To: All New Mexicans
From: Progressives for Kerry
Re: Nader petition drive in New Mexico
Date: Friday, August 20, 2004

We are writing to you, all New Mexicans who share our progressive ideals, urging you to reject the petition to put Ralph Nader on the ballot as an Independent candidate for president.

In the past several decades, Ralph Nader has been a determined advocate for consumers and a pioneer for progressive causes. Unfortunately, his current presidential campaign has done little to advance progressive policies and has instead been hijacked by ardent Republicans in an effort to re-elect George W. Bush. Naderís campaign has become a critical component of the radical Republican rightís efforts to circumvent the electoral process and keep Bush in office. In order to protect and advance progressive causes, and to ensure that our electoral system is not manipulated, there are some facts that all voters should know about Naderís candidacy.

Naderís campaign hired an out-of-state firm, JSM, which has deceptively pitched for signatures, failing to inform New Mexicans about their true purpose. The firm also has deep ties to Republicans and right-wing causes and is being investigated for violating the law. Certainly, if a candidate abides by the rules, he or she should be able to appear on the ballot. However, some of the Nader campaignís tactics in New Mexico and in other states across the country bring its legitimacy into question.

Second, Republicans understand that George W. Bush has no accomplishments to tout and no vision for the future. Thus, to succeed, they must continue to defame John Kerry, attacking his lifetime of service to country, to divide Democrats and progressives alike with wedge issues, and now to leverage Naderís candidacy to peel off enough independent and Green votes to thwart a Kerry presidency.

John Kerry has been a champion for progressive causes. He has an unparalleled record on protecting the environment, scoring a 96% approval rating from the League of Conservation Voters. Kerry understands how Americaís middle class is getting squeezed Ė working harder, making less, and paying more for health care and prescription drugs, child care, and college tuition. Kerry knows that America can do better and he will take on the big HMOs and pharmaceutical companies to stem the rising costs of health care, and rein in corporate misconduct. He has a comprehensive energy policy that will end Americaís dependence on Middle East oil. Finally, he will continue to fight to protect our freedoms, including a womanís right to choose.

Attached are more facts about the Nader campaignís petition drive -- facts that should give all New Mexicans pause before they support an effort to spoil our hopes of ending the Bush presidency and winning America back from the far right and big corporate interests. We urge you not to sign any Nader petitions.

Sincerely,

FRED HARRIS
Former U.S. Senator

ERIC GRIEGO
City Councilor, Albuquerque

MARTIN HEINRICH
City Councilor, Albuquerque

DEBBIE OíMALLEY
City Councilor, Albuquerque

JOE MAESTAS
City Councilor, Espanola

MILES NELSON
Fmr. Candidate, Democratic Nomination, New Mexicoís 1st Congressional District

STEPHEN CAPRA
Wilderness Activist

MOISES GONZALES
Land Grant Activist

GIOVANNA ROSSI
Advocate for Choice

LINDA SIEGLE
Equal Rights Activist

MAGGIE TOULOUSE
Environmental Activist

DEDE FELDMAN
New Mexico State Senator

CISCO MCSORELY
New Mexico State Senator

SHANNON ROBINSON
New Mexico State Senator

JERRY ORTIZ Y PINO
Candidate, New Mexico State Senate

JOHN GRUBESIC
Candidate, New Mexico State Senate

DANICE PICRAUX
New Mexico State Representative, Majority Leader

MIMI STEWART
New Mexico State Representative

GAIL C. BEAM
New Mexico State Representative

MIGUEL GARCIA
New Mexico State Representative

MAX COLL
Fmr. New Mexico State Representative
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