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LETTERS TO THE TIMES

The Consequences of Nader's Candidacy

August 09, 2004

Re "Democratic Party Should Live Up to Its Name," Commentary, Aug 6: Ralph Nader accuses the Democratic Party of skulduggery in its attempts to keep him off the ballot. What he refuses to acknowledge is that the only consequence of his candidacy will be to improve President Bush's chances. When asked what the country would be like if Bush were to win, he avoids an answer by reciting his perceived shortcomings of the Democratic Party.

He claims to favor the president's defeat, but he does not honestly own up to the fact that Bush's victory would be worse than Kerry's. That political naivete should be enough to dismiss his claim that he is a "serious" candidate, should unmask the hypocrisy that underlies his campaign and will probably ensure his legacy as a petulant egotist, not a responsible prophet of a better America.

Paul Gaston

Charlottesville, Va.

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Sorry, Ralph. I honor your past contributions and share most of your beliefs. But I also realize that the vast majority of the electorate is not ready to go along with the likes of you and me. Too bad! But there are times when compromise is the better part of wisdom. You wrap yourself in the rhetoric of democracy, but the result last time has been the near-death of the very democracy you claim to serve.

Quit whining, and get behind John Kerry. There are lots of folks out here who will never forgive you if you stick us with the radical conservative policies of George W. Bush again.

Peter Clothier

Laguna Beach

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Ralph Nader ... unsafe at any speed.

Jerry Buck

Sherman Oaks

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