In recent weeks, [two] Oregon conservative groups deployed their phone banks to contact Republican voters, urging them to attend a Nader rally in Portland on Saturday, where the candidate's organizers sought to gather enough signatures to place him on the ballot...Not that this is at all surprising. In the same way that every cockroach you see in daylight gives one reason to suspect there are a thousand others teeming somewhere nearby out of view, this does make me wonder what kind of support Nader's getting-on-the-ballot efforts are receiving from conservatives smart enough to keep their mouths shut about it.***
As Russ Walker of Citizens for a Sound Economy explained, "We disagree with Ralph Nader's politics, but we'd love to see him make the ballot." Walker even posted a "phone script" on his group's Web site that offered activists talking points to convince their fellow conservatives to sign Nader petitions.
Mike White, director of the Oregon Family Council, which focuses on social issues such as abortion and gay rights, was equally candid: "We aren't bashful about [aiding Nader]. We are a conservative, pro-family organization, and Bush is our guy on virtually every issue."
But, anyway, what actually interests me is that I'm waiting for Nader or some-flack-thereof to provide some quote that reconciles this help with his repeated assertion that his candidacy will hurt the Bush campaign more than he hurts the Kerry campaign (previous JFW posts here and here). Will he actually be so disingenuous as to claim that the various Bush supporters who are helping him are all suckers who are actually contributing to their own doom?
"Bwah-hah-hah," he could perhaps cackle sinisterly at a rally, rubbing his hands together, "Those conservatives are walking right into my trap." Maybe even thunder and lightning could start up in the background, just like it does for The Count on Sesame Street after he finishes counting to five.
* Not that I care about any indications based on national poll numbers for this campaign. National poll numbers mean nothing in this election. If it stays close, whether the popular and electoral vote winner will coincide is virtually a coin-flip.
** Not that I'm a big fan of Joe Conason, despite his being on My Political Side.
*** Not that I am against Nader being on ballots. I think ballot access should be easier, generally. We do make claim to be a democracy, after all, even if we don't live up to the term already in all kinds of ways. The point is that people shouldn't vote for Nader, not that they shouldn't have the opportunity to do so if they are intellectually-muddled-enough or whatever to want to.