Reuters is reporting that the Florida election commission has put Ralph Nader on the ballot as the candidate of the Reform Party in that state despite a court order not to. A Florida judge had ruled that the Reform Party was "a skeleton of its former self" and was no longer a party - at least not the party that gain standing under the leadership of Ross Perot. An article in the Tallahassee Democrat (I wouldn't make any assumptions about Southern papers' editorial policy based on a name like this) says the Judge ruled that way because of the major changes in the Reform party since the last election. The Florida Dept. of State put the Reform Party on the ballot anyway saying that Hurricane Ivan prevents them from waiting for the appeals process to play out.
I don't know what the law is in this kind of case but I agree with the Judge on the substance. The Reform Party under Ralph Nader is radically different from the Reform Party of Ross Perot. Indeed, this party is little more than an institutionalization of protest votes. Under Ross Perot, in 1992 and 1996 they ran as centrists. In 2000, under Pat Buchanan, they ran on the far right. Now in 2004, Ralph Nader is running the party on the far left. For this party to claim privileged status because past success of Ross Perot (or even Buchanan) is to deny that the party has kept nothing but its name from one election to the next.
Tuesday, September 14, 2004
Posted by Raised By Republicans at 8:29 AM