Americans Elect may not have a presidential candidate or a platform, but the upstart third party continues to grow: It's now assured of appearing on the presidential ballot in 17 states, with 18 more well on the way, reports the AP. Come November, it expects to be in all 50 states. The party says its online primary won't begin for two more months, with the goal of having a candidate picked by late June. "The soil is tilled for this," says chief operating officer Elliot Ackerman.
Many political observers are skeptical, though, about its chances. "To say that we're going to create the vehicle for somebody and anoint 'the somebody' later without any kind of ideological underpinning other than 'we're really kind of disappointed, angry and hurt'—that just doesn't seem feasible," says a former Democratic consultant. That misses the point, says Ackerman: "What we're offering up is a new way to nominate. You could see a Republican and Democrat running together. You could see a Democrat and an independent. The fact of the matter is the way our political system is set up right now, you'll never see that." (Might Olympia Snowe be a party contender?)