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CANDIDATES / RALPH NADER
The Candidates:
• George W. Bush
• John Kerry
• Ralph Nader
• Third Parties
Showdown States:
The Conventions:
• Democratic
• Republican


The Nader Factor

(CNN) -- Ralph Nader is running as independent in his fourth presidential bid but is struggling to get his name on each state's presidential ballot. He lacks the backing of the Green Party but also faces opposition from Democrats and former supporters, who oppose his candidacy and blame him for siphoning off votes from Democrat Al Gore in key states in the 2000 election.

Below is the latest info on Nader's effort.

Update: November 1, 2004

A Hawaii judge will rule whether Nader can be placed on the state's ballot on Monday -- the day before Election Day -- too late for the ballots to include his name. The case was scheduled to be heard Friday, but the judge recused herself, delaying the hearing.

The Ohio Supreme Court declined to overturn a lower court ruling that kept Nader off the state ballot. The Nader campaign appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court, which rejected his appeal without comment on October 26.

Suing to get on the ballot

HAWAII: Nader filed suit October 8, arguing that Hawaii's ballot access laws discriminate against independent candidates and that state elections officials arbitrarily threw out many of his signatures. The case was scheduled to heard on October 29 but the judge recused herself. Another judge was assigned and will hear the case on Monday, too late for Nader to be on the Hawaii ballot. A federal court denied a similar legal challenge on October 13, the same day Nader filed the state lawsuit. Hawaii elections official determined that Nader did not submit the required 3,711 valid signatures of registered voters. Nader's campaign said it submitted 5,700 signatures by the September 3 deadline.

On the ballot

ALABAMA: The Alabama secretary of state announced on September 14 that Nader had submitted enough signatures to be on the ballot. Alabama required 5,000 signatures by September 7.

ALASKA: Nader was certified August 31 as the nominee of the Populist Party -- a "limited political party" -- that exists in Alaska solely for the purpose of putting Nader on the ballot. Nader submitted more than 5,000 signatures by the August 4 deadline. Elections officials certified in late August that he had at least the 2,878 required signatures.

ARKANSAS: The state Supreme Court placed Nader's name on the Arkansas ballot October 1. A state judge ruled September 20 that Nader should not be on the ballot because the Populist Party of Arkansas failed to disclose the candidate's party affiliation on petitions used to get his name on the ballot. Nader appealed the ruling to the state Supreme Court and that court ordered printing of ballots for the general election halted until it can hear oral arguments. Before the state judge knocked Nader off the ballot, state elections officials verified that Nader had enough signatures to earn a spot on the ballot. He had submitted 1,000 signatures in Arkansas on August 2. And, as allowed by state law, his campaign submitted more signatures between August 2 and August 12.

COLORADO: The Colorado secretary of state placed Nader on the ballot as the nominee of the Reform Party.

CONNECTICUT: On August 31, elections officials verified 7,618 valid signatures for Nader -- more than the required 7,500. Nader says he submitted more than 12,000 signatures, but elections officials did not count them all after Nader met the threshold to get on the ballot.

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA: The D.C. Board of Elections put Nader on the ballot on August 30. He filed more than the required 3,567 signatures on the August 17 deadline, and no challenge to his signatures was filed.

DELAWARE: The Delaware commissioner of elections certified Nader on August 31 as a candidate on the Independent Party ballot line. Nader accepted the endorsement of the Independent Party of Delaware on August 15.

FLORIDA: The Florida Supreme Court ruled September 17 that Nader be placed on the ballot. Nader had been on the Florida ballot as the Reform Party nominee, but was knocked off. A lawsuit filed by four Florida voters -- a Democrat, a Republican, an independent and a Reform Party member -- argued that the Reform Party is not a national party and did not nominate Nader at a national nominating convention. Both conditions are requirements for a candidate to be placed on the Florida ballot as a minor party nominee. A state judge agreed, calling the Reform Party "a skeleton of its former self," with almost no money, only a handful of candidates in a few states and no influence. But the state Supreme Court ruled that Florida law "is not sufficiently clear" to bar independent parties from the Florida ballot. Nader initially got on the ballot when state elections officials accepted on August 31 an application from the Florida affiliate of the Reform Party.

IOWA: Nader submitted 3,100 signatures in Iowa on August 12, one day before the deadline. On August 26, a state review board ruled that he had more than the 1,500 valid signatures necessary.

KANSAS: Nader will appear on the ballot as the Reform Party candidate. The Kansas secretary of state certified Nader as the Reform nominee on August 31.

KENTUCKY: Nader submitted 10,300 ballots -- more than twice the number required -- on the September 7 deadline. The secretary of state certified his inclusion September 9.

LOUISIANA: Nader's campaign on September 7 filed the paperwork and paid the $500 fee to be on the Louisiana ballot.

MAINE: The Maine secretary of state placed Nader's name on the ballot September 8 after ruling against a challenge to his signatures. The secretary's ruling was appealed to the Maine Superior Court, which ruled September 28 that Nader could stay on the ballot. Nader submitted 5,700 signatures on August 9 and elections officials determined that more than the required 4,000 signatures were valid.

MARYLAND: The state Supreme Court put Nader on the ballot September 20. State elections officials had found that Nader, running under the banner of the Populist Party, fell 542 signatures short of the 10,000 required to get on the ballot. The state Supreme Court on September 20 ordered elections officials to accept the previously rejected 542 signatures. Nader had submitted about 15,000 signatures by the August 2 deadline.

MICHIGAN: A Michigan appellate court ruled September 3 that Nader be placed on the ballot. He had submitted approximately 5,000 signatures by the July 15 deadline and Republicans separately submitted more than 45,000 signatures (31,776 valid signatures were required). State elections officials deadlocked on whether to accept the GOP signatures, because the petition forms indicated they were paid for by Nader's campaign when in fact state Republicans paid for them. But the appellate court ruled that the signatures were not invalid and that Nader should be on the ballot. Nader tried to gain ballot access through the Michigan Reform Party's ballot line, but because of an intra-party squabble, he did not get the Reform Party ballot line.

MINNESOTA: Nader submitted 4,781 signatures in Minnesota on September 13 and elections officials verified later that day that he had enough signatures to be on the ballot. The state requires 2,000 signatures by September 14.

MISSISSIPPI: Mississippi elections officials certified Nader for the ballot September 7 as the nominee of the Reform Party.

MONTANA: Nader was placed on the Montana ballot on August 19. He had submitted more than the 5,000 required signatures by the July 28 deadline, and submitted 2,900 more on August 14, as is allowed by Montana law. The Reform Party has an automatic ballot line in Montana, but Nader got on the ballot with signatures anyway.

NEBRASKA: Elections officials certified September 10 that Nader had filed more than the required 2,500 valid signatures.

NEVADA: Nader submitted 11,000 signatures on July 8. The state -- which requires 5,000 signatures by July 9 -- has verified enough signatures for Nader to appear on the ballot.

NEW HAMPSHIRE: New Hampshire officials determined on September 8 that Nader had more than the required 3,000 signatures to be on the ballot. Several groups, including the state Democratic Party, filed challenges, but the state Ballot Law Commission ruled against them.

NEW JERSEY: Nader submitted more than 1,400 signatures by the July 26 deadline, exceeding the 800 signatures the Garden State requires to get on the ballot. One challenge to Nader's inclusion was filed, but the state Division of Elections denied it.

NEW MEXICO: Both the New Mexico state Supreme Court and a federal court ordered Nader placed on the New Mexico ballot. A state court had removed him in a lawsuit challenging Nader's appearance on the ballot filed by Democrats. The state Democrats, who sought to overturn a September 9 state Bureau of Elections' decision to put Nader on the ballot, argued that he did not have sufficient signatures because many of his signatures were not from registered voters and others were duplicates. State Democrats also said Nader did not qualify for the ballot as an independent candidate because he appeared on other states' ballots as the Reform Party nominee. State Judge Wendy York found for the Democrats September 17, removing Nader from the ballot. After it was revealed that she had given $1,000 to John Kerry, she recused herself from the case September 20. State Judge Teresa Baca heard the case and rendered the same decision, again removing Nader from the ballot. Nader then appealed the ruling to the state Supreme Court and to the U.S. District Court in Albuquerque. Nader submitted more than 31,000 signatures -- more than double the 14,527 required -- by the September 7 deadline.

NEW YORK: Nader will appear on New York's ballot under both the Peace and Justice Party and the Independence Party ballot lines. New York allows candidates to be nominated by more than one party. Nader submitted 27,000 signatures (15,000 are required) on the August 17 deadline to become the Peace and Justice nominee. The Independence Party nominated him at their party convention. Nader was certified for the ballot September 27.

NORTH DAKOTA: Elections officials certified September 7 that Nader had more than the required 4,000 valid signatures. He had submitted around 5,000 signatures.

RHODE ISLAND: Elections officials determined on September 9 that Nader had submitted more than the required 1,000 signatures to be on the ballot.

SOUTH CAROLINA: Nader will be on the ballot as the nominee of the Independence Party -- the South Carolina affiliate of the Reform Party. He was certified as the nominee September 3. Nader submitted more than the 10,000 required signatures by the July 15 deadline to get on the ballot as an independent candidate, but fewer than 10,000 were found to be valid.

SOUTH DAKOTA: Elections officials certified on August 10 that Nader submitted more than the required 3,346 signatures. Nader filed more than 5,100 signatures August 2, one day before the state's deadline. Nader did not appear on the South Dakota ballot in 2000.

TENNESSEE: Nader submitted more than the 275 required signatures by the August 19 deadline. He was certified for the ballot on August 24.

UTAH: Nader was placed on the ballot September 3. He submitted 1,500 signatures on August 16, more than two weeks before of the September 3 deadline. Utah requires 1,000 valid signatures.

VERMONT: Nader submitted 1,278 signatures on the September 17 deadline. Vermont elections officials verified the same day that he had more than the 1,000 signatures required.

WASHINGTON: Nader submitted roughly 2,000 signatures -- twice the 1,000 required -- by the August 24 deadline. The state verified September 1 that Nader had more than 1,000 valid signatures.

WEST VIRGINIA: Nader was certified for the ballot September 3. He submitted more than 23,000 signatures on July 30, three days before the deadline. More than the required 12,963 signatures were ruled valid.

WISCONSIN: The state Supreme Court put Nader on the ballot September 30. Elections officials determined September 10 that Nader filed enough signatures to earn a spot on the ballot and they certified him. But a state court knocked him off the ballot September 28, finding for state Democrats in lawsuit. The Democrats argued that one of Nader's electors for the 7th Congressional District actually lived in the 8th Congressional District and that Nader couldn't appear on the Wisconsin ballot as an independent when he's listed as the Reform Party nominee in other states. The state Supreme Court ruled unanimously in favor of Nader's appeal.

WYOMING: Elections officials verified more than the required 3,643 required on August 31. Nader had submitted more than 6,500 on the August 23 deadline.

Not on the ballot

ARIZONA A judge on July 2 ordered Nader off the ballot when a review by state Democrats showed his petitions fell short by approximately 550 signatures. Nader filed a lawsuit August 13 challenging the constitutionality of requiring petition gatherers to be qualified to vote in Arizona. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeal rejected Nader's bid to get on the ballot October 15.

CALIFORNIA: Nader submitted 82,923 of the 153,035 required signatures on the August 6 deadline. The Nader campaign says some California Greens want to replace David Cobb, the party's nominee, on the ballot with Nader. A Nader spokesman said Nader would accept the ballot line but is not actively pursuing it. He said the campaign is considering three other ways to get on the ballot, but declined to specify them, fearing Democrats will look for ways to foil the plans.

GEORGIA: Nader failed to file the required 37,153 signatures by the July 13 deadline. He has not made a decision about whether to sue.

IDAHO: Nader did not submit signatures to appear on the ballot as an independent by the August 31 deadline. Instead, he filed a lawsuit arguing that he should be able to submit signatures by the later deadline for third party candidates. On October 20, he dropped his lawsuit.

ILLINOIS: Nader fell short of the 25,000 signatures needed. His campaign submitted more than 32,000 signatures by the June 21 deadline, but state elections officials deemed thousands invalid. Nader lost a federal lawsuit to get on the ballot. He is appealing the federal suit but the U.S. District Court of Appeals declined to hear his appeal. Nader also pursued another lawsuit in state court, but the state Court of Appeals ruled against him on October 22. The state Supreme Court may still hear the case but Nader will not be on the ballot on Election Day.

INDIANA: Nader failed to meet the July 1 deadline, collecting less than half the 29,552 signatures required.

MASSACHUSETTS: The secretary of state announced August 31 that only 8,132 signatures were certified at the local level -- falling below the 10,000 necessary to appear on the ballot.

MISSOURI: Nader submitted 12,893 signatures by the July 26 deadline, but local election officials verified only 9,006 -- 994 short of 10,000 required.

OHIO: On October 22, the Ohio Supreme Court declined to overturn a lower court ruling that rejected Nader's request to force Ohio's secretary of state to place his name on the ballot. On October 22, Nader asked the U.S. Supreme Court to review the decision to keep him off the ballot. The request went to Justice John Paul Stevens, who referred the matter to the full court and the justices denied the request without comment October 26. A U.S. District judge in Ohio rejected a similar Nader request on October 12. Ohio Secretary of State Ken Blackwell ruled September 28 that Nader fell short of the state's 5,000-signature requirement. Nader submitted 14,500 signatures on August 18, but only 3,708 were validated.

OKLAHOMA: Nader did not file the required 37,027 signatures by the July 15 deadline. His campaign has abandoned its efforts to get on the ballot in Oklahoma.

OREGON: The Oregon Supreme Court on September 22 ruled that Nader will not appear on the Oregon presidential ballot. The ruling reversed a September 9 decision by a state judge who placed Nader on the ballot by finding Secretary of State Bill Bradbury had erred in declaring Nader ineligible. Bradbury ruled September 1 that Nader failed to qualify for the ballot, submitting only 15,088 of the 15,306 required signatures. He said some of the petition signature pages were not properly numbered and his office only counted signatures on pages that were numbered properly. Nader appealed the Oregon State Supreme Court's ruling to the U.S. Supreme Court, but that court declined to intervene.

NORTH CAROLINA: Nader did not file the required 100,532 signatures by the July 6 deadline. Nader filed a challenge in federal court to North Carolina's ballot access laws, but a judge ruled against him on September 24. The campaign has decided not to appeal the decision.

PENNSYLVANIA: The Pennsylvania Supreme Court on October 19 upheld a lower court's decision that removed Nader from the state's ballot. Nader appealed the ruling to the U.S. Supreme Court, but the court declined to intervene on October 23. The state Commonwealth Court removed Nader from the state's ballot on October 13, ruling that nearly two-thirds of the 51,273 signatures submitted by the Nader campaign were invalid or forged. Pennsylvania requires 25,697 valid signatures and the ruling left him with only 18,818. The court spent three weeks reviewing every signature submitted and the presiding judge, James G. Colins, wrote in the ruling "that this signature-gathering process was the most deceitful and fraudulent exercise ever perpetrated upon this court."

Nader was on the Pennsylvania ballot due to a September 30 ruling by the state Supreme Court that reversed a lower court ruling that would have barred Nader from the ballot. On August 30, the Commonwealth Court had rejected Nader's bid to be listed as an independent candidate, saying he forfeited that right by accepting the nomination of the national Reform Party.

TEXAS: Nader filed a lawsuit against Texas May 10 after failing to gather enough signatures by its May 10 deadline. Nader's suit claims that May 10 is too early a deadline, that it is unconstitutional to require independent candidates to collect 20,000 more signatures than third party candidates and that it is unconstitutional for the state to expect independents to collect signatures in less time than third parties. A federal district court judge rejected Nader's lawsuit September 1 and the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals denied his appeal on October 6.

VIRGINIA: Nader fell short of the 10,000 required signatures, with the state Elections Board verifying only 7,342 on September 7. The state Elections Board initially refused to count Nader's signatures because they were not organized by congressional district and locality. But after an opinion from the state attorney general's office, the state elections board decided to count the signatures.

Information compiled by Mark Rodeffer of CNN's Political Unit.



SUING:
1. Hawaii

OFF:
1. Arizona
2. California
3. Georgia
4. Idaho
5. Illinois
6. Indiana
7. Massachusetts
8. Missouri
9. Ohio
10. Oklahoma
11. Oregon
12. North Carolina
13. Pennsylvania
14. Texas
15. Virginia

ON:
1. Alabama
2. Alaska
3. Arkansas
4. Colorado
5. Connecticut
6. D.C.
7. Delaware
8. Florida
9. Iowa
10. Kansas
11. Kentucky
12. Louisiana
13. Maine
14. Maryland
15. Michigan
16. Minnesota
17. Mississippi
18. Montana
19. Nebraska
20. Nevada
21. New Hampshire
22. New Jersey
23. New Mexico
24. New York
25. North Dakota
26. Rhode Island
27. South Carolina
28. South Dakota
29. Tennessee
30. Utah
31. Vermont
32. Washington
33. West Virginia
34. Wisconsin
35. Wyoming
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