Politics

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Nader Joins 2008 Presidential Race

February 25, 2008 01:36 PM
by findingDulcinea Staff
Ralph Nader announced that he is running for president in 2008. The question is whether he has the following to play “spoiler” once again.

30-Second Summary

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Ralph Nader announced his candidacy during the Feb. 24 airing of the NBC news program “Meet the Press.”

Nader later told reporters, “In the last few years, big money and the closing down of Washington against citizen groups prevent us from trying to improve our country.”

During his career as a consumer advocate, Ralph Nader helped pass several key pieces of legislation. His work also contributed to the creation of the Environmental Protection Agency.

Although a large number of left-leaning voters respect his past work, many continue to hold a grudge against Nader for his “spoiler” role in the 2000 presidential election. This voter resentment came to bear on his lackluster 2004 presidential campaign.

Most reactions to Nader’s announcement range from derision to indifference. Reason magazine argues that Nader’s latest bid is inconsequential, as Barack Obama shares Nader’s progressive views and is a viable candidate.

“Nader's current run is predicated on umpteen false assumptions, the biggest ones being that Americans are angry at the party system and that the angriest ones are crying out for liberal leadership,” Reason writes.

The blog Wonkette is more tongue in cheek. Satirizing Nader’s insinuations that this year’s Democratic candidates are too closely aligned with right-wing interests, the blog writes that Obama’s proposals include “the elimination of all taxes on the upper class, weekend indentured servitude duties for lower and middle classes, several new Wars in Iraq, and the overt transfer of legislative and judicial power to Jack Abramoff.”

A column in the Detroit Free Press says that Nader will have little resonance with voters this election cycle: “Nader still has credibility as a critic of big business and big government—especially the big things they do together—but come on, he's not a viable candidate for president.”

Headline Link: ‘Ralph Nader Enters Presidential Race’

Key Player: Ralph Nader

Background: Nader’s past presidential bids

1992
1996
2000
2004

Historical Context: Past presidential ‘spoilers’

Ross Perot
George Wallace

Opinion & Analysis: Spoiler versus viable candidate

Reference: Ralph Nader’s official campaign site

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