Petitions with more than 50,000 signatures supporting Ralph Nader for president have arrived at the Michigan Secretary of State's office. State employees will now begin the process of verifying those signatures, something which has been a problem for Nader in other states.
Democrats, however, have a problem with the manner in which those signatures were acquired. Executive Chair of the Michigan Democratic Party, Mark Brewer, says Nader would gained less than seven thousand signatures on his own, well short of the 30,000 requirement, but Nader has been the benefactor of a nationwide effort by Republicans out hitting the pavement getting signatures for the Independent candidate.
Republicans say they are helping Nader because Democrats are working so hard to keep him off the ballots in several states. Dems say the GOP only wants Nader on the November tickets because he would take votes away from Kerry, much like he was criticized for doing to Al Gore in 2000.
Republicans say Democrats weren't crying in 1992, though, when Ross Perot was thought to have cost Herbert Walker Bush his second term against Bill Clinton. Brewer says this situation is totally different because Democrats were not out on the streets in 92 getting signatures to put Perot on the ballots.
Should there be a problem with the signatures, or if Nader rejects the petition nomination by 4 p.m. on Monday, his only other opportunity to make the November ballot would be on the Reform Party ticket. That party, however, has two different men claiming to be the state party chairman. and they do not currently agree on Nader has the Reform party choice for president.
In 2000 that same problem resulted in the party not having a candidate on the November ballot.