October 20—The Reform Party in Georgia has bolted the Pat Buchanan camp and gone over to Green candidate Ralph Nader.
Said Georgia Reform vice-chair Jerry Reed: “I’ve always admired Nader personally….He’s always been a top-drawer, honest person. I would have liked to see him run in the Reform Party.”
Buchanan press secretary K.B. Forbes told the Macon Telegraph “the lack of support” from Reed’s organization, which is not recognized by the national party, is “irrelevant and inconsequential.”
The Georgia defection follows Wednesday’s press conference in Texas where three former Reform Party top officials—Paul Truax, who founded the Reform Party with Ross Perot in 1992; Leep Pepper, former state chair; and former Tarrant County chair Sandy Madison—went over to Nader. The trio claim Nader’s goals are closer to those of the original Reform Party than are Buchanan’s.
Meanwhile, 12 members of Ralph Nader’s original Nader Raiders—as his former loyal lieutenants were called—have signed a Dear Ralph letter that beseeches the consumer champion to get out of the race before he ends up electing Republican George W. Bush over Democrat Al Gore. “The attached opinion polls now show you are drawing between three and eight percent of the total vote in nine states—Florida, Michigan, Missouri, New Mexico, Nevada, Ohio, Oregon, Washington, and Wisconsin, a level of support which is equal to or more than the present differences in support for Al Gore and George Bush,” says the letter. “More importantly your candidacy has reduced Al Gore’s support to…42 to 45 percent since most of your likely voters would be in the Gore camp if you were not on the ballot.”