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The Nader effect

October 01, 2008

Re "Little candidates that could," Opinion, Sept. 29

George Bush may or may not have won Florida by a few hundred votes in 2000. And the 90,000 Floridians who voted for Ralph Nader did indeed throw the race to the major-party candidate who was 100% hostile to everything Nader and his supporters held dear.

But the Florida debacle would not have mattered had 22,198 voters in New Hampshire not voted for Nader. He captured nearly 4% of that state's votes, allowing George Bush to win New Hampshire by a margin of 48% to 47%. Had the state's four electoral votes not been handed to Bush, Al Gore would have won the presidency without needing Florida.

Is this important in 2008? Absolutely, given that New Hampshire is again a swing state that could decide the election.

Karl Lawson

Camarillo

Re "Nader criticizes U.S. dictatorship," Sept. 27

The day after the debates, you finally acknowledged that Ralph Nader is running for president.

As Barack Obama endlessly reminds us, he was right on the Iraq war. Well, only Nader has been right on the economy -- and the war. Please tell me why the debates and the media shut out the most useful voice our nation has at this time?

Dorothy Walker

Calabasas

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