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. Sarah L, Fayetteville, AR

    It's funny, I joked with my husband that if the general election ended up being between Romney and Clinton, I would write in Nader's name. I guess I won't have to.

    January 30, 2008 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  2. Lucem ferre

    This is not about winning, it's about spoiling. If this great, and I mean that with all my heart, if this great man thinks he is not lying when he says he is not intending to spoil the Democratic candidtate, he's a fool. How in the world does he think he can get even close to the support Edwards (18-20%) consistantly got and if he can only produce Kucinich numbers (1-3%) then he has to know it is impossible for him to win and he is only making a statement, and that statement is one of spoiling the Democrats again.

    In other words, Nader would rather see a Rightwinged nut in the White House than a Democrat who disagrees on some of his issues. Your greatness, Mr. Nader is fading fast and I will lose all respect for you and what you've already done if you run.

    January 30, 2008 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  3. donna laffey

    Please spare us! Not again! Nader can't win and some folks would say he's indirectly responsible for the current mess Bush has imposed on the country.

    January 30, 2008 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  4. Jim

    Run, Ralph, run! McCAIN 2008!

    January 30, 2008 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  5. George Tiller

    Oh hell, not again!

    January 30, 2008 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  6. B from Miami, FL

    This guy's like a disease! Nadar – obviously, you haven't been living in our dimension! Please do us all a favor and get out!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    HILLARY '08!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    January 30, 2008 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  7. Joe B, Wichita Falls TX

    Go wax a Corvair! Stay out of the race you pompous nutcase!

    January 30, 2008 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  8. Case

    Wow, look at all of this Nader hate. American voters sure like choices don't they?

    January 30, 2008 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  9. Addam

    Seriously Nader, stay out. Yes your ideas are great, but are you going to win?


    If I thought Kucinich had a snowball's chance in hades, I would vote for him. But neither he nor you has any shot, at all. The only thing you will do is take idealistic voters away from the Democratic party and it could cost us the election... AGAIN!

    For all that is holy, please, I beg you, please stay out of the ****ing race!

    A vote for Nader is a vote for a Republican victory.

    January 30, 2008 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  10. molly


    January 30, 2008 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  11. ralphvoterN00N04&08?

    I LOVE IT! Thank God I'll hopefully have someone I can feel good sending a donation to and TO VOTE FOR. It was looking like I would have to sit the next election out.

    January 30, 2008 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  12. HGF

    What's worse? His self-absorbed arrogance or his boundless ego? Please, Ralph, stay home this time around and avoid becoming a vilified laughing stock yet again.

    January 30, 2008 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  13. Gabriel

    Excellent timing Ralph, lets hope the media actually ignore this idiot this time. He is not serious and only interested in his own agenda. He just an epihany I guess and he is going to save us all!!!!..... I don't think so.....Interesting to see who finances his run this time because it is a sure bet that there is financing in place and probably not his own.......(Some obscure organization that he has set up with Republican backing)

    Consumer Advocate......PLEASE!!!!

    January 30, 2008 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  14. Disbelieving

    Nader is a Republican shill pure and simple.

    And why is it people who support Bush are illiterate?

    Keep our country safe???? Get real.

    January 30, 2008 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  15. Emma

    Nader no!

    January 30, 2008 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  16. --Joe


    Too bad Obama isn't good enough to gain your endorsement. But then nobody ever will be... NOT EVEN YOURSELF! Oh, sure you like your stands on the issues, but could you be effective in actually moving the country in the right direction? No... because when you talk... people yawn and go to sleep.

    When Obama talks, people listen.. and that is what it is all about my friend.

    January 30, 2008 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  17. Anthony

    Nader needs to shut up and stay at home this time! I'm tired of his taking votes from legitimate candidates at the last minute. If he was going to get involved he should have done so a long time ago!! GO AWAY NADER!!!!

    January 30, 2008 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  18. mjr17

    Nader you have my vote if Obama wins the democratic nomination! Obama is as much a Washington insider as any other candidate in this race – especially now that he's buddied up with the Kennedys, etc. Bill said it right when he called his campaign a fairy tale.
    Nader 08!!!!!

    January 30, 2008 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  19. Bill

    Thanks to this idiot we have another one in the White House. How dare he even think about running. He's a loser and a spoiler!!! Give it up like Dennis did and sit quietly on the sidelines for once!

    January 30, 2008 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  20. Ken

    This will be the THIRD TIME you make a Democrat lose. Give it up already, no one is electing you.

    January 30, 2008 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  21. Mike

    I must say, I agree with his ideas of what the crucial issues are. However, the chance of the nation getting behind his agenda is nill. The American public is for too uninformed about the topics upon which his platform is based. He'll just end up being portrayed as a radical nut-job. The only sane vote for a reasonable shot at change is Obama. Nader is a pipe dream.

    January 30, 2008 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  22. Diana Emerick

    Will someone please, please commit this spoiler to a nursing home before we have another catastrophy a la Gore losing to the jerk-in-a-bubble, a travesty that has taken our country so far down the wrong road we may never get it back.

    January 30, 2008 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |

    Don't blame Nader, blame the people that actually vote for him!

    I am still baffled why people want to vote for Hillary?? Her stolen message of change from Obama is laughable. She is old time, status quo partisan politics! She is as much for change as a republican is pro-choice!

    To Edwards voters, send your support to the one who can turn this country around!
    – Obama 08!!

    January 30, 2008 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  24. Andrea

    Ralph Nader- The Republican Party's strongest ally.

    January 30, 2008 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  25. will


    January 30, 2008 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
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