The third party primer

As the race for the White House comes closer and closer to a conclusion, tensions are getting high as to whether it will be John Kerry or George W. Bush who takes the title of President of the United States.

More people run for president than just Democrat or Republican candidates. Unfortunately, you wouldn’t know that because it’s the two big parties with corporate funding that can shell out the big bucks for advertising and TV time on all the networks during all of your favorite TV shows. The third parties just don’t have the resources to buy press like the super parties do.

So, as a service to you, the average college student, I present a brief list of the qualified candidates for President of the United States of America and what they stand for and against.

Michael Badnarik
Libertarian Party of Florida

The Libertarian candidate is for small government and states’ rights. The government has no business in church, business, marriage or education. It should allow individuals to choose how and what they want to eat, drink, believe, learn or medicate.

Walter F. Brown
Socialist Party of Florida

The Socialist candidate believes that the people should control the means of production and distribution through democratically controlled public agencies. He believes that Americans should produce goods and services purely for use, not profit, and that a profit-based capitalistic society contributes to classism, sexism, racism and a loss of freedom.

David Cobb
Green Party of Florida

The Green candidate advocates social justice and equality, such as attacking archaic laws that uphold homophobia, ageism, sexism and racism in this country. Cobb also supports nonviolent solutions to matters of foreign policy . He primarily urges action based on long-term goals and not short-term gain — ecologically, economically and diplomatically.

James Harris
Socialist Workers Party

The Socialist Workers Party’s 2004 candidate also ran in 1996. He is a unionist and garment worker (on leave of absence from Marshall’s Distribution Center) in Atlanta. He believes in taking militant action for black rights and immobilizing against imperialism and wars. He says he is for working-class politics.

Michael A. Peroutka
Constitution Party

Nothing I could say would do any justice to their platform, so I’ll let Peroutka’s Web site say it all:

“The Constitution Party encourages faithful fathers and mothers to train their children to love God and serve others according to their own conscience and without the interference of unconstitutional federal programs.

“This attack against the right of the people to acknowledge God is disgraceful and it is un-American. The Constitution Party is committed to an American understanding of law and government — that rights come from God and that it is the purpose of government to secure and defend them.

“Michael Peroutka and the Constitution Party will fight to defend America against its foreign and domestic enemies in order to return to a Republic of Sovereign States based on Biblical principles.”

Ralph Nader
Reform Party

Ralph Nader believes that both Kerry and Bush place the interests of “corporate paymasters” ahead of the interests of the American people. Nader also advocates reforming the criminal justice system, universal healthcare and a “living minimum wage” of $10 an hour.