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. Anonymous

    Stay ot PLEASE. We don't need another Republican

    January 30, 2008 06:23 pm at 6:23 pm |
  2. Anonymous

    Keep Out Ralph

    January 30, 2008 06:23 pm at 6:23 pm |
  3. Anonymous

    Stick to what you know

    January 30, 2008 06:24 pm at 6:24 pm |
  4. Julia Byrd, Hayden, Idaho

    Why would anyone vote for such an arrogant self-center nut-case. We already have one in the white house. Ralph you're a little late, Georgie beat you to it.

    January 30, 2008 06:25 pm at 6:25 pm |
  5. Ferd

    Hey, here's a NEWS FLASH!!!


    You would be stoooopid to vote for him. But even dumber still to think he stands for "liberal" values. What are you dopes, on crack? All this fool has accomplished is allow the fiasco known as DUBYA to eff everything up in the last 8 years.

    Somebody kidnap this guy and take him to that island from LOST.

    January 30, 2008 06:25 pm at 6:25 pm |
  6. John

    Get a life Nader. This election is about change and you are the long gone past with an over inflated ego. Someone needs to commit you for a mental exam but i guess you have to shave your head first.

    January 30, 2008 06:25 pm at 6:25 pm |
  7. raj

    i will vote for him, i don't like puppet president

    January 30, 2008 06:25 pm at 6:25 pm |
  8. Eugene

    Yeah, GO RALPH!!! I'm not sure if you will get my vote, but I am happy you are running. I hope Bloomberg runs as an Independent and Ron Paul as a Libertarian if he doesn't get the Republican nomination. FIGHT THE [undemocratic] TWO PARTY SYSTEM!

    January 30, 2008 06:27 pm at 6:27 pm |
  9. Bob Mylott

    An irrelevant, egotistical has-been. He kept Al Gore out of the White House undermining the best shot to influence the things he supposedly cares about. Now he surfaces again when the Dems are poised to get back in? Sorry, i'm more than a little suspicious of his true motivations and wonder who might really be behind his potential candidacy.

    January 30, 2008 06:28 pm at 6:28 pm |
  10. Megan

    Stay out Nader!! You'll take down the Democratic party just like you did when you cost Al Gore the election. Stop splitting the vote and ruining our chances. Despite what you may think, Hillary and Obama are wayyyy better than any Republican would be.

    January 30, 2008 06:29 pm at 6:29 pm |
  11. Dan, TX

    Good for him. Maybe there's hope for McCain after all!

    January 30, 2008 06:31 pm at 6:31 pm |
  12. Carole

    Please please put your ego away. You saddled us with Bush. You will never will and you'll just pull enough people over to win it once again for the Republicans. NO MORE!

    January 30, 2008 06:31 pm at 6:31 pm |
  13. Betty Schier

    A little after 3:00 Pacific time (6:00 Eastern) I submitted a comment favorable to Mr. Nader. It was altogether civil, no name-calling. If CNN has chosen to censor out my comment, maybe that's why there are so many hateful comments about Nader and so few kind ones. (Oh, surely CNN couldn't be biased, could they?)

    January 30, 2008 06:31 pm at 6:31 pm |
  14. Vincent

    It's (a little less so, but still) a free country, so I've got no problem w/ the little guys like Dennis Kucinich, Ralph Nader & Rudy Giuliani wanting to run. If anything we need more viewpoints, and the thing about minor candidates is they're usually more issue-oriented than image-oriented.

    As a conservative though, I want to let Nader know that there's also no difference between McCain or Hillary either. Our party has basically become Democrats, so maybe you should campaign against McCain too. Could we please get someone outside the establishment which has shown they do not have the solutions? Preferably a Republican =).

    January 30, 2008 06:32 pm at 6:32 pm |
  15. b

    if he runs he has my vote!

    January 30, 2008 06:32 pm at 6:32 pm |
  16. misterburns35

    Nader, you suck. Do everyone a favor and keep your big ego out of this. Think of someone else besides yourself for once.

    January 30, 2008 06:33 pm at 6:33 pm |
  17. Joe

    I am now convinced Nader works for the Republican party as Democratic party poison.

    January 30, 2008 06:33 pm at 6:33 pm |
  18. D Mills Garland, Tx

    Nader, you helped put George Bush in office and look where that got us. Do the country a favor and stay out this time.

    January 30, 2008 06:33 pm at 6:33 pm |
  19. L. Blitz

    For what purpose? Look what we've had to endure for the last eight years thanks to the help of Mr. Nader. No thanks Nader. If you feel compelled to run for office why not run for a house or senate seat?

    January 30, 2008 06:33 pm at 6:33 pm |
  20. David Crosby

    i will be the first to bet that Nader gets money directly from the Republican National Committee and always has. He had some kinky dealings with Nixon's dirty tricks team during the 1972 campaign when they discovered that he could be bought.
    Who in their right mind would waste a vote on his irrelevancy?
    Scuttlebutt inside the beltway has always pegged him for one of J. Edgar Hoovers paid informants and inciters.
    Odd how he just pops up pretending to be such a friend of the little guy every election cycle, then just disappears again for four quiet years. Maybe Chuck Barris can be his running mate this time.

    January 30, 2008 06:34 pm at 6:34 pm |
  21. Brian


    Please do not run for election in 2008. I voted for you in 2000. I know you are a good man. But you have to understand, there comes a time when it's more important to be practical than to be idealistic. And your campaign is one of idealism in a time when we desperately need to be practical. Having Obama as a president would be infinitely better than any of the Republican candidates and after what your votes took from Gore in Florida I simply cannot stand by and watch it happen again. Do you realize that if you had not run for president, we would probably have never had George W. Bush as president? Look at what Al Gore has done for global warming. He has done more for environmentalism than you have ever been able to do, and I'm not trying to be mean, I'm just being honest. Imagine if he had been president. No War on Terror, no war on the environment, no war on the workers of America.

    Please do not run for president. Please.

    January 30, 2008 06:34 pm at 6:34 pm |
  22. Mike

    4,000 dead U.S. troops (my brother one of them) illustrate the serious consequences of Nader as spoiler from last time. Ralph runs for himself. Not for ideals, or "the people."

    January 30, 2008 06:35 pm at 6:35 pm |
  23. Claire

    Ralph Nader is an egomaniac and a LOSER who is delusional if he thinks he can run for President. Ralph, time to retire to Florida.

    January 30, 2008 06:36 pm at 6:36 pm |
  24. Eileen, Burbank, California

    I hold Ralph Nader responsible for the atrocities of the Bush administration; its excesses, its lies, the war, the deaths, because if Nader hadn't injected himself into the race, the Republicans would not have been so able to steal the presidency as they did – twice. Al Gore would have been elected and we would be in a far better place in this world than we are now. Nader is not much more than an supreme egoist who just is desperate to get his name in lights once again. This comes at the expense of the democrats and ultimately at the expense of the country.

    January 30, 2008 06:36 pm at 6:36 pm |
  25. Ed Lehner

    Ralph.... you blew it for Gore seven years ago and thank you very much for the wonderful dope that won and has gone on to the ruination of this country. Please preach your sermon, but stay the hell out of the presidential race. Don't screw it up again.

    January 30, 2008 06:36 pm at 6:36 pm |
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