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Monday, February 23, 2004

Nader Also Not Bush, Worry Dems...

Now this is a pretty bad move for the Democrats. They may as well hold up a big sign that says "Our candidate is weak enough already- quit making him look worse!".

Bad enough that the party seems to stand "for" nothing (only "against" things, most of all Bush). But now they look incredibly weak as they freak over Nader's entry into the race. Sure, one can argue that in 2000, he drew a f ew votes away from Al Gore. But that's obviously only a concern if your candidate is as weak or uninspiring as Al Gore ( or John Kerry).

I saw a poll a few days back that illustrates the real problem Nader presents for the Democrats:

When those who would vote for Bush are asked the main reason why, many (30 percent) say because "he's doing a good job," while others cite his personal character (23 percent), positions on the issues (15 percent) and leadership qualities (11 percent).

Kerry supporters most frequently say "he's not Bush" (27 percent) and another 11 percent "he can beat Bush," with 20 percent referencing his positions on the issues, that he is a Democrat (14 percent) and his personal character (eight percent.)

Essentially, the only thing that Kerry has going for him is not being Bush, a trait shared by Green Party candidate Ralph Nader, as well as Democratic Senator John Edwards. Sure, President Bush has a track record as a President, and that gives him an incumbent advantage in voters' minds- they can easily visualize him as being a US President. But criminy Christmas, Kerry has a 32-year track record in the Senate and all sorts of press from his Vietnam days ( which you'd think would have some bipartisan appeal- the conservatives loving his veteran war hero status, the liberals loving his denuncuation of the war ex post facto.)

The Fox News Poll goes on to say that Bush and kerry are in a statistical dead heat, but with Nader running, he would capture 4% of the vote, thus handing the election to Bush. I wonder if these are the folks that would have voted for Dean.

Ralph Nader: Also Not Bush.

The real reason the Dems hate Nader now, though ( and possibly even the reason they turned on Dean) is because unlike John Kerry, Nader actually standsfor something. Hell, even I kind of see why the guy's coming from- identifying some decent problems, although I don't think the solutions he suggests ( more government regulation) are right. Nader won't play ball, he won't "get on board" with the "stand against" /Beat Bush at all costs" crowd. Kerry takes as much corporate money as Bush, supposedly, and flipflops his positions whenever it is politically popular ( as with the Vietnam and Iraq wars, gay marriage, etc...) Nader takes a position not because he can win or "beat Bush", but because he really believes it's right, and wants to publicize and mainstream it. Even if you disagree with him, you have to respect that. I'm sure a career politician like John Kerry can't even comprehend what Nader's doing right now.

The only thing Kerry has going for him is now going for someone else as well, and the Democrats are scared. And showing that kind of weakness is political death, if you ask me. I wouldn't be surprised if the polls start rapidly shifting away from Kerry now, toward Bush and Nader, whom agree with them or not, stand for things and are to be respected for their principles.

If all you care about is "electability" over substance like the democrats who rejected Howard Dean ( the only inspiring candidate they've had in decades) , then someone with a modicum of integrity like Ralph Nader is unsafe at any speed.

Some clever cat over at the Reason Hit and Run message board suggested that Bush should donate money to Nader's campaign...and that Kerry should donate to a Libertarian candidate to pull votes from Bush. Seems like a strategy for Kerry to win at this point, if you ask me... but not likely- where's a Ross Perot when the democrats need them?

That's the way Clinton got elected, after all, don't forget.

Posted by Rex @ 10:40 AM

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