The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

Nader details platform on SMU campus

Consumer advocate and presidential candidate Ralph Naderdetailed his platform to students and journalists on Thursday inthe Hughes-Trigg Ballroom as he makes a second bid for the WhiteHouse.

Nader, who also ran for president in 2000 as a Green Partycandidate, announced his candidacy for the 2004 race on Sunday. Hewill be running again as an Independent.

Corporations and corporate crime are taking over Washington, hesaid.

“People of this country must end corporate domination ofour government in Washington, D.C.,” Nader said. Corporationsdo not need the same protection and rights under the Constitutionas individuals do, he said.

His campaign will focus on President Bush’s record and the”fiscal irresponsibility of the Bush administration.”Since the president has taken office, he said, the federal debt hasrapidly increased and much of the jump can be attributed tocorporate welfare.

Nader also discussed the similarities between the Republican andDemocratic parties. He said that the United States has essentiallybecome a one party system, which rarely challenges incumbents.

“[Democrats and Republicans] don’t like voices andchoices other than their own,” Nader said. “At the sametime, they are becoming more similar.”

Responding to criticism that he pulled votes away from theDemocrats in 2000, Nader said, “Al Gore was defeated byGeorge W. Bush and the shenanigans in Florida.” He added thatDemocrats need to look inside their own party if they let a”bumbling governor from Texas with a horrible record”beat them.

Nader said many young people align themselves with his ideas andsupport his candidacy.

“We run an idealistic campaign,” he said. “Wetalk candidly, openly, and we’re willing to challenge power.Young people are good about all these things.” He said thathe intends to organize young people, reduce cynicism and increaseinvolvement in the political process.

The focus then turned to the likelihood of Nader being electedin 2004. While he said he expects his name to be on the ballot inevery state, he knows he is facing an “uphill fight.”While third parties have historically been unsuccessful, he addedthat third parties push the agenda and initiate reform.

SMU political science professor Dennis Simon agreed thatDemocrats and Republicans differ on some issues but areincreasingly similar.

“He’s not about winning; he’s about theagenda,” Simon said. “He’s the mosquito thatwants to bite the political establishment.”

More to Discover