Wednesday, June 09, 2004
Nader's new line....
This is link is to a subscription service, salon.com Please, it is well worth the money subscribe. You will not regret it. If you cna not here are some excerpts.
Nader's latest presidential campaign does not have an official slogan. It does, however, have a kind of official rationalization. "I think I'm going to take more votes away from Republicans than from Democrats," Nader says, almost every time he speaks. Democrats doubt this theory. And Nader admits no Republicans have asked him to leave the race or expressed fear he will siphon votes from Bush. "I don't think they're in with the trend," Nader explained.
But Nader insists his Republican backers are real. To find out more, I spent a good chunk of time over the last few weeks talking to Nader supporters in New England. I attended Nader meetups, Nader volunteer meetings, Nader campaign events and Nader press conferences. I spoke with Nader supporters who are still in high school, and Nader supporters with gray hair. I talked to people who have admired Nader since the 1960s, and others who first heard of him last year. I found Nader supporters who have voted for him multiple times, Nader supporters who have never voted, and Nader supporters who voted for Al Gore in 2000.
What I did not find, however, was a single supporter of Ralph Nader who voted for George W. Bush in 2000, or who had been planning to support Bush this year before Nader entered the race. After a while, I felt like a stymied naturalist stalking a rare species. Sure, Naderus Republicanus must exist somewhere, but it is an unusual creature, capable of eluding human observation for long stretches of time.
Republicans are supposedly most independent-minded. Take Greg Stott, a schoolteacher from Goshen, N.H., who attended a recent Nader press conference in Concord, the state capital, holding a "Teachers for Ralph" sign. Stott is a registered Democrat. Does he know any Republicans or former Bush voters who are supporting Nader this year?
"No, I don't," replied Stott. "That's a pretty big leap. I haven't met anybody [like that] yet. I have met a lot of Democrats who have switched over. I mean, a lot."
Even Nader himself has only caught a few fleeting glimpses of his Republican backers. Unable to locate Naderus Republicanus, I sat down with Nader for an interview in Concord, to ask him about the subject. "Have you encountered people who have told you they supported Republicans in the past, and Bush in 2000?" I queried. "Oh, yes," Nader answered immediately.
"Georgia, for example. Three of them came up at a volunteer gathering and said 'I'm fed up, my Republican friends are fed up.' At a retirement village in Arizona, the same thing happened."
Well, every vote counts. But Nader had just finished a press conference at which he claimed more Republicans than Democrats supported him in New Hampshire, in 2000. (Bush beat Gore in the state by 7,211 votes, while Nader collected 22,198 votes.) That Nader would then point to a handful of apparent supporters in the Sun Belt -- the only examples he gave me -- will probably not convince Democrats about his theory. Which, in turn, is all the more reason Democrats should be interested in finding out more about Ralph Nader's supporters.
After all, Nader still sits at 4 percent in the latest ABC News/Washington Post poll -- high enough to be a decisive factor in the race again, and higher than the 2.7 percent he drew in 2000. Somebody is backing Nader. Who are these people, and why do they support him?
Two distinct topics, actually, seem to matter most to Naderites: the war in Iraq, and the consolidation of power -- economic, political, cultural -- in the hands of large corporations. Again and again, when I asked people at Nader events why they supported him, those were the first issues to surface.
Vote Kerry for Christ's sake
We can not afford another 4 years of this. If we do, I may be forced to become an ex-pat. Why because... I am already broke. and you may as well be roke in a place that you can agree with the govt.