Third Party & Independents Archives

Signature Gatherers Hide Nader's Name

Today’s Charleston Gazette picks up Nader’s campaign trail:

A mysterious pair of men were gathering signatures on a petition Monday outside the Kroger store on Charleston’s West Side — apparently in an effort to get independent presidential candidate Ralph Nader on West Virginia’s ballot in November.

The story continues,

One of the men told at least two people, including a Gazette reporter, that the petitions were not for Nader. But Nader supporters were gathering signatures outside a Dunbar Kroger store on Sunday, and one woman at the West Side Kroger said she saw the petitions, and they were for Nader.

Helen Lanham said one of the men asked her if she was a registered voter and whether she would sign a petition to “get a minority on the ballot.” She asked who it was, and they “hemmed and hawed” and wouldn’t tell her.

They had the name of the candidate covered up with a pencil on the petition, Lanham said. She said she moved the pencil aside and saw it was for Nader.

Cindy Smith, from the Secretary of State's office, notes that the top of the petition must have the candidates name and "you have the right to see that."

Whoever is responsible, it seems to confirm a certain duplicity in at least part of the Nader camp. Howard Dean all but pointed this out in his debate with Nader last week on NPR. "This is not going to help the progressive cause in America," Dean said. "The thing that upsets me so much about this is, you have the right to ... get in bed with whoever you want to, but don't call the Democratic Party full of corporate interests. They have their problems, we all have ours, none of us are pure. And this campaign of yours is far from pure." (excerpt source Salon).

Nader's campaign is staggeringly heartbreaking. His platform is so expansive and extroadinary that any educated liberal should have a hard time not, at least, being amazed. But any educated liberal, even an third-party one, should know that his campaign is doing very little to spur debate (except the inward sort, on how the campaign is being funded and operated) and will end up hurting the majoritarian liberal cause, the Democrats, in November.

The Gazette notes in W.Va. Nader's got not 2% of the votes in election 200 and Bush won by more than 6%.

Disclaimer -- I am on the staff of the Gazette's teen publication Flipside.

Posted by Ry Rivard at July 13, 2004 1:28 PM