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Ralph Nader > Special Features > Third Parties Are Not Spoilers

Open Letter to the Wall Street Journal By Ralph Nader

How unbecoming it is for the self-styled freedom-loving Wall Street Journal (“Ron Paul Nader?” Dec. 21) to use the politically bigoted word “spoiler” to describe a hypothetical Ron Paul-Libertarian party presidential run.

Why is a third-party candidate called a “spoiler” when the nominees of the Republican and Democratic parties, that have given us a spoiled political system (corrupted by the highest bidder) are never referred to in such a pejorative way? These two decaying parties do not own the voters in this country, though they act that way through their many state laws obstructing outside competition.

Since all candidates are supposed to have the equal right to run for election, then they are either all spoilers of one another in seeking votes or none of them deserve to be called “spoilers.” Candidates from smaller parties are not second-class citizens. After all, either of the major party candidates “takes away” far more votes from the other than any third party candidate does.