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Third Parties on Right Could Be Problem for Bush
Reuters ^ | 6/21/04 | Rolando Garcia

Posted on 06/21/2004 5:41:56 PM PDT by freedom44

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Moses Murphy was as Republican as they come. The 27-year-old former Marine always voted a straight ticket and his Jeep Cherokee sported three "Bush-Cheney '04" bumper stickers.

But two months ago as the Boardsman, Ohio, resident was surfing the Internet, he came across the Web site for the Constitution Party, a small, conservative group still struggling to be on the ballot in every state.

Off came the Bush paraphernalia and now Murphy's Jeep is plastered with stickers for Michael Peroutka, the Constitution Party's little-known presidential nominee.

Media attention has focused on Ralph Nader as a potential spoiler to presumptive Democratic nominee John Kerry, but President Bush could face a similar threat from third party candidates on the right.

The Constitution and Libertarian parties believe they could siphon away enough disenchanted conservatives to tip a close election.

For Murphy, Bush's proposal to grant amnesty to illegal immigrants living in the United States was the final straw.

"We can't keep letting illegals come in; we need troops on the border," Murphy said in a telephone interview. "(Bush's) views no longer reflect my views, and I need to vote my principles."

The party occupying the White House is typically more prone to disgruntled ideologues bolting for a third party, said Lawrence Jacobs, director of the 2004 Elections Project for the Humphrey Institute at the University of Minnesota.

And hardline conservatives have no shortage of gripes with the president they helped elect. Topping the list is the dramatic increase in federal spending, especially the $500 billion new Medicare entitlement for prescription drugs Bush pushed through Congress, said Paul Weyrich, head of the Free Congress Foundation and a leading conservative activist.

Weyrich said grassroots conservatives "have a real problem with this administration's out of control spending."


But it is unclear whether this grumbling on the right will translate into votes for the Libertarian or Constitution party nominees. In 2000, the Libertarian nominee received only about 385,000 votes or 0.36 percent, and conservative commentator Pat Buchanan won about 450,000 or 0.42 percent. By contrast, Nader, running from the left, took almost 3 million votes or 2.74 percent and possibly swung the election to Bush with a strong Florida showing.

Any defections from Bush's base would be "minuscule" said Stuart Rothenberg, editor of the Rothenberg Political Report, and the policy gripes of Washington political elites do not necessarily resonate among the Republican rank-and-file.

"Spokesman for the conservative movement see it as their job to grumble" when politicians on the right begin to stray, Rothenberg said.

However, even a handful of defections in key states could tip the balance. For Bush to have a hope of winning, Rothenberg said, his support among Republicans cannot dip much below 90 percent.

Unlike Nader, who was on 43 state ballots in 2000 as the Green Party nominee and is struggling to match that this year, the Libertarian nominee is typically on the ballot in all 50 states, Jacobs said.

The Constitution Party was on the presidential ballot in 42 states in 2000.

Libertarians have already proven they can decide the outcome of close elections. In the 2002 South Dakota Senate race, the Republican challenger lost by about 500 votes, with the Libertarian candidate receiving more than 3,000.

That same year, Libertarian candidates in the Wisconsin and Oregon gubernatorial races received 11 and 5 percent respectively, far exceeding the Democrat's margin of victory.

Bush lost both Oregon and Wisconsin by less than a percentage point in 2000, and both will be in play this year.

Swing states like New Hampshire and Nevada may also be fertile ground for Libertarians, Jacobs said.

But the Libertarian and Constitution party platforms could be an obstacle in peeling away conservative votes from Bush.

Both sound familiar conservative themes of slashing government and lowering taxes, but they also advocate the immediate withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq, and the Libertarians are socially liberal, supporting abortion rights and drug legalization. A general rule of thumb, Rothenberg said, is that about half of the voters who support third parties are outsiders who would not vote if their candidate was not running.

But if his candidacy does siphon away enough conservatives from Bush to put Kerry in the White House, Libertarian presidential nominee Michael Badnarik says that is fine with him. There is little difference between the major parties, he said, and playing the spoiler in a presidential election would greatly enhance Libertarians' national profile.

Peroutka, the Constitution nominee, said a Kerry victory could even help the conservative cause by prompting Republicans in Congress, who have approved Bush's spending increases, to oppose similar measures proposed by Kerry.

TOPICS: Culture/Society; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: conservatives; constitutionparty; libertarians; michaelperoutka; peroutka; thirdparty
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To: RockDoc
Their platform is much more in line with the majority of Freepers than the Republican Party.

You are correct. A web survey showed me much closer to the Constitution Party platform.


You will never find me voting for them since the ONLY possible outcome is to guarantee a Democrat victory. I spend my time working for conservative values *within* the GOP.

Sometimes it's frustrating, I know, but if every Freeper worked for pro-conservative movement within the structure of the GOP, we'd already be there!

The Constitution Party -- helping to elect Democrats since 2000

21 posted on 06/21/2004 6:06:50 PM PDT by newberger
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To: SunStar
Since the ONLY thing fringers can ever manage to do,is to get a DEM elected,they are THE ENEMY WITHIN.

The media can salivate all they want to,but when push comes to shove,enough political cut off one's nose, to spite one's facers will probably wake up and not cast a vote which could install a president Kerry,come November.

22 posted on 06/21/2004 6:08:09 PM PDT by nopardons
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To: MindFire

You wouldn't mind having John "Teresa, gimme my money!!!" Kerry as President, would you???

23 posted on 06/21/2004 6:09:11 PM PDT by El Conservador ("No blood for oil!"... Then don't drive, you moron!!!)
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To: unixfox
Aye. And if Rove doesn't think second amendment supporters are a factor, he should take a serious look at 2000's squeaker. We're out here, Karl, and we vote.

24 posted on 06/21/2004 6:10:47 PM PDT by glock rocks (I didn't do it, nobody saw me do it, there's no way you can prove anything.)
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The libertarians have been around for years yet they have rarely been a factor. Why is this year any different.

It is amazing, is it not, the coverage the LP gets when getting 1% would be an amazing victory for them...

OTOH, I predict that Nader will help the Democrats. Kerry won't come anywhere near winning, so the votes he'll lose in the presidential contest are inconsequential. However, those voting for Nader, and many of them wouldn't vote if he wasn't on the ballot, will likely vote for Dem candidates in the House, Senate, and statewide elections...
25 posted on 06/21/2004 6:12:22 PM PDT by swilhelm73
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To: freedom44
Reuters is the most liberal news organization west of Paris. They have joined in the concerted efforts of wealthy liberals to divide the Republican vote before this election.

Liberals have set up and funded fake conservative organizations and websites to use as fronts for disseminating false information (usually studies they commissioned) among Republican voters.

Among these groups are the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR), Numbers-USA, the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS), ProjectUSA and the Coalition for the Future American Worker (CFAW), and the Pioneer Fund.

In addition we have the John Birch Society, the KKK, the Border Patrol groups, the militia organizations etc...,

Their primary wedge issue is racism, just like Buchanan's was. They try to legitimize anti-Hispanic bigotry with transparently shallow arguments that they only oppose "ILLEGAL" immigrants, Afterall, everyone should agree that it's OK to hate someone who is "ILLEGAL". Then they go on to criticize ALL Mexican immigrants for lowering wages, littering, using hospitals, diluting our western culture, etc...

But you know they are just using the word "ILLEGAL" to hide their racism when they won't agree that changing the law to make them legal would cure their objection.

This thread will soon be filled with the usual malcontents whining about the usual phony complaints and vowing never to vote for Bush.

26 posted on 06/21/2004 6:13:29 PM PDT by bayourod (Can the 9/11 Commission connect the dots on Iraq or do they require a 3-D picture?)
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To: lonestar
The way to make the GOP better, i.e. more conservative, is to pressure Bush to act like one and quite defending his bad policies. Too many conservatives are motivated by fear to back Bush and he and his handlers know this and take the conservative base for granted.
27 posted on 06/21/2004 6:13:35 PM PDT by fatidic (fatidic : of or relating to prophecy)
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To: steplock

No...try CINOS,who would rather have a Dem in ALL elected offices,than vote for a GOPer.Political naifs and "purists" don't understand the real world and need to live in reality.Politics is the world of the possible;not some fairy tale dream world,that never was.

28 posted on 06/21/2004 6:15:37 PM PDT by nopardons
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To: MindFire
agreed. I have not voted for GOP since 1992. Bob Dole was an insult and GWB wishy-washy. What's the point? I'll be voting constitution party again unless it's close in my state. even then, maybe if we just let the homos and wackos take over for 4 years, the majority will finally come to their senses. Even Democrats treat African Americans better than true conservatives are treated by Bush and his handlers.
29 posted on 06/21/2004 6:15:48 PM PDT by Piers-the-Ploughman
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To: gcruse

And you're just dying for Kerry to be president...right?

30 posted on 06/21/2004 6:18:37 PM PDT by nopardons
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To: freedom44

It's too late for them to get on the ballot in most states. I don't even think Nader will be on ballot in all states.

31 posted on 06/21/2004 6:19:27 PM PDT by NavySEAL F-16 ("Proud to be a Reagan American")
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To: freedom44
Any defections from Bush's base would be "minuscule" morons
32 posted on 06/21/2004 6:20:00 PM PDT by Tamzee (Noonan on Reagan, "...his leadership changed the world... As president, he was a giant.")
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To: freedom44

It's too late for them to get on the ballot in most states. I don't even think Nader will be on ballot in all states.

33 posted on 06/21/2004 6:20:04 PM PDT by NavySEAL F-16 ("Proud to be a Reagan American")
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To: unixfox
This has been a growing trend for some time now. If the Republican party doesn't stop acting like the Democrats/Socialists they will soon lose it all.


The 3rd parties on the right got FEWER votes in 2000 than in any election since 1992, when Perot got a lot of GOP votes.

Third parties, with live-at-home-with-mom clowns like Michael Bednarik and opposed-to-the-war-on-terror dimwits like Michael Peroutka, are at an absolute low point in American politics.

And these marginal figures attract those who plaster whatever they drive with bumper stickers, as if a bumper sticker ever translated into a vote.

34 posted on 06/21/2004 6:20:29 PM PDT by sinkspur (There's no problem on the inside of a kid that the outside of a dog can't cure.)
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Comment #35 Removed by Moderator

Comment #36 Removed by Moderator

To: freedom44
"We can't keep letting illegals come in; we need troops on the border," Murphy said in a telephone interview. "(Bush's) views no longer reflect my views, and I need to vote my principles."

Attaboy, Murph!!!

37 posted on 06/21/2004 6:23:04 PM PDT by Willie Green (Go Pat Go!!!)
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To: Piers-the-Ploughman
What utter Barbra Striesand!

Why don't you just vote straight Dem,after all, that's all you are doing,whedn you voted for the fringe of the fringe.

38 posted on 06/21/2004 6:26:35 PM PDT by nopardons
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To: El Conservador; sinkspur
i don't know what that means. if you have read any of my posts you'd know i'd never vote for a degenerate abortionist/communist like kerry.

Bush has done some things that i like; such as rescinding clintons signature on the world court.

but he has done many awful things. if you two guys would go do some research on FTAA and UNESCO and then come back here and defend this garbage, i'd love to see it. because then you'd be right in line with kerry/bush. or should i say Keush/Buerry. give me a break. that is like choosing from this; picture this scene in a maggot/fly infested restaurant:

"Hello! i'm your waitress for this evening..would you like moldy apples, or worms and cockroaches for supper? You get to choose! ;-)"

Yikes!!!! :-\

39 posted on 06/21/2004 6:29:36 PM PDT by MindFire
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To: Willie Green

I agree with what he had to say, but is it really worth possibily losing an election over?

40 posted on 06/21/2004 6:34:01 PM PDT by freedom44
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