Libertarian's Run May Raise Barr for McCain

Possible candidate could benefit from Mac's ties to Bush
By Wesley Oliver,  Newser Staff
Posted May 24, 2008 4:57 PM CDT
Ron Paul's bid for the Republican presidential nomination has given "libertarian" ideas more credibility.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – Many Americans don't know Bob Barr, but they may become familiar with him as John McCain’s Ralph Nader in the 2008 election, the Economist reports. The former GOP lawmaker is seeking the Libertarian Party’s presidential nomination, and his viability shows that McCain still has work to do to win over Republican voters.

Barr insists he would siphon more votes from Barack Obama than McCain, although McCain has alienated the GOP’s anti-government wing with stands on immigration, global warming, and taxation. And as McCain courts conservatives, he risks tying himself to President Bush—an alliance that could help Barr, who wants to crush the Justice Department and defer to states on gay marriage.