Ralph Nader has formed a presidential exploratory committee and said he will launch another presidential run if he believes he can raise enough money to appear on most state ballots in the fall. …

…now with John Edwards also out of the race, Nader said he feels his candidacy is more urgent than ever.

“When Kucinich threw in the towel, now you have Edwards gone — who’s going to carry the torch of democratic populism against the relentless domination of our government” by “powerful corporations,” he told ABC.

“You can’t just brush these issues to the side because the candidates are ignoring them.” …

Responding to charges that he was a “spoiler” who may have cost Al Gore a presidential victory in 2000, Nader said the major candidates “represent parties that spoil our electoral system and our government.”
[From Newsmax.com]

Comments

  1. #1 Left_Wing_Fox
    February 3, 2008

    Yeah, Great…

    If Nader spent the other 4 years between election agitating to change the system of counting votes to allow multiple parties, worked nationally to build a viable third party alternative, or did anything other that leap in front of the media to tilt at windmills only during the elections, I might consider voting for him.

    As it is though, he’s just another media-starved celebrity looking to get his ego stroked.

  2. #2 Craig
    February 3, 2008

    Except Nader isn’t stroking his ego. He states he is running because the candidates he’d rather see can’t get the support of their party, and have dropped out. And as for him spoiling the election for Gore, if Gore could appeal to people who ended up voting for Nader, then they would have voted for Gore instead. He didn’t, so why does he deserve their votes? Why should I vote for quasi-Republicans like Obama or Clinton? As it stands now it’s simply because they are less extreme than any Republic candidate, but that’s a poor reason to have to vote for someone. It’s this whole attitude of “I have to vote for a Democrat or Republican” that has lead us to where we are politically which is in the middle of a very big mess.

  3. #3 Greg Laden
    February 3, 2008

    Craig:

    If Nader runs, please, just don’t vote at all! OK?

  4. #4 Lance
    February 4, 2008

    Anyone who votes for Nader doesn’t have a clue. If you want a viable third party you need candidates in office at smaller levels of government and on up. You don’t start with the presidency, you end there.

    Craig,
    If you would have voted for a democratic candidate until Nader was on the ballot then Nader is diluting votes. Voting for someone you don’t entirely agree with, but is a better choice IS democracy. If you were really motivated for change, you would start your own party, or get motivated and join a party you could bring change to.

  5. #5 Anne Gilbert
    February 4, 2008

    Ralph Nader is considering running for president? Again?????? Oh, no, pllllleeeeaaaasssseeee, no, no, no! Not if we want real change in the US, and not another “Rethuglican” in the White House. . . .
    Anne G

  6. #6 the real cmf
    February 4, 2008

    Like LWF said, if Nader was ever a serious candidate, he would spend time in between election year face op’s building a politic that is reliable, and has a base. He is clearly a Republican fop.
    BTW, what MEANINGFUL THING has he done since 1972 ?

  7. #7 Left_Wing_Fox
    February 4, 2008

    Craig, It’s not merely “will” that’s causing this problem, it’s simple math.

    The Founding Fathers based their democratic system on Simple Plurality voting: Whoever gets the most votes, wins. Simple, but mathematically problematic if you have more than one party.

    I.e. Say you have running a Liberal, a Democratic Socialist, and a Fascist. It’s a pretty clear bet that no-one voting Liberal or Social Democrat would want the Fascist to win. Yet in such a scenrio, the Fascist could win with as little as 33.4% of the popular vote if the other two get 33.3 percent. The more parties, the smaller the potential victory could be. It’s that same process that weeds out opposition to primary candidates: Early in the race, opposition to an establishment candidate might be split, and because each of the regions vote in succession, a lead might be solidified during the split vote to make a majority opposition of the remaining primaries unable to express the general consensus of the voters.

    It also doesn;t help that at virtually every level of the American government there are blocks against “Mob Rule”; Every state recieves the same number of senators regardless of population, and the makeup of the House of Representatives can also leave states unequally represented. Gerrymandering districts, the Electoral College, and the staggered primary season all run counter to “majority rule”.

    In the years since, alternate methods of counting the vote have been proposed and implemented; Proportional Representation, Instant Runoff Voting, Borden Counts, Approval Voding and Condorcet voting all now have the capability to determing the majority will of the public amongst multiple candidates in a way superior to Approval voting. While none of these are perfect, they are all much more appropriate for a multi-party system.

    Because this system directly benefits the Two Parties, don’t expect any change to happen from those parties to the elctoral system. To my mind, the most important thing Americans can do to change this system is to modify this method of counting votes. The big advantage is that this is possible at the local level: Each state is responsible for choosing how the Electors, Senators, and representatives are chosen. Because of this, these changes can be implemented at local levels without having to change the US constitution. The change brought by sending a more diverse mix of Senators and Representatives to Congress could force more rational coalitions to enact legislation, and reduce resistance to further chanages.

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