[1]Nader coming on strong

Nader coming on strong

An editorial from from

Supporters of John Kerry are kidding themselves if they think Ralph Nader won’t hurt their candidate. The latest Gallup Poll, taken April 5-8, gives him 4 percent. A Newsweek poll of 18- to 29-year-olds found 12 percent backing Nader, “at the expense of John Kerry.” And Democrats have to be worried about a survey in New Hampshire last month that found Nader with 8 percent.

Maybe Democrats should figure out why Nader is attracting votes, then do the same because Kerry appears dead in the water while Nader is gaining strength.

But they should worry more as they look at Iraq. The war there is not going well. Kerry’s position on the war is not much different from the president’s. Nader, by contrast, is fervently anti-war: “I have been against this war from the beginning.”

In early April, Gallup found that 28 percent of those surveyed wanted all U.S. troops out of Iraq, compared with 16 percent in January. If the war deteriorates, the sentiment for pulling out can only rise, and Nader (that is, Bush) will be the beneficiary. He’s the only anti-war game in town.

I disagree. Kerry could easily be the beneficiary. All he has to do is oppose the war. 

The people who want him to quit don’t know Ralph Nader. I have known him for a quarter-century. He is not like other politicians. While I disagree with him on practically every issue, I admire his seriousness, his vigor and his perseverance. This is his life. This is his movement, and it might be his moment. He is not stepping aside for anyone. Good for him.

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