May 12th, 2008
11:30 AM ET
13 years ago

Barr announces presidential bid

CNN

Watch part of Bob Barr's announcement Monday.

(CNN) - Former Republican Rep. Bob Barr formally jumped into the White House race Monday as a candidate for the Libertarian Party's presidential nomination.

Barr, the onetime darling of conservatives who led the impeachment fight against former President Bill Clinton, said he is running because voters want a choice beyond the two political parties.

"They believe that America has more and better to offer than what the current political situation is serving up to us," he said Monday at the National Press Club in Washington. "The reason for that is very simple, they believe in America as I believe in America. We believe in an America that is not and should not be and should never be driven by fear as current policies on behalf of both parties are in this country."

Barr, 59, represented Georgia's 7th congressional district from 1995-2003, and became an increasingly vocal critic of President Bush, especially over the president's support of the Patriot Act. He formally left the Republican Party in 2006.

It remains unclear how much support he will draw, but CNN's Bill Schneider says Barr could be to John McCain what Ralph Nader was to Al Gore in 2000.

"If this is an extremely close election, even if Bob Barr gets a handful of votes, it could make a difference, just as Ralph Nader once did," Schneider said. "He is a conservative who attracts mostly Republican voters. He is critical of the Iraq war. McCain supports the Iraq war. There are many conservatism and Republicans who ware critical of the war in Iraq and some of them may decide to vote for Bob Barr to register their protests.

Related Video: Watch Senior Political Analyst Bill Schneider give his take on Barr's entry to the race and the latest superdelegate count.


Filed under: Uncategorized
soundoff (347 Responses)
  1. TC

    who

    May 12, 2008 12:05 pm at 12:05 pm |
  2. s

    Good for him ... and thus a spoiler effect for McCain!!!

    May 12, 2008 12:05 pm at 12:05 pm |
  3. Eva, VA

    Beautiful.

    Obama 08

    May 12, 2008 12:05 pm at 12:05 pm |
  4. Navy Vet.

    I'm an Obama supporter, but I really feel bad for Sen. McCain after this announcement. Here after all of these months, when we finally get ready for a one on one, head to head battle for the White House this guy comes out of the woodwork! I'm very happy for Sen. Obama, but really do hate it for Sen. McCain.

    May 12, 2008 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  5. Rom,NY

    Go ahead Mr. Barr, we as Democrats support your bid and strongly count on you to cut into Mc Bush votes in the general election

    May 12, 2008 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  6. Independent

    Jusrt another old hack trying to throw a monkey wrench in this process. I am from Georgia, and he was dumb as a brick. Anyone would be wasting their vote on him, be it Republican or Democrat.

    May 12, 2008 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  7. BACK OFF

    do you think you clean enough to impeach CLINTON???
    clean your self please

    May 12, 2008 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  8. John Egbuniwe

    A third party into the 2008 presidentail election will make an already exciting contest more interesting. This is what democracy is all about.

    May 12, 2008 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  9. Levae

    what a joke. Who's next Rush Limbaugh

    May 12, 2008 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  10. Tom,West Michigan

    It's amazing how such characters can surface just when you'd
    almost forgotten how bad they were as legislators! This is one of the
    REALLY stubborn Republicans.

    May 12, 2008 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  11. Dave, CA

    Oh brother.

    May 12, 2008 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  12. MC- Atlanta,GA

    Thank you Bob Barr – your doing us a favor – siphen off as many votes from McCain as you can!

    May 12, 2008 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  13. TF, CO

    Hillary supporters your should vote for this guy!!

    May 12, 2008 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  14. BettiH, Indianapolis, IN.

    Never heard of him.

    May 12, 2008 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  15. Porter

    A growing percentage of Americans will no longer tolerate socialism-lite (McCain) and will certainly not accept socialism-heavy (Obama). This system has failed everywhere it's been tried. France has run a deficit for 30 consecutive years! Or, look no further than our own social security system. Catastrophic failures! Barr will provide a nice alternative.

    May 12, 2008 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  16. Nom Deplume

    The republicans just got their Ralph Nader (or Ross Perot, since he was responsible for Clinton winning).

    May 12, 2008 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
  17. Porter

    A growing percentage of Americans will no longer tolerate socialism-lite (McCain) and will certainly not accept socialism-heavy (Obama). This system has failed everywhere it's been tried. France has run a deficit for 30 consecutive years! Or, look no further than our own social security system. Catastrophic failures! Barr will provide a nice alternative.

    May 12, 2008 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
  18. Martin

    Yes We Are Cons
    Obama/Wtright '08

    WRITE IN HILLARY !

    May 12, 2008 12:12 pm at 12:12 pm |
  19. Ron R

    LOL

    May 12, 2008 12:12 pm at 12:12 pm |
  20. lol

    conservatives aren't so fickle... this will have no bearing. It may acutally pull the right side of the democratic party.

    May 12, 2008 12:12 pm at 12:12 pm |
  21. Brian

    woohoo conservatives for Barr!

    May 12, 2008 12:13 pm at 12:13 pm |
  22. Carl

    I just don't get it. He says he hasn't seen any candidate that is talking about the real issues. We have a primary system in the States for a reason and I think issues have been discussed. Having more independents run just takes votes away from the more serious candidates. He probably just wants to be able to write and sell a book entitled "why I ran for president"

    May 12, 2008 12:13 pm at 12:13 pm |
  23. Michael

    He has my vote

    May 12, 2008 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm |
  24. CW4Barak

    Hey, anyone who takes a substantial amount of votes from McCain is o.k. with me....just don't rain on Obama's parade!

    Obama '08

    May 12, 2008 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm |
  25. bigben

    He would have to be better than Obama

    May 12, 2008 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm |
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