Amidst all the coverage of the Republican and Democratic Party
candidates, it’s easy to forget that there are many other parties
on the ballot, but the Libertarian, Green, Constitution, Peace and
Freedom, and Reform parties will all have candidates on the Nov. 2
Libertarian candidate Michael Badnarik is on the ballot in 48
states. He believes in complete social and economic freedom,
finding that most policy issues can be solved in the marketplace
through the principles of supply and demand.
Badnarik thinks the war in Iraq is a “failure” and wants to get
the troops out of Iraq “as quickly as can safely be accomplished,”
according to his official campaign Web site.
His campaign Web site lists reasons why people on either side of
the abortion issue should vote for him-he will not allow health
insurance or tax funds to pay for abortions, and he will veto any
anti-abortion legislation and not allow government control over
Badnarik thinks that the federal government is one of the
largest environmental polluters, according to his media coordinator
Tom Knapp. Knapp said that the environment should be taken care of
through ownership of the environment and feels that when private
companies and individuals own land, they will take care of the
Knapp said that Badnarik believes in the “defederalization” of
education, meaning that the federal government should have “no role
in education.” According to Knapp, this would eliminate federal
grants for students, but with the severe lessening of taxes that
Badnarik would be pushing for, people could afford to pay for the
money that they aren’t getting in grants with their personal
Green Party candidate David Cobb will be on the ballot in 26
states. Cobb’s campaign Web site states that the “Green Party is
the electoral arm of the movement for social justice, nonviolence,
ecological wisdom, and grassroots democracy.”
Cobb finds the Iraq war to be “unjust, illegal and immoral” and
motivated by profit. He wants to withdraw the U.S. military from
Iraq, according to the Web site.
He supports “full reproductive freedom for women and programs to
address the issue of violence against women and children, including
domestic violence, rape, incest and sexual harassment,” according
to his Web site.
Cobb’s environmental position is about working for a sustainable
economy that is focused on local needs instead of corporate profit
because “healthy ecosystems are essential to life as we know it,”
according to his Web site. Green Party Media Coordinator Blair
Bobier said that Cobb believes that the U.S. has a “bloated
military budget” and that if a fraction of that budget were put
into education all citizens could go to college for free.
Constitution Party candidate Michael Peroutka will be on the
ballot in 38 states, but could be on the ballot in up to 41 states
by the election. Peroutka stands for upholding the laws outlined in
the constitution “and to restore American jurisprudence to its
original Biblical common-law foundations,” according to the
Constitution Party Web site.
He wishes to immediately withdraw all troops from Iraq “in a way
that would provide safety of those Iraqis who worked with us during
this illegal, wrong-headed war,” according to his Web site.
Peroutka believes that America will be abortion free by January
2005 and that women should not be in the military, according to his
campaign Web site.
When it comes to education, Peroutka and the Constitution Party
believe that the Department of Education should be disbanded since
“the federal government has no business directing the education of
Peroutka has no current stance on the environment.
Peace and Freedom Party candidate Leonard Peltier is only on the
ballot in California. The Peace and Freedom Party supports
socialist public policies, protection of the environment, and
representation for labor and underrepresented groups.
Peltier is a Lakota Native-American prisoner serving two life
sentences after being convicted of the murder of two FBI agents in
1977. Peltier supports all Peace and Freedom policies, according to
Peace and Freedom Party representative Marsha Feinland.
Feinland said “a total redistribution of wealth”
will allow the funding of the issues that they find important.
Fienland says that Peace and Freedom plans on taxing the rich and
major corporations, as well as draining the military budget as a
means of funding social change.
Fienland said they also want to immediately pull all U.S. troops
out of all the countries that they occupy, not just Iraq.
The Peace and Freedom Party stands for keeping abortion safe and
Fienland said the party wants to support sustainable
environmental policies, and provide free education for all, from
kindergarten through college.
The Reform party candidate Ralph Nader is on the ballot in 33
states and is a write-in option in California.
Out of the 21 states classified as swing states, Nader is on the
ballot in 14 of them and has write-in status in one. He is
currently fighting in court to get on the ballot or to be a
write-in in the other six swing states.
Nader supports the 11-point agenda of the National Organization
of Women, including safe and legal abortions as well as easy access
to birth control, according to his campaign Web site.
Nader supports the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq as well
as the corporations that are benefiting form the occupation of
Iraq, but wants to continue sending humanitarian aid.
Nader believes that protecting the environment “must be
weaved through our governance” because environmental
sustainability is important for people as well as the economy. He
also believes that polluting the environment costs more long-term
than it saves in the short term.
Nader believes that state and local government should be
primarily responsible for education and that the federal government
should make sure that the states are providing equal access to
quality education. He is against the use of standardized tests to
evaluate schools, like the ones administered through the “No
Child Left Behind” program.