Can Nader Defeat Bush?

by on February 22nd, 2004

Ralph Nader has announced that he is running yet again for President this year. And any reason he might have of running for President is going to be completely swallowed up by the anger and speculation of whether it was his campaign that elected Bush back in 2000.

Reactions from the Democratic field range from “I don’t care,” to “He’s an egomanical freak.” My thinking lies somewhere in the middle -it should be pretty easy not to care and dismiss him this year as long as we don’t get too caught up in dredging up memories of elections past, in which case we’ll give him all the time in the world he’s going need to make his case and bring on some of the his more natural sympathizers in as supporters to “take America back from the Corporate special interests.”

Who are already pretty much there in his court, by some accounts. “This Modern World” cartoonist Tom Tomorrow cites a poll in which if the election were held that day, Nader would’ve garnered about 4%. It’s nonsense, and he rightly says so, but it does put some perspective on it.

As long as we don’t take Nader too seriously this time around, I don’t think Nader is going to gather any more support than what he now has. He has no organization. The solid Nader voters are pretty much committed -if Nader wasn’t running they’d probably write his name in, or just stay home.

But to be fair, Ralph Nader does has some decent positions and is a smart advocate of the public welfare. Comparisons to Lyndon LaRoache, a guy who thinks constructing a trans-continental land bridge and a Free Silver approach for our domestic currency problems are pretty good ideas, does Nader no justice for his past acomplishments. Those comparisons should be avoided.

But, controversy is what puts these guys on the map. Ralph Nader’s approach seems to be how agitated he can get Democratic voters this year to denounce him. We’ll see how that works out for him as the election year progresses.

Edward E.J. Davis