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government selection 2004

Nader fails to make ballot in Oregon

For his second attempt, Nader fails to get on the ballot here in Oregon
Nader doesn't make ballot in Oregon

The news could bolster Sen. John Kerry's bid to keep Oregon, and could hurt President Bush's efforts to take the state

Statesman Journal
September 1, 2004 - 1:55 PM

Secretary of State Bill Bradbury announced today that independent candidates Ralph Nader and Sandra Kucera failed to qualify for the Oregon presidential and vice presidential ballot.

The Nader/Kucera campaign turned in 15,088 valid signatures, failing to meet the statutory requirement of 15,306 to qualify for the ballot.

Oregon is expected to be a highly contested state in this year's presidential election. Al Gore won Oregon by the slimmest of margins in 2000. Many pundits believe that Nader's name on this year's ballot could be enough to push Oregon into the grasp of President Bush, and away from the Democratic challenger, Sen. John Kerry.

Consequently, many Republicans had been advocating for Nader to be on the Oregon ballot, and many Democrats had been fighting to keep him off the ballot.

The Nader/Kucera campaign brought signatures to the Secretary of State's Elections Division last week, but many of the signatures do not count because of the Nader campaign's failure to comply with the legal requirements governing petition circulation and signature sheets.

"It's my duty to uphold the law, and it is clear that signatures on sheets that do not comply with the law cannot be counted," Bradbury said.

There were numerous problems with the Nader/Kucera petitions, according to Bradbury's office. Among the many requirements that were not met by the Nader/Kucera campaign, the law requires that signature sheets be numbered by the campaign before being turned in to the county clerks for signature verification. The numbers allow sheets to be tracked and double-checked between the county clerks and the Elections Division. Elections officials found that in many cases signature sheets were not numbered by the campaign at all, or the numbers were altered by the Nader campaign after the sheets left the county clerks but before they were turned in to the Secretary of State.

"Any alteration of public documents opens the door to fraud," said Bradbury, "and threatens the integrity of the elections process."

Additional signatures could not be counted because of the Nader/Kucera campaign's failure to properly sign and date signature sheets, the secretary of state's office said. The sign and date rules, recently upheld by a federal court, also serve to prevent fraud.

Bradbury a Democrat went on to say that he was "disappointed in the Nader campaign," but that "Nader failed to follow the law, and my job is to uphold it."

don't count on it 01.Sep.2004 14:43

former Kerry voter

Just yesterday I had decided I would vote for Kerry after watching what was happening at the convention both inside and outside. But now, I'm going to write in Ralph Nader who I had never considered voting for in this election. But I cannot stand the democrats assaults on our democracy. For all their money, time, and efforts to attack Ralph Nader instead of Bush (hey ever consider attacking Bush's war record Kerry campaigners?) the democrats have only succeeding in losing this voter, and perhaps others. Great strategy... It's a good thing the democrats have gotten used to losing over the last several decades.

Time to focus attention on local democrats 01.Sep.2004 14:53

pissed off

the local democrats are a bunch of sleaze bags. from telling lies about nader, to packing the hall on the night of the nominating convention and not signing the petition so he couldn't get the ballot, to visiting homes of people who signed the nader petition and harrassing them, local democrats have shown they are not democratically minded at all.

i can understand how, at this point, some people might consider that every john kerry yard sign should be considered a target to be uprooted, slashed up, or burned. if the democrats want to play dirty, perhaps some non-kerry/pro-democracy folks might start playing dirty too.

this isn't a prediction or a provocation, just a surmise.

i personally wouldn't shed any tears, though, if i saw that kind of thing starting to happen around town. fuckers.

grrr 01.Sep.2004 15:12

fuck the democrats

Anyone got the number to Bradbury's office?

Fuck the demo-fascists 01.Sep.2004 15:15

really pissed off

This will be no boost to Kerry's campaign. Nader supporters (and there are many) WILL NOT VOTE FOR KERRY.

I'll write Nader in. Hopefully, all others who are disgusted by what the democrats have done and continue to do to Nader's campaign will WRITE NADER IN!

Fuck the sleazy tactics of the demo-fascists. I'll never vote for a democrat again. No thoughtful person should.

. 01.Sep.2004 15:18

fuck Bill Bradbury

Call and be counted.

Elections Division

phone (503) 986-1518
fax (503) 373-7414
TTY (503) 378-5812

Vote Green and Vote for Cobb 01.Sep.2004 15:47

Brian Setzler

I'm pissed at the Democrats as well. Talk about limiting democracy! We've (Greens) run into this regularly for a dozen years now so I'm not surprised.

It makes me so mad I probably will never vote for another Democrat either (Not that I do very often but for sure not now unless they strongly support most aspects of the Green agenda).

However, David Cobb and the Green Party WILL BE be on the ballot here in Oregon and I hope people will vote Cobb and work to grow and strengthen the Green Party. We need an independent, non-corporate, progressive party and the Green Party fits the bill. Writing in Nader at this point is pretty pointless. I don't believe the Secretary of State's office even counts those votes.

sorry Brian 01.Sep.2004 15:56


The Greens, yourself included, have been borrowing pages from the democrat playbook instead of promoting your own candidate who most Americans haven't even heard of. So it is hard to have any more respect for the green campaign than the democrat campaign. I am certain that Nader will get more votes than Cobb, hence Cobb is the pointless vote. But I will probably vote for Keane. So don't lose hope, even when Cobb causes the green party to lose ballot status in several states.

They do count write in's 01.Sep.2004 16:00


I was searching around the Secretary of State website and came across this link


* To write-in a candidate:

* Clearly print his or her name on the dotted line provided
on the ballot

* Fill in the oval or complete the arrow next to the name
you wrote-in

You must do both for your vote to be counted!

ditto "pissed off" 01.Sep.2004 16:03


I agree that it is time to focus on local dems. I'm glad there is a challenger on Wyden's left, and I look forward to learning more about Keane. I think it is VERY realistic for non-Dem leftists (Green, independent, Socialist, whatever...)to win several seats in the Oregon legislature, Portland City council, and Commissioners seats in several counties. I'd love to see a good campaign for Governor also.

Take it easy man 01.Sep.2004 16:15


As to the comments of Pissed Off:

I sympathize and agree with the anger you are voicing with regards to the tactics of the democratic party machine here in Oregon. However, I think you comments about trashing Kerry yard signs are misguided:

I understand your frustration but the answer is not to attack freedom of speech. Those yard signs may have been supplied by the democratic party but in the context of a sign in someone's yard or a sticker on someone's car they become a personal political statement. Weather or not you agree with these politics I think it is not only wrong ethically to try to suppress that expression but also deeply counterproductive.

The fact is, in a democracy (and here I am imagining a functional and healthy democracy) people must strive for consensus. I am all for radical agendas but in the long term, there are only two ways to achieve unpopular goals. The first is by changing peoples minds and convincing them of the rightness of your point of view and by extention making an unpopular idea popular. The second is at the point of a gun.

There is certainly no groundswell of support for a violent overthrow of the American government (except perhaps if you ask the rest of the world) so it falls to progressives to win people to the rightness of our cause through persuasion. An argument for a more inclusive democracy, I submit to you, is undermined by attacking individual political expression such as yard signs.

Thanx for listening

I am promoting Cobb 01.Sep.2004 16:16

Brian Setzler

How am I borrowing pages from the Democratic playbook? I DO work to promote Cobb (and have worked to help Ralph this year as well).

Why do you blame me and/or Cobb campaign for him not being a household name? The fact is we aren't covered by the corporate media (nor are Libertarians, Reform, Constitution, Peace and Freedom, etc.). Ralph is covered because he creates conflict and a specticle and conflict sells corporate papers.

Cobb and the Green Party have run an aggressive campaign given our limited resources. David and Patricia have campaigned all across the US and have plans right up till Nov 2. The idea that we haven't been aggressive is simply a smear.

Many Greens, me included, would rather spread limited funds and energy on campaigns where we have a chance to make a difference. Here in Oregon we are working on the PUD campaign to get PGE back from Enron, working to defeat yet another anti-gay amendment, promoting Keane and other local candidates.

There are also Greens working on the Nader campaign and unfortunately, some who are helping Kerry as well.

I called SS Office 01.Sep.2004 16:24

Brian Setzler

I'm pissed. Total bullshit to disenfranchise 18,000+ voters because sheets weren't numbered correctly.

I hope Bill Bradbury never wins another statewide race.

Hehehe... 01.Sep.2004 16:25

Tony Blair's dog

There were 218 votes less than the "statutory requirement".

Let me tell you that they didn't dare to make the difference
bigger than that or people "will understand".

Too bad for them that people did see the fraud anyway ;-)

Write-ins 01.Sep.2004 16:29

Brian Setzler

I believe you can always write someone in. What I was saying is that I don't believe the SOS count the write ins other than an aggregate count. So a vote for Mickey Mouse, Martha Stewart and Ralph Nader are the same thing when the count comes out.

Please correct me if I'm wrong. This was what happened to us in 1992 when we were promoting the candidacy of Ron Daniels for President.

Naderites own fault cause there just aren't that many of 'em 01.Sep.2004 17:21

Sick of Nader

Wah wah wah, let me get you a tissue.

For the third time, Naderites have failed and try to place the blame anywhere but on their own shoulders. Will you please admit that the people just don't really care about Ralph or want him as their represenative? We already know he's less popular than a basketball tournament and that he can't get 1000 of his own supporters together at once. By all means, write him in as your candidate (I myself have written in Hunter S. Thompson for all presidential elections in which I have been eligible to vote and don't plan on changing course), but please stop with the delusions about the man's role in politics today and the histrionics about disenfranchisement.

Write-in 01.Sep.2004 17:24

George Bender

This may not be over yet. One news article I read said the Nader campaign may take it to court. According to a recent statement from the campaign, the Sec. of State had given them misleading instructions about numbering the petitions. It is outrageous that something as petty as this should keep Nader off the ballot.

I will write in Nader if he's not on the ballot.

I will never vote for any Democrats again.

Too bad Nader and the Greens had to get a divorce, but that's pretty much what always happens to the American left. I changed my voter registration from Green to independent. I'll consider voting for a Green for other offices if I agree with what they're saying and I see them doing a visible campaign. That means, for one thing, that they have to show up in Eugene.

I don't think, however, that any leftist candidate will ever have any impact unless they're running as a spoiler in a close race. We should embrace the spoiler tactic, because that is the only power we are ever likely to have. Use it or lose it.

Nader only has to be on the ballot in a few swing states, and he will be, to make Kerry lose. That's what I want. Time to teach the Democrats a lesson.

is disenfranchisment only bad... 01.Sep.2004 17:39

when the republicans are doing it?

"the histrionics about disenfranchisement"

Tell that to the minorities of Florida.

if you really want to "get" kerry 01.Sep.2004 18:10

dont write in nader- just vote for bush!

you few deadenders who plan to write in nader are so irrelevant it hurts. the tens of thousands who have been saved from their own stupidity will hopefully be more than enough to "kerry" oregon. if only you had spent more time gathering signatures and less time getting drunk on your porch while ranting about the corporate duopoly.

thanks fascist 01.Sep.2004 18:17

pro-democracy, anti-democrat

"the tens of thousands who have been saved from their own stupidity"

Yes, it's a good thing you democrats are looking out for us to tell us how good the war in Iraq is, and how great NAFTA is for the economy. Hey, maybe we should just get some concentration camps for those who aren't as smart as you are.

Since I believe in democracy I won't vote for Bush or Kerry. And I'll be making my voice very loud. Both the democrats and republicans deserve to lose the election, and I don't care which one does.

With democrats like these... 01.Sep.2004 18:18


Who needs republicans?

take the democrats 01.Sep.2004 18:26


... please!


drunk on your porch 01.Sep.2004 18:52

George Bender

Actually I usually get drunk inside my apartment. For variety I get stoned. Drugs are the only way to tolerate the stupidity of American politics.

"Will you please admit that the people just don't really care about Ralph or want him as their representative?"

You mean the 18,100 people who signed the Nader petitions, they don't really care about voting for Ralph? And your logic is?

Nader campaign will sue 01.Sep.2004 20:34

Adrienne Wilson, OPB

SALEM, OR 2004-09-01 Independent candidate Ralph Nader has failed to qualify for Oregon's presidential ballot.

State elections officials announced Wednesday that his supporters did not collect enough valid signatures.

The Nader campaign fell short by about 200 signatures.

Oregon Secretary of State Bill Bradbury says the petition sheets submitted were filled with irregularities.

Bill Bradbury: "The most evident problem was the numbering of signature sheets. And the Oregon election law is incredibly clear on the numbering issue and I really was left with no choice but to uphold the law."

Nader spokesman Greg Kafoury says the numbering rules are ridiculously trivial and technical and that his campaign had permission from the Secretary of State's office to alter the numbering on petition sheets.

Kafoury says the Nader campaign will file a lawsuit this week to reverse the Secretary of State's decision not to allow Nader on the ballot.

my logic 02.Sep.2004 09:40

sick of nader

"You mean the 18,100 people who signed the Nader petitions, they don't really care about voting for Ralph? And your logic is? "

The signatures of only 18k people in the entire metro portland area (one of which was mine)? Thats MINISCULE! How many of those signature were like mine - people supporting another choice officially on the ballot if the petition qualified but not supporting Nader at all (thus, 100% of my research shows that those signing the Nader petition didn't really care about voting for Ralph ;))? Also consider that many people just sign petitions without really caring about what their signing (how many seconds does the petitioner spend with each signatory on this or any petitioning campaign).

""the histrionics about disenfranchisement" Tell that to the minorities of Florida. "

What do minorities in Florida care about Nader's petition drive in Oregon? Has anyone's vote been taken away in Oregon because Nader's campaign couldn't get it together to be named on the ballot? No. Can you or any other voter in Oregon still vote for Nader. Yes.

Please just stop it.


I signed the Nader petition... 02.Sep.2004 10:40


...out of principle, but will not vote for him. The Nader petitioner was a lame ass by the way. I don't know where they get these people.

dream 02.Sep.2004 12:24

lucy in the sky

I sort of agree with "sick of nader". I grudgingly agreed to sign the nader petition as a favor to a friend. I do not intend to actually vote for nader. I suppose it theoretically might be alright to have his name on the ballot to prove that people believe in the importance of an alternative candidate enough to make the effort to get his name on the ballot. Actually voting for him is just stupid.
He has a comparatively miniscule following. He is not a political operative, has not served in office, has not led any conspicuously visible social reform campaign besides killing the corvair back in the early 60's. He might be a good consumer activist, who accomplished a lot of good things over the years, but as someone who might conceivably bring the nation together with leadership....yikes!!!!! no way.
The idea of so called leftists who want nader on the ballot just so bush will win and "teach the democrats a lesson", is incredibly stupid. Repubs must be cackling with glee at that one.
I really think that most working class americans don't give a doo-dah about the republican/democrat polarity. They don't care about this our team their team competition nonsense. They just want some certainty that food will be on the table and that someone won't be knocking on their door with a rifle in their hands ready to haul them off for imprisonment or execution.
Society in america is sick. Republicans and Democrats: "want to be masters", and "resigned to be slaves".
We could do so much better if some one individual, or group of individuals effectively working together r-e-e-ally had a dream. That's what an alternative candidate with any realistic chance of national recognition must have. Nader absolutely does not.

dreamer in the sky - Nader not what you think 03.Sep.2004 01:10


The media keep harping on the spoiler meme, mainly to prevent people from learning the overall scope and vision of Nader's life's work:

Try this for starters:

And check this out:

This is where Nader began his foray into the electoral arena, back in 1992, because he found that his citizen groups were having less and less success influencing Congress and the White House to serve the People instead of the moneyed interests. He announced his Concord Principles and has spent the past twelve years laying the groundwork for their ultimate realization.

If you read and understand where Nader is coming from, what he has accomplished and what he would do as President, then you would know that his "miniscule following" consists of precisely all those "working-class" people who want not just food on the table but food that won't kill you, and not just no government or corporate goons busting down their door but also the organized citizen group and community solidarity means and methods and know-how to fight back and re-secure their liberties if and when their living room doors do get knocked down.

Nader's mother once asked him if he loved America, and he said sure. Then his mother said, "Then I hope some day you'll do something to make it more lovable." And that is exactly what he has been doing 16 hours a day, seven days a week for half a century. He is responsible for:

But there's much much more to Nader's agenda -- try everything on these sites:
 http://www.nader.org (including his weekly column at  http://www.nader.org/public_interest.html)

and in these books:

Nader's latest book, "The Good Fight" is available in bookstores now, and is full of exactly the kind of practical populist social vision you are talking about.

As for being able to bring the nation together under his leadership, there is no one in a better position than Nader to do just that. He is the only public figure whose ideas and activism have broad appeal and influence across every political and socio-economic spectrum. He has always worked in coalition on specific issues of common cause with people of every political and ideological persuasion. He worked with Grover Norquist on term limits and Arab-American civil rights. He worked with Phyllis Schlafly to oppose the stagnation and regimentation of school curriculum that standardized testing brings about, and against over-medication and unnecessary medication of children in schools with Ritalin and other poisonous and punitive drugs. He just as vigorously works against those same activists on an array of other issues for which he is well-known for allying with left and liberal activists. As President, Nader would shove ideologies aside and put the day to day well-being of people and communities, including their rights and their freedoms, first and foremost on the nation's social and political agenda. No one else is nearly as well qualified as Nader to do that.

Look past the smokescreen that both the Democrats and the Republicans and their media allies have been blowing thick to obscure the public's vision of what Nader is, and has all his life been, asking them to consider doing for themselves and for the world. He calls it a "solution revolution." He says, "I don't tilt at windmills. I want windmills." Here is his testimony to Congress on the dangers of globalization in 1998:


The Battle in Seattle was in many ways the culmination of decades of Nader's work against corporate neo-colonialism. His organization Public Citizen's Global Trade Watch project has always been the key driving engine of the anti-globalization movement:


Nader has a profound understanding of the political, economic and social state of the world today, and a vision to find ways for people to live more free, more safe, more able to pursue their own brands of happiness in respectful community with one another.

Here is a quick and VERY partial run-down of what Nader has done:
DDT, NTHSA, OSHA (especially for coal miners), EPA, FOIA, anti-globalization, and now third party and independent politics and electoral reform. His method has always been to create the instrumentation for grassroots organization, and help local movements launch and grow and connect with other local movements until they develop into networks of solidarity on common issues that end up having a broader and broader scope and a deeper and deeper foundation in rigorous research and analysis.

His vision for us is that enough common folk simply keep grinding away in droves at the problems and limitations and dangers to our democracy and well-being, and prevail in the end because, as Holly near put it in a song, "We will have peace, we will because we must, we must because we cherish life". Well, here's a link to the song:


In no way am I implying that Holly Near supports the Nader campaign (a necessary disclaimer nowadays). I do think, however, that having studied quite a bit of and about Nader's writing, speeches, activism and history, that that song pretty much sums up what he is all about. He wouldn't write something like that, he's not a poet, and his writing can get dry when it gets very technical or policy-wonkish or legalistic, but the same passion and commitment is evident in it all, and he can be downright funny even in handling serious material, in fact he's said that if the world were a much better place he would prefer to be a comedian than a driver of populist social movements.