FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

Still Smearing Ralph Nader for 2000

by SAM SMITH

 

The Atlantic Monthly is perpetuating the Ralph Nader myth, blaming him for Bush’s election in 2000. This is, at best sloppy journalism; at saddest, extreme denial; and at worst a plain lie. Here are just a few of the actual facts:

* A Progressive Review study of poll results throughout the campaign found no correlation between Bush’s percentage change and that of Nader except in July and August when the change was minimal.

* For example, in September of 2000, Gore’s average poll result went up 7.5 points over August, Nader’s only declined by one point. Similarly, in November, Gore’s average poll tally declined 5.7 points but Nader’s only went up 0.8 points.

* In Florida, it was also true. In nine successive surveys in which Nader pulled only two or three points, Gore’s total varied by seven points. As late as two weeks before the election, Gore was ahead by as much as seven to ten points.

* As Michael Eisencher reported in Z Magazine, 20% of all Democratic voters, 12% of all self-identified liberal voters, 39% of all women voters, 44% of all seniors, one-third of all voters earning under $20,000 per year and 42% of those earning $20-30,000 annually, and 31% of all voting union members cast their ballots for Bush.

* According to exit polling, those who voted for Nader were disproportionately under 30, independent, first time voters, formerly Perot voters, and of no organized religion. Sixty-two percent of Nader’s voters were Republicans, independents, third-party voters and nonvoters. In other words, many of his voters did not naturally belong o the Democratic party.

* The public had a cynical view of both major candidates with 41% believing that both would say anything to win votes. Barely half considered either major candidate honest and trustworthy. And an astounding 51% had reservations about their own vote.

* Perhaps the most important, but seldom mentioned, factor in the outcome was the impact of the Clinton scandals. 68% of voters thought Clinton would go down in history more for his scandals than for his leadership. 44% said that the scandals were somewhat to very important and 57% thought the country to be on the wrong moral track.

* In short, the individual who did the most harm to Gore (aside from himself) was Bill Clinton. If Gore had distanced himself from the Clinton moral miasma he would probably be president today.

* Kevin Zeese points out that had Nader not run, Bush would have won by more in Florida. CNN’s exit poll showed Bush at 49% and Gore at 47%, with two percent not voting in a hypothetical Nader-less Florida race.

* Gore lost his home state of Tennessee, Bill Clinton’s Arkansas and traditionally Democratic West Virginia; with any one of these, Gore would have won.

* Nine million Democrats voted for Bush, and less than half of the three million Nader voters were Democrats.

Zeese also notes, “The Democrats lost the 2002 congressional elections, the California and New York governorships, and many state legislatures throughout the country.”

Surely Nader is not to blame for those defeats.

SAM SMITH is the publisher of the Progressive Review, where this essay originally appeared.

 

 

Sam Smith edits the Progressive Review.

More articles by:

CounterPunch Magazine

minimag-edit

bernie-the-sandernistas-cover-344x550

zen economics

February 22, 2017
Mike Whitney
Liberals Beware: Lie Down With Dogs, Get Up With Fleas
John Grant
On Killers and Bullshitters*
Peter Linebaugh
Catherine Despard, Abolitionist
Patrick Cockburn
The Bitter Battle for Mosul
Ted Rall
Sue the Bastards? It’s Harder Than You Think
Yoav Litvin
The Emergence of the Just Jew
Kim Scipes
Strategic Thinking and Organizing Resistance
Norman Pollack
Mar-a-Lago, Ideological Refuge: Berchtesgaden, II
Fred Donner
Nixon and the Chennault Affair: From Vietnam to Watergate
Carl Kandutsch
Podesta vs. Trump
Ike Nahem
To the Memory of Malcolm X: Fifty Years After His Assassination
Jesse Jackson
Trump’s Tough Talk Won’t Fix Chicago
Paul Donnelly
Betsy DeVos and the War on Public Education
Ebony Slaughter-Johnson
The End of an Alliance for Police Reform
Richard Lawless
Wall Street Demanded the Nuclear Option and the Congress Delivered
Liaquat Ali Khan
Yes, Real Donald Trump is a Muslim!
Ryan LaMothe
“Fire” and Free Speech
CounterPunch News Service
Bloody Buffalo Billboards
February 21, 2017
Sharmini Peries - Michael Hudson
Finance as Warfare: the IMF Lent to Greece Knowing It Could Never Pay Back Debt
CJ Hopkins
Goose-stepping Our Way Toward Pink Revolution
John Wight
Firestarter: the Unwelcome Return of Tony Blair
Roger Harris
Lenin Wins: Pink Tide Surges in Ecuador…For Now
Shepherd Bliss
Japanese American Internment Remembered, as Trump Rounds Up Immigrants
Boris Kagarlitsky
Trump and the Contradictions of Capitalism
Robert Fisk
The Perils of Trump Addiction
Deepak Tripathi
Theresa May: Walking the Kingdom Down a Dark Alley
Sarah Anderson
To Save Main Street, Tax Wall Street
Howard Lisnoff
Those Who Plan and Enjoy Murder
Franklin Lamb
The Life and Death Struggle of the Children of Syria
Binoy Kampmark
A Tale of Two Realities: Trump and Israel
Kim C. Domenico
Body and Soul: Becoming Men & Women in a Post-Gender Age
Mel Gurtov
Trump, Europe, and Chaos
Stephen Cooper
Steinbeck’s Road Map For Resisting Donald Trump
February 20, 2017
Bruce E. Levine
Humiliation Porn: Trump’s Gift to His Faithful…and Now the Blowback
Melvin Goodman
“Wag the Dog,” Revisited
Robert Hunziker
Fukushima: a Lurking Global Catastrophe?
David Smith-Ferri
Resistance and Resolve in Russia: Memorial HRC
Kenneth Surin
Global India?
Norman Pollack
Fascistization Crashing Down: Driving the Cleaver into Social Welfare
Patrick Cockburn
Trump v. the Media: a Fight to the Death
Susan Babbitt
Shooting Arrows at Heaven: Why is There Debate About Battle Imagery in Health?
Matt Peppe
New York Times Openly Promotes Formal Apartheid Regime By Israel
David Swanson
Understanding Robert E. Lee Supporters
Michael Brenner
The Narcissism of Donald Trump
Martin Billheimer
Capital of Pain
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail