If Ralph Nader Really Had Nothing to Do With Corp.'s--How Did He Get the Commercials?

I know it has been a while since the 2000 elections. But something has been bothering me ever since.

Ralph Nader claimed that the two major parties–the Democrats and the Republicans–both are in bed with big corporations. I forget exactly how he phrased it, but he said words to the effect that they both drop to their knees when offered money by them. It was just a question of how fast.

Now, don’t take this as a jab against Mr. Nader. But did you ever see his commercials? Professionally done with paid actors and running in prime time. Even ads for the American Lung Assoc. don’t run in prime time.

If he had nothing to do with corporate money–then how did he pay for those expensive commercials :slight_smile: ?


Donations. He had an 800 number, IIRC.

Ralph Nader’s dirty little secret is how much he depends on donations from trial and personal injury lawyers to run his organizations. It helps to explain his opposition to no-fault auto insurance. You might take a look at the chapter “Ralph Nader is a Big, Fat Idiot” in Andrew Tobias’ My Vast Fortune.

Naturally, as that title suggests, Tobias doesn’t pretend to be a disinterested party.

I guess taking donations from greedy, rapacious CORPORATIONS is bad. Taking donations from greedy, rapacious PARTNERSHIPS is fine.

About half the lawyers of my acquaintance are members of the ACLU. I don’t doubt that a large part of Ralph’s funds have come from lawyers, since many are liberal and have money.

I believe a large proportion of contributions to Ralph’s campaign came by way of donations at his website.

I don’t ever want to hear about Ralph Nader again. It is not that I blame him for running. It is his right and who knew what the result would be and third parties often inject what new ideas ever hit the political arena. But what is unforgiveable is his refusal to admit that, in retrospect, it would have been better for Gore to have won. He is either stupid or unforgiveably stubborn and he is definitely not stupid.

Hari, no offense, but that’s been done to death. See about 50 past threads.

Not really surprising, since there wouldn’t be much of a demand for lawyers if there weren’t any civil rights.

Dare I ask for a cite for this, or is this just some stereotypical right-wing flamebait propaganda?


I don’t have a cite. That was in response to DRS’s post. He said funding by lawyers is Ralph’s “dirty little secret”. I said it’s merely liberals funding their candidate. Where’s the “stereotypical right-wing flamebait propaganda?” It’s just a theory. Don’t get your shorts in a bunch.

FYI: I voted for Ralph the last 2 elections, and I am a former member of the ACLU.

Most lawyers are small business persons rather than large corporations/large partnerships, so even if Nader received significant donations from lawyers (I don’y know if he did or not), that in no way indicates that he was in bed with large corporations.

Ralph Nader:
Total Receipts: $8,433,778

Individual contributions of $200 or less: $5,737,503 = (68.0%)

That seems like a pile o’cash to this humble Canuck… How much does it cost these days to run a competitive Presidential election campaign???

That’s not a lot of money for a U.S. Presidential campaign. According to this website:


the total contributed to the 2000 Presidential campaigns was 528.9 million dollars.

Well, it’s all relative

Ralph Nader:Total Receipts: $8,433,778
Individual contributions of more than $200: $1,401,663
Individual contributions of $200 or less: $5,737,503
Federal funds: $723,308
PAC contributions: $390
Candidate self-financing: $0
Other: $570,914
George W. Bush: Total Receipts: $193,088,650

Individual contributions of more than $200: $81,260,483
Individual contributions of $200 or less: $20,260,290
Federal funds: $67,560,000
PAC contributions: $2,229,056
Candidate self-financing: $0
Other: $21,778,821
Al Gore: Total Receipts: : $132,804,039

Individual contributions of more than $200: $32,291,823
Individual contributions of $200 or less: $13,320,778
Federal funds: $83,016,084
PAC contributions: 0
Candidate self-financing: $0
Other: $4,175,354

IMHO, it’s a site worth rooting around on as all sorts of interesting stuff comes to light; who donates to whom, relationships between donors and legislation, lobbyists…you know, Government of the people, by the people…

It’s the most legitimate source for this kind of info of which I’m aware. From their blurb:

“* NOTE: All numbers are based on Federal Election Commission data released on January 3, 2002. Totals include all committees by these candidates both for the primaries and the general election.*”

Site Awards

The prime time slots might have been expensive, but aren’t the networks required to give equal time?

As for the actors and high production values, I wouldn’t be surprised if much of this were done gratis. The ad industry in particular is filled with frustrated creative types who’d rather not be hawking goods for The Man. Check out Adbusters some time.

IIRC Nader also did a lot of fundraising through his very popular public speaches, at around $20 (suggested contribution?) a head.

No. The FCC’s “equal time” rule dropped a decade or more back, and would not have applied in this instance anyway. The rule applied to news broadcasts and the like, not to purchases of commercial time.