is jealous!

    January 30, 2008 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  10. WH-KC/AZ


    Get a life! Can I help you spend your time and money?. Go to China and figure out how to save us all from lead poisioning. That would be a great service to the country. You have spoiled enough elections.

    January 30, 2008 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  11. Rick

    How can anyone suggest that Nader caused the 'dems' to lose and that the Bush era is his fault?
    He didn't 'steal' votes. Why isn't Kerry or Gore to blame for not capturing those votes that went to Nader?
    Even if he won't win he should run. We need real choice and real representation of the People when we go to the polls.
    Sort of the ideal the country was founded on, isn't it?

    January 30, 2008 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  12. Bill Rathbun

    Forget about it Ralph! Because of you the world has suffered through the terrible Bush years. If you get into the race this year we'll know you are a Republican plant!

    January 30, 2008 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  13. Susan, MI

    Does anyone else hear circus music?

    January 30, 2008 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  14. Lester

    Even if Mr. Nader decides to run, it will eventually boil down to this: Who can we trust? Although I think Hillary is a great leader and should be praised for being the first true female presidential contender, I am frankly worried that her mobster-like approach to dealing with people is not the face America wants on our highest office.

    I would however relish the idea, if Hillary were elected, of reading the daily tabloids of Bill's casanova exploits amongst the White House secretarial pool. Good Lord ladies, run for your lifes!!! A taser or pepper spray would be the standard issue protection necessary for all females within a block radius of the oval office.

    Vote Hillary, keep our tabloids alive!

    January 30, 2008 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  15. Karen

    Joe, Ralph Nader did not cause George Bush. He never had a relationship with Barbara. George H. caused George W. by forgetting to use that all important condom.

    Go Ralph! Keep them honest!

    January 30, 2008 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  16. Audrey

    Oh please. You've got to be kidding me. I can't believe anyone would actually vote for this guy after he cost the country a president with a brain.

    January 30, 2008 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  17. Stay Out

    STAY OUT NADAR...You will lose again and will only help the Republicans. Face it, you might not like either party, but Democrats are closer in your views than Republicans....Stay Out!!

    January 30, 2008 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  18. Syl

    Where was he during this whole time? If I didn't know better, I'd think the guy is being paid by Republicans to ruin Democrats' chances to be elected.

    January 30, 2008 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  19. Porter

    If Obama and Clinton aren't socialist enough for you, it might be time to consider moving to North Korea.

    January 30, 2008 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  20. Roger from MA

    I'll vote for Mr. Nader because I refuse to vote for any candidate who supports NAFTA and globalization. Present me with two major candidates who support NAFTA and globalization again, and I'll present Ralph with my vote for President of the United States.

    January 30, 2008 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  21. charlotte

    Nader has no chance to win the presidency, his plan is to throw a monkey-wrench into the mix, so the GOP will win again? If you love this country stay out of this.

    January 30, 2008 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  22. Dave

    I agree with Ralph Nader that every candidate has the right to run for President and that there should be more than two candidates in the race but there really needs to be someone new. He has run twice and didn't make a dent. I think he needs to find someone new. I also agree that calling him a spoiler is not a fair statement but it is true that the last eight years (and a horrible eight years it has been) would not have happened like they have if he had not run. So maybe he could just sit this one out and let the Democrats "spoil" this election for themselves if it is going to happen. Just a thought 🙂

    January 30, 2008 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  23. Tony G

    I think Nader getting into the race would force Bloomberg to join as an Independent as well. It very well may cause Gore to join the race although he'd be pretty late in the race.

    January 30, 2008 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  24. Rose

    Heads up people. Ralph is a Republican in sheep's clothing.

    January 30, 2008 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  25. Daryl, Des Moines Iowa

    To all of those who call Nader, and other third party presidential candidates spoilers, ask yourself this question

    "Who owns your vote?"

    If you are a liberal, is it the democrats who sell out your liberal ideals at the drop of a hat?

    If you are a conservative, is it the republicans who sell our your conservative ideals at the drop of a hat?

    Your vote is your own, no one can "steal" it, and no one has a "right" to it. Candidates have to earn your vote.

    January 30, 2008 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
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