Nader, Barr Could Still Tip Some Tight Races

Third-party candidates could play a role in some states
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Nov 1, 2008 10:09 AM CDT
Ralph Nader speaks during a news conference, Friday, October 10, 2008, at the Statehouse in Des Moines, Iowa.    (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
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(Newser) – Third-party candidates haven’t won much attention in this election, but in some hotly contested states their candidacies could still affect the outcome, the Boston Globe reports. Independent Ralph Nader and Libertarian Bob Barr could play a role in Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Missouri, and Ohio, among others, the paper reports—even if they draw votes only from hardcore backers who wouldn’t vote for anyone else.

Nader could swing things in Missouri, where he took 4% in a recent poll that gave John McCain a 2-point lead over Barack Obama. Barr could shake things up in Georgia, where 3% of voters supported him in a recent poll which showed McCain 4 points ahead of Obama. While some say even 1% or 2% could change a race, others note a different Nader effect: that the memory of 2000 actually spurs voters to the polls in the belief that every vote counts.