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. faustian

    why do we need a candidate with libertarian leanings when we have RON PAUL???? because Nader's just a corporate and political shill, that's why. now that everyone is dropping out, it's time to show them that the establishment cannot co-opt the freedom movement and put in their own "anti-establishment"candidate. Dr. PAUL is the only opponent categorically opposed to the war. maybe that's why he's received more donations from our troops overseas than any other candidate. big brother, you have been called out!!!!!!!

    January 30, 2008 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  2. Vic

    Nader is a thorn in the Dems side. He must enjoy repugnicants in the WH. Why doesn't he just ride his bike and stay out of politics. He will NEVER WIN. Personally, I think he is a narcissist who just enjoys being a spoiler enjoying the attention gained by taking just enough votes from the Dems to ensure a repugnicant win. BTW, years ago I was an admirer of Naders when he was actually some good with his work ensuring safety standards, etc. BUT, that was before the 2000 election, along with a little help from the Supremes. When he cost VP Gore the WH and the country one of the most intellectually gifted, proven leaders this country could've EVER benefitted from (he and Bill)....he lost all respect I had ever had. And for all you rightwingers out there, ask yourself two questions.....are you better off now than you were before W, and would VP Gore have invaded a country who had NOTHING TO DO WITH 9/11? Would we be bordering on a depression when Clinton/Gore left us with a SURPLUS of more than $5 TRILLION.
    TO TOM MASTERS: W has made our country safer??????? Are u nuts? He's made us so much LESS safe and also the laughingstock of the rest of the world!!
    I guess you've not lost a family member in Bush's war....otherwise, you might just have a different feeling re: W. Do you have an empty chair at your home on holidays or had to visit the cemetery to feel near the one who used to occupy that chair? If not, then don't talk to anyone about how he's made this country safer please.

    January 30, 2008 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  3. dave

    oh no, say it ain't so ralph!

    January 30, 2008 05:23 pm at 5:23 pm |
  4. Henry

    Please with all due respect, you do not have a shot. Best you stay at home.

    January 30, 2008 05:23 pm at 5:23 pm |
  5. Tom

    Ralph.... if you want to do some good, go to Pakistan and register your own party and run there. In the meantime, stay out of US politics.

    January 30, 2008 05:24 pm at 5:24 pm |
  6. Noam

    "For many years, election campaigns here have been run by the public relations industry and each time it’s with increasing sophistication. Quite naturally, the industry uses the same technique to sell candidates that it uses to sell toothpaste or lifestyle drugs. The point is to undermine markets by projecting imagery to delude and suppressing information—and similarly, to undermine democracy by the same method."

    -Noam Chomsky

    January 30, 2008 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  7. FM

    This man is selling books at our expense! It cost us 8 years of Bush because he wanted to get some attention and sell books! What a jerk!

    January 30, 2008 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  8. Anthony

    I think that in the end, it will be revealed the Nader is a Republican. If not why would he ROUTINELY jump into the race at the last minute, take away votes from Democrats and help a Republican get elected? There is no way that he can win, he has to realize that. If not then he really does have some mental issues. He essentially helped to get the country into the mess that it's in. Anyone that would seriously consider voting for him has to be out of their minds!! For me it's Obama all the way, if even only for the CHANGE. I'm tired of hearing about what McCain and Hillary can do. They've been in DC forever and haven't changed a thing. If a Republican wins, we may as well get used to the fact that this war on terror is going to last forever! There WILL be a base in Iraq!! (How do you end HATE?! It CANNOT be done!) If Hillary wins, then we're going to end up withe Incredile Two-Headed President!!! For anyone that is supporting her, remember, a president is supposed to be decisive and have the ability to make decisions on their own. She is the only candidate who is letting her spouse speak for her. I understand consulting w/Bill and I even understand him answering a question or two about her campaign, stances on issues, etc. However I will never understand why he is being deployed to attack other candidates. She should be able to do that. Did I say that Ralph Nader sucks?! He's an idiot and he needs to go back to his case and stay there!!D

    January 30, 2008 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  9. Wilhemina

    Who let the DOG out?

    January 30, 2008 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  10. Matt

    GO AWAY RALPH! Are you too ego-centric to realize that by running you are aiding those with whom you disagree with so vehemently?

    January 30, 2008 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  11. Student

    If he were serious about being in the White House... He would have started a long time ago like everyone else. Why would he try to mess with the presidential race like this?!?!

    January 30, 2008 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  12. R. Featherly

    This fool and his ego are personally responsible for the the current administration and its tragic impact on this country and our position in the world. Someone should have the backbone to put Nader behind bars or on a distant island during every national election.

    January 30, 2008 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  13. Jack CA

    Nader get a life ,no one cares about your load of excrement except you. I would rather see Rush Limbaugh run for President! LOL

    January 30, 2008 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  14. Ardnuas

    Yes we can................. Obama/Edward 08............. Dream Ticket

    January 30, 2008 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  15. Al, Los Angeles, CA

    Head for the hills, 4 more years of Republicans!

    A rich republican will give him 10 million.

    Then he will mess us all up again.

    Canada is looking really nice these days.

    January 30, 2008 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  16. Y2W

    Give it up. No more Ralph VADER. Gore would have won for sure without folks wasting their vote on this guy. Thanks to VADER, look at the mess were in, thanks guy.


    January 30, 2008 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  17. Diana

    Please don't put us thru this again...stay home and darn socks or something productive.

    January 30, 2008 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  18. NS, New York

    He should have no problem raising the $10 million he needs- Republicans are probably already writing out checks.

    January 30, 2008 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  19. Charles L. Morse Sr.

    I plan to vote Constitutional party my self this time . I don't see anyone in either party running I trust , agree with on most issues. I face the fact finaly that a vote of no confidence in our system as it is being run to date by either party . Is not for the people , by the people or run by the constitution anymore . Time to protest at the polls . If we don't now nothing will change . The lesser of two evil's just doesn't work for me any more .

    January 30, 2008 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  20. Joe B

    Just like any citizen, he has the right to run.
    Let him run and put the electorate to the test.

    January 30, 2008 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  21. Waleed

    Ralph Nader didn't lose the election for Al Gore. Al, Tipper, and Joe Lieberman lost the election for Al Gore.

    If you add up any other candidates votes in Florida – Pat Buchanan (Reform), Harry Browne (Liberterian Party), Howard Phillips (Constitution Party) – separately, they could have swung for Gore too.

    January 30, 2008 05:29 pm at 5:29 pm |
  22. Betty-Jane Galloway

    Ralph Nader, I voted for you last time and would do so again. I absolutely don't trust any of the candidates so far to change anything. Our country is in such trouble and I don't think we need another political "machine" to run this country again. We need someone who will turn things around and I'd be willing to back you because I think you would search your heart to do the ethical and morally correct decisions.

    January 30, 2008 05:29 pm at 5:29 pm |
  23. randy

    Ha, yes lets bash the man that is responsible for saving lives every day due to his work for consumer rights and work place safety. God forbid a third party be in america, what would american do if they had to look at three people instead of two, that is what happens when world collide.. image the possiblity of having to think before you vote in an election, uncalled for, unamerican.
    Nadar if he runs has my vote.. obama had it but voting for the lesser of two evils is something that should not be what brings people to the polls. Obama can talk change, nadar lives it.
    Nadar '08

    p.s. Nadar isnt the cause of death in Iraq, blame the president and the elected officals that approved the war. Nadar didnt lose the election for gore, blame the millions of americans that voted for him, and the ones that continues to in '04. Wake up america.

    January 30, 2008 05:29 pm at 5:29 pm |
  24. Jeff Powers


    You must be a closet Republican. The only winner in your candidacy would be the the Republican nominee as you would almost certainly siphon off votes that would normally be cast for the Democratic nominee. Shade of 2000.

    January 30, 2008 05:29 pm at 5:29 pm |
  25. Len-CA

    You caused enough damage in 2000. Please follow the way of the Corvair and the dinosaur. Forget what your huge ego is telling you and stay out of this election.

    January 30, 2008 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
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