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. z,new york, ny

    just go away, but then again, if Clinton wins, then stay in... and it'll serve us right for falling for her dirty, ingenuous tricks.

    January 30, 2008 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  2. Rosalind

    I think that the Republicans are secretly paying Nader to pull votes away from the Dems. Ralph, if you are reading this, you don't need the money.

    January 30, 2008 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  3. Kim in Pa

    Nando- the problem isn't the primaries, it is the general election. He will take votes away from WHOMEVER the Dem nominee is.....

    That said, Ralph needs to sit this one out. He already gave us Bush.

    Obama '08!

    January 30, 2008 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  4. kyle

    We already have Mike Gravel!

    January 30, 2008 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  5. jyfranca

    It is your constitutional right to run for presidency,I support your decision to run.you are honarable man and we love you i hope its end of Democrats

    January 30, 2008 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  6. Bukky

    He's running KNOWING he can't win? I respect Edward fro dropping out because he new he could not win and his candidacy would be a distractor not an addition.

    And how can he say he take more issue with Obama when Hillary has literally sold her self to Big Corp for the sake of campaign donation.. she slap logos on herself as if she was in Nascar.

    Nader running would be the most self centered "hey look at me" campaign ever

    Edwards dropped because no one was paying attention to him fighting fot the "lil guy" what make you thing you will get more attention doing the same.

    January 30, 2008 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  7. Psych

    Ralph would be more effective if he were more consistent in his gift of gab. Others with much more public support and resources realized the reality of politics. If Ralph wants to bring about change he should do so in a successful way not simply spoiling the process for moderate change! Sabotoge got us Bush and we lost America.

    January 30, 2008 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  8. Brian Kelly, Glendale, CA

    Anybody who votes for Nader, after he caused the Bush disaster, is a monumental idiot.

    January 30, 2008 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  9. namata


    January 30, 2008 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  10. Justin


    You've done of enough damage. You've help to get Bush in and he screwing America left and right. You need to sit this one out.

    January 30, 2008 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  11. Dan

    He was a spoiler. If he can't see that then he is not bright enough to be president. I think, however, he knows it. So what is his motive? Perhaps ego that transcends what is good for this country.

    January 30, 2008 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  12. harold

    Not again... Why dosen't this guy get married...???? Then he could get off the screw up he is on the prez stuff...What a creep!! What experience does he claim to have to be prez? ....Or married??

    January 30, 2008 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  13. Tonizee

    NOOOOOOO!!!!! Oh, the humanity!

    January 30, 2008 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  14. Mike

    The blood of every US soldier who has died in Iraq is on this man's hands just as sure as it is on the Bush Administration's.

    January 30, 2008 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  15. Canadian

    Jupiter Wilson: Please do not spring Obama on us (the rest of the World). Bush has done enough damage. Should Obama become president, please let him apply his hope and changes to the US first and let us (the rest of the World) decide if we need his help.

    January 30, 2008 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  16. Karen, Florida

    Ralph Nader is funded by the Republicans to run when they know they will have trouble winning the election. Watch, if Hillary gets the nomination, Nader will run, cause the republicans know they can't throw anything else at her that hasn't already been thrown, and she's still standing and she still has a large number of voters behind her. If Obama (God Help Us) gets the nomination, Nader will not run, because the Republicans will feel they have the election all sewn up. It's easier to knock someone down who hasn't yet felt what it's like to have the Republicans come at you with both barrels, than to try and knock down someone who keeps getting up fighting.

    January 30, 2008 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  17. Hope

    Oh please Nadar give the money to charity. Save us from this crap again. No one wants you.

    January 30, 2008 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  18. Conan

    To all ignorant people who claim that Bush stole the election in 2000, please print out the sentence below and read it over and over again.

    "Nader attracted close to 100,000 votes in Florida in 2000 — a state Al Gore ultimately lost to George Bush by approximately 100 votes. "

    January 30, 2008 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  19. NickNas

    This man is am MENACE!! You NEVER hear ANYTHING he has to offer the country EVER until it is time for an election and he just runs to have something to do. He has no chance he knows it and I personally hold him resposible for the last 7 years that has ruined this country. I wonder if it is some Republican Backed group that is funding this nutcase.

    January 30, 2008 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  20. art

    I heard bozo the clown is forming an exploratory commission too!

    January 30, 2008 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  21. JC

    What, no mention of McCain?

    January 30, 2008 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  22. brian kiley

    Ralph Never Gets It Nader needs to shut up and retire.

    January 30, 2008 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  23. Frank, San Diego

    I hope that after seven years of George Bush, nobody will fall for Nader again. Go back and look at the exit polls in Florida from 2000. Eighty percent of Nader voters said that they would have voted for Gore if Nader had not been on the ballot. That would have put Gore far enough in front that not even the Republican Supreme Court would have had the nerve to install Bush.

    Thanks, Ralph, but no thanks!

    January 30, 2008 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  24. Harold

    Oh, please do run, you pointless toad. That will help the GOP in a big way at a time when voters are more interested in making history than a candidate's qualifications.

    January 30, 2008 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  25. Brett

    Go Ralph!!! We need a candidate who is serious about change in this race.

    All you so-called liberals who are happy with whatever factory-formed candidates the Democrats are putting up to unseat the GOP are just going to get more of the same...

    Bush's greatest damage to this country wasn't his time in office – its how drastically he has lowered our standards of what to expect and demand from our leaders.

    The Democratic front-runners will not accomplish real change. The Democratic Congress has done very little since they have taken power. Why? Are they scared? No, outside of hot button issues, they really don't want anything to change. Their bread is buttered by the same hands as the GOP.

    It is evident from the simple-minded backlash in these comments (i.e. "LOSER!") that Ralph Nader nay-sayers do not pay close attention to their candidates. Educate yourselves, listen to what Nader has to say and realize that the only way to change our corrupt system of government is to think outside the box and support a candidate outside of the party system.

    If we make the same effort to support him as we do the Clintons and Obamas, he CAN win.


    January 30, 2008 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
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