Imagine if Al Gore had been able to fill those slots instead. Ricci would have been 6-3 in favor of the black firefighters, instead of 5-4 against — and John Paul Stevens or Ruth Bader Ginsburg (or maybe even Sonia Sotomayor) would have written the majority opinion.
Added by Charles, 7/1. A letter from 2004, with emphasis added:
“An Open Letter to Ralph Nader Voters”
Many of us – former Nader’s Raiders and leaders of his organizations – voted for Ralph Nader in 2000. Many did not.
This November, none of us will vote for Ralph. We believe there is nothing more important than defeating George W. Bush.
Ralph argues that he is creating an independent political voice. In 2000, when he ran as the Green Party candidate, that may have been true.
In 2004, as the candidate of the increasingly reactionary, anti-immigrant Reform Party, and the recipient of financial and political support from right-wing funders and operatives, it is not credible. Unfortunately, Ralph is party to a disingenuous effort to split the progressive vote in key states.
With the major party candidates in a dead heat, Nader is poised to tip the election to Bush – again.
We do not agree with Ralph that there is little difference between the Republicans and the Democrats. We know that the country cannot afford another four years of Republicans controlling the White House, both chambers of Congress, the Supreme Court and the entire federal Judiciary. The price of a protest vote is too high for families who live from paycheck to paycheck, for those concerned about the realities of war, for those who lack decent jobs and access to health care, and for the environment.
While Ralph has pursued politically expedient alliances with the right wing, truly progressive leaders – from peace activists to unions to former Dean supporters – have made substantial progress organizing within the Democratic Party.
United, progressives can build a base for a transformed party funded by small donors, imbued with progressive values and energized by a vision of a democratic majority. Divided, we will give four more years to George W. Bush, Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, and John Ashcroft. The progressive vote can be the key to this election.
We know Ralph Nader better than anyone else. We were inspired to public service by his vision and his integrity. Now we are disappointed and saddened to see him embrace the support of reactionary forces who oppose everything we and Ralph have fought for and whose real agenda is to reelect George Bush.
Join us. Cast your vote for a progressive future and support John Kerry.
Brian Ahlberg – MN PIRG
Judy Appelbaum – Public Citizen’s Congress Watch, Summers 1974, 75
Matt Baker – Organizing Director, NJPIRG 1992-98
Sheila Ballen – Executive Director, Pennsylvania PIRG
Samuel Boykin – Field Director, NJPIRG 2000-03
Michael Berg – Congress Project 1972
Robert Brandon – Director, Public Citizen’s Tax Reform Research Group 1972-77
Mike Calabrese – Former Director, Public Citizen’s Congress Watch 1980
Marc Caplan – Executive Director, CCAG 1974-80
Michael Caudell-Feagan – USPIRG 1985-86; Nat’l Assoc. for Pub Interest Law 1986-91
Nancy Chasen – Lobbyist, Public Citizen’s Congress Watch 1973-75
Sarah K. Chiles – Northeast regional coordinator, Americans against Political Corruption
Elizabeth Collaton – Research Director, Public Citizen’s Congress Watch 1985
Karen Croft – Staff, Center for the Study of Responsive Law1979-80
Gina Collins Cummings – Organizing Director, New Jersey PIRG, 1984 – 1994
Beth DeGrasse – Former Director, PIRG Voter Registration Campaigns
James Dickson – Director of Organizing, CCAG 1976-78
Angela Di Leo – Staff, Florida PIRG 1984 – 86
Kirsten Dunton – Organizing Director and Staff Attorney, State PIRGs 1989-2003
Joe Tom Easley – Center for the Study of Responsive Law, 1969-74
Larry Eason – Director, Training and Media Center, PIRG 2000-2001
Donna Edwards – Public Citizen’s Congress Watch 1990s
David Eppler – Staff Attorney, Public Citizen’s Congress Watch 1989-92
Sherry Ettleson – Staff Attorney, Public Citizen’s Congress Watch
Andrew Feinstein – Attorney, Public Citizen’s Congress Watch 1975-79
Curtis Fisher – Executive Director, New Jersey PIRG, 1996 – 2002
Mark Floegel – USPIRG; Public Citizen’s Congress Watch 1980s; VPIRG Communications Coordinator 2002-2004
Arthur L. Fox – Public Citizen’s Litigation Group 1972-90
Pamela Gilbert – USPIRG 1984-89; Staff Attorney, Public Citizen’s Congress Watch 1989-94
John Gilroy – Nader Difference in ’84 Campaign; Organizer, Citizen Utility Board 1985; ED, VTPIRG 1988-92
David Hamilton – National Field Director, USPIRG 1987-90; Energy Lobbyist, USPIRG 1990-92
Joan Holt – NY PIRG 1979-88
Anita Johnson – Attorney, PIRG; Public Citizen’s Health Research Group 1971-77
Richard Kirsch – Public Citizen 1974-77
Ann Krumblotz – Staff, Center for the Study of Responsive Law 1978-80
Mindy Lubber – Program Director, Massachusetts PIRG
Mark Lynch – Staff Attorney, Public Citizen’s Congress Watch
Tim Massad – Center for the Study of Responsive Law; Wisconsin Citizen Utility Board 1978-81
Neil McBride – Aviation Consumer Action Project 1971-72
Steve McCarthy – Executive Director, Oregon PIRG, 1972-74
Rich McClintock – Executive Director, Colorado PIRG
Chris McGinn – Deputy Director, Public Citizen’s Global Trade Watch 1991-98
David Moulton – Staff Attorney, Congress Watch
Michael Pertschuk – Chair, Federal Trade Commission
Donna F. Parsons – Director, CCAG 1981-87
Peter Petkas – PIRG, Corporate Accountability Research Group 1970
Ronald Plesser – Director, Freedom of Information Clearinghouse 1972-75
Rick Plunkett – MN PIRG 1976-81; CA Campus Organizer 1979-80
Tom Powers – Florida PIRG Organizing Director, FFPIR Nat’l Campus Program Director, PIRG work 1986-1995.
Nancy Rader – CalPIRG 1983-87; Public Citizen 1988-90
Miles Rapoport – Executive Director CCAG 1979-84
Neal Ritchie – ED, MN PIRG
Marty Rogol – General Counsel, CCAG 1971-73; Director, Nat’l PIRG 1974-78
Adam Ruben –Field Director, USPIRG 1999-2002
Leslie Samuelrich – PIRG 1985-91 – Organizer, ConnPIRG; Director, National Student Campaign Against Hunger and Homelessness
Samantha Sanchez – Attorney, Public Citizen’s Tax Reform Research Group 1973-75
Kerry Schumann – Director, Wisconsin PIRG
Gary Sellers – OSHA Project Center for the Study of Responsive Law 1969
Megan Seibel – Executive Director Colorado PIRG
Bob Shireman – Chairman, CalPIRG 1981-83; Legislative Advocate 1984-86
Lucinda Sikes – CalPIRG 1983-86; USPIRG 1989-92; Public Citizen’s Litigation Group 1993-89
Daniel Silverman – Former Nat’l Field Director, USPIRG; Former Vice-Chair, Board of CalPIRG
David Stern – Executive Director, Nat’l Assoc. for Public Interest Law
Gene Stilp – Center for the Study of Responsive Law 1980-81
Rob Stuart – Program Director, NJ PIRG, 1984 – 91; ED, VT PIRG 1991 – 93
Tom Subak – State Campaign Director, CalPIRG 1995-98
Andrea Sullivan – Organizing Director, NJPIRG, 1983 – 84
Thomas D. Sutton – ETS Study Group 1970s; Public Citizen’s Congress Watch 1979-81
Michael Totten – Critical Mass Energy Project 1982-83
James Turner – Center for the Study of Responsive Law 1968-72
Michael Waldman – Attorney Lobbyist, Public Citizen’s Congress Watch
Ken Ward – ED, RI PIRG 1981-82; ED, NJ PIRG 1983-96
Bill Wasserman – Organizer, Cal PIRG 1981-86; Organizer, Public Citizen’s Congress Watch 1986-89
Kathleen Welch – Executive Director, Nat’l Association of Public Interest Law
Harrison Wellford – Food Safety Project, Center for the Study of Responsive Law 1969
David Wood – General Counsel, Public Interest Research Groups
Frances A. Zwenig – Attorney-Advocate, Public Citizen’s Congress Watch