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. Louise

    GO NADER! I was an Edwards supporter and not too thrilled about having to decide between Clinton or Obama. I have serious concerns about these two.
    Clinton is the Washington establishment and part of the problem. Obama's record shows that he has been too cozy with the corporate elite. For those who echo Obama's word "change". I have heard Obama's speeches. They are empty rhetoric about uniting democrates and republicans. The republicans will back him as long as he does the bidding of the corporate interests in washington.

    January 30, 2008 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  2. Pete

    For the love of Mike, go away Nader. If you had run up to now as an Independent, participated in debates, and decided to run as a 3rd candidate, fine. Instead, you stick your nose in at the last minute, hoping to stir things up, and ultimately confusing some voters.

    You are no longer the good guy – the consumer advocate. You're an egotistical man looking for headlines. You are partly responsible for one of the worst blunders in the history of the US, helping George Bush win the presidency. Your schtick is tired and old, just like you.

    Go away. Forever.

    January 30, 2008 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  3. Gary

    Oh, good God, haven't we suffered enough the last 8 years because of this egomaniac??

    January 30, 2008 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  4. David

    oh, god, just what we need.

    January 30, 2008 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  5. Barry

    Stay home Ralph. For God's sake, please stay home.

    January 30, 2008 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  6. Josa, Iowa

    Don't run, you idiot!

    January 30, 2008 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  7. sean S

    Nader... go away. You are the grump skulking in the corner at a party grimacing over the banal conversation. You are the person who starts disliking a band you listen to... because they get popular. You are a unrealistic, idealist wet rag. Go stage your revolution somewhere your needed... like Venezuela. Please, just go away.

    January 30, 2008 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  8. david pearson

    Ralph Nader = Bush Presidency= War= Blood on his hands.

    January 30, 2008 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  9. ellen neri

    fix your typo...waste-fruad military.

    January 30, 2008 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  10. Russ in NJ

    Why is everyone so negative on Nader? No he won't win, but it's his right to run if he wants to. If you think Gore lost the election because Nader was running, think again. Gore lost the election because Gore's platform didn't resonate with enough people. He had to win over about 100 more people to win the presidency. Many of you may only believe in front runner politics, but I vote my opinion. My candidates have never won the presidency because I refuse to settle for one of the two-party candidates. When the rest of the country wakes up and votes it's conscious perhaps we'll have more than two potential candidates every 4 years.
    Don't blame Nader, blame yourselves.

    January 30, 2008 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  11. Bukky

    Lisa, Des Moines IA January 30, 2008 2:44 pm ET

    Great…someone to vote for if Hillary receives the nomination. For a sec, I thought I might have to vote republican.

    Seriously Lady... you sound like the kind of person that voted for Bush.... TWICE

    January 30, 2008 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  12. Friendly

    Here comes Nader again – the secret weapon of the republican machine. Sure, they need his help again – now to make John MacCain the next president. Will it work this time around?! – we'll see... In 2004 I thought that majority of people who voted for Bush or Nader in 2000 would be smart enough not to vote for Bush again – I was wrong...

    January 30, 2008 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  13. Frank

    No. Please step farther away from a white house bid.

    January 30, 2008 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  14. Rob Howe

    Mr. Nader says, "[I]n terms of voters who are at least interested in having major areas of injustice, depravations, and solutions discussed in a presidential campaign, they might be interested in my exploratory effort."





    I appreciate where you are coming from and wish we could have someone like you in the White House, perhaps. But, we have to be practical within the current system unless we want a revolution which might be necessary if things keep going the way they are.

    If we can at least get an intelligent Democrat in the White House, things will be MUCH BETTER.






    STAY OUT!!!!!!

    January 30, 2008 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  15. NickNas

    OK so HOW PITIFUL are you Panicked Hillary supporter HUH??? I see you have no shame like your Queen of Poor Taste. This story is about NADER and you all turn this like ANY other article into an ANTI- OBAMA Party.

    Grow up.. your Fears are showing.

    January 30, 2008 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  16. Darren

    If Nader has enough money to run for election every year then he should do the nation a favor and just right a check to the government to help with the economy instead of "getting serious" only to quit 3 weeks later.

    January 30, 2008 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  17. Nicholas

    waste-fraud is spelled wrong

    January 30, 2008 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  18. Kevin, Kentucky

    Dear Ralph,

    Please stop winning presidential elections for Republicans.

    Thank You.

    January 30, 2008 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  19. goldeneye

    Darth "Nader" is at it again....go to another galaxy far, far away......!!!!!

    January 30, 2008 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  20. charles from NY

    Nader elected Bush in year 2000. Nader is the single individual, just next to Bush and Chney, who is responsible for the screwed condition of our country. If this idiot was not existent, Bush will never have moved into Whitehouse, and our country would be much much better off.

    I just hope this jerk disappear from my country. Nader, fall into some quicksand and disappear from this earth.

    January 30, 2008 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  21. AJ

    Oh God, not again. Either this guy is a lunatic or in bed with the Republicans.

    January 30, 2008 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  22. Allen

    Crawl back in your hole Ralph.

    January 30, 2008 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  23. Andy Hamm

    Ralph, you can't get in fast enough.

    January 30, 2008 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  24. Matt Crawford - Columbus, Ohio

    Nando, Florida wrote:

    he would just take votes from Hillary Obama voters are educated !!!

    We don't get hoodwinked!!!!!!!!!

    I am almost without words over this statement. At the surface level, it's funny because Nando's "educated" ability to write grammatically correct is strangely absent. At a more macro level, it's funny because there is a complete lack of respect for Democracy in the statement.

    Any and all Americans have the fundamental right to run for president. If you are concerned that Nader may take votes away from your candidate, then your candidate wasn't the best fit for that voter. Nader gives a voice to individuals who have lost their ability to speak via John Edwards and Dennis Kucinich.

    And while I won't personally vote for Nader, let's not lose sight on our fundamental American rights.

    Matt Crawford, PhD

    January 30, 2008 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  25. JD WIlliams

    Any impact Mr. Nader would have on the race would certainly benefit the Republicans' bid for the White House; Ralph do us all a favor, stay out of the race. You've run in the past to bring about awareness of causes you believe should be at the forefront of American politics. The end result of your lofty idealistic campaign has resulted in the election of the party which is least concerned with the issues that construct your platform. I'm sure the Republicans would love you to run again, but, take it from a moderate Dem, we want nothing to do with you.

    January 30, 2008 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
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