Okay, as an instance of masochistic reminiscence, I decided to look up some of the things Michael Moore had said in support of the Nader campaign in 2000. This was basically a half-hour on the web, including pasting here in the blog, so it is not an exhaustive search.
INTERVIEWER: What do you say to the question that's on a lot of people's minds, is a vote for Nader a vote for Bush?
MICHAEL MOORE: Number one, Bush is not going to win. I truly believe that, because the people of this country are not that stupid. He's behind 52 to 38 (percent) right now and every week he goes lower and lower. He's going to continue to sink like a stone.
(On 10/31/00, just a few days before the election): "According to your people, all Ralph or I have to do is wave a magic wand and the Nader voters will "come back to Gore." Look, Al, you have screwed up -- big time. ... I will not feel one iota of guilt should you screw up and lose on Tuesday. The blame I do share is that I voted for you and Bill in 1992."
(On the day before the election): "I completely understand that if you live in a swing state and you feel your conscience telling you that you have to vote for Gore to stop Bush, then do what you need to do. It's not how I would vote, but I understand and appreciate what you are going through."
Contrast these to Moore's later account reported in Salon: "Moore was one of Nader's more celebrated campaigners in 2000, but when "things at Nader Central went crazy," as Moore wrote in his book "Stupid White Men," and it was decided to target swing states where Gore might win or lose by a razor-thin margin, Moore got off the bandwagon... In the final days of the race, Moore writes in his book, he wisely advised the Nader campaign to cut a deal with Gore, throwing him its support in return for major progressive concessions in a Gore administration. A Nader campaign official told the filmmaker that the party could not abandon its goal of getting 5 percent of the vote, which would trigger federal matching funds. But the day after the election, Moore pointed out, 'that's all you'll have -- five percent of the vote, and zero percent of the power.'"
If it's truly important to have Democrats in Washington, then voters will send more Dems to Congress in this election thanks to Nader. That's because a huge number of Nader voters would not be voting at all if Nader were not on the ballot, and after they vote for Nader, they are much more likely to vote for Democrats rather than Republicans in the Congressional races. Nader could wind up being the best thing that happened to the Democrat party in this election season.
INTERVIEWER: I know I've talked to people, especially young women, who want to vote Nader but are instead voting for Gore just because of the abortion issue.
MICHAEL MOORE: [...] George W. Bush is not going to appoint justices who would overturn Roe vs. Wade. He hasn't done it in Texas, and that's the only track record we have to look at. He's appointed moderate justices who have upheld Texas abortion laws. He's not a right-wing ideologue, he's a politician, and he'll do whatever he has to do to get elected.
Ralph already has between 7% and 10% in the polls - before he's done any serious campaigning. He's gone from 3% to 8% in my home state of Michigan. These are amazing numbers and the pundits and lobbyists and Republicrats are running scared.. Hey, you like to watch scared Republicrats running? Tell a pollster you're voting for Ralph
Democrats should be on their knees thanking Ralph for running. Rather than taking votes from Gore, Ralph's going to be the one responsible for turning the House back over to the Democrats.