Ralph Nader, the consumer advocate mounting an independent bid for president, is trying to capitalize on liberal dismay with Barack Obama's stand on anti-terror wiretaps to peel supporters away.
The presumptive Democratic nominee offered support, though somewhat qualified, to the bill passed by the House last week. Though he opposes immunity for telephone companies that took part in President Bush's warrantless wiretapping, Obama says he will support the bill when it comes to the Senate on Wednesday if the provision is not deleted.
Nader's campaign, in an email to supporters, said today that the issue is the latest proof that Obama is not that progressive.
"From the beginning, we saw through Obama's "Change You Can Believe" mantra," the email says. "Obama is just another corporate candidate. At times, he might sound like a progressive. But he's not.
"That's why we're here," the Nader missive continues. "We're here to give the American people a choice in November. You can support the corporate candidates -- Obama and McCain. Or you can shift the power from the corporate candidates and the corporations to the people. And support Nader/Gonzalez. Increasingly, progressives and liberal Democrats are seeing the light and breaking away. What's your breaking point?"
About Political Intelligence
Glen Johnson is Politics Editor at boston.com and lead blogger for "Political Intelligence." He moved to Massachusetts in the fourth grade, and has covered local, state, and national politics for over 25 years. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @globeglen.