This is a partial transcript from "Hannity & Colmes", March 5, 2004, that has been edited for clarity.
MONICA CROWLEY, CO-HOST: I'm Monica Crowley, sitting in tonight for Sean Hannity.
Will Ralph Nader mean big trouble for John Kerry? Republicans hope so.
Earlier today Alan spoke with the presidential candidate about being back on the campaign trail.
ALAN COLMES, CO-HOST: I'm a progressive candidate, and I would like to see Bush not get a second term. Why does voting for you help accomplish that?
RALPH NADER, PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Well, because we're going to take the Bush administration apart in ways the Democrats won't, can't because they're too cautious, too indentured, to the same dollars.
And you know, the base now for this candidacy is not going to be among Democrats. We're going to get far fewer votes from the members of the Democratic Party. The party out of power, its members, always come back into the fold, as John Kerry accurately said last week.
It will come from independents. It will come from liberal Republicans. It will come from conservatives who are furious with Bush over deficits, corporate subsidies, the Patriot Act.
COLMES: Do you really think conservatives are going to vote for Ralph Nader?
NADER: I was just giving the reasons why, Alan. There's really a conservative revolt brewing in Republican circles against the corporate Republicans represented by George W. Bush.
They're furious with him, for what they consider as a betrayal. Huge federal deficits, Big Brother Patriot Act (search), corporate subsidies paid for by middle-class taxpayers and most recently in the energy bill and the Medicare (search) drug benefit bill, corporate pornography beamed to children. Nothing's been done about that.
COLMES: The bottom line, though, is the country better off with Bush re-elected or with a Democrat like John Kerry in office? And was the country -- would the country have been better off if Al Gore (search) were president now, as opposed to President Bush?
NADER: Gore did win the election, but it was taken from him.
COLMES: He's not president. He's not president.
The question is not which is better. I mean, Kerry will be better than Bush. The question is how much better? Are we dealing with least- worst here or are we dealing with the better and the best?
And the corporations are pulling the Democrats in their favor with all the money and all the influence they have over politics and government in this country. Who's pulling the other way toward progressive agendas that mean what they say and say what they mean?
COLMES: Is your real goal...
NADER: Universal health care, major overdue justices.
COLMES: Is your real goal -- is your real goal then to pull the Democratic Party to the left? Is that what you're trying to accomplish?
NADER: That's one of many goals. Other goals are to bring new voters in, to bring new energy from the citizens so they participate in presidential elections instead of just being due to spectators, and a whole range of agendas that you can see on our Web site VoteNader.org.
COLMES: Surely, you know that, I mean, in Florida the numbers have been mentioned many times: 97,488 votes that you received, Bush beating Gore by 537. The conventional wisdom being that there would be a different president today.
Next time around, the same thing could happen. Red states are still red; blue states are still blue.
Issues like Supreme Court nominations. We would see a very country, a more progressive country with a Democrat in office, and you could make the difference and help elect a Republican.
NADER: Well, I certainly can make the difference in getting to better politics.
The important thing, Alan, is to push the Democrats into arenas that are of great popularity for authentic reason by the voters. And right now, the Democrats for the last 10 years have become very good about electing very bad Republicans.
They should be land-sliding the Republican Party, given how often it turns our government and policies over to big business against the interests of ordinary Americans.
So we want a higher level of expectation operating here, not a least- worst shift into the pits.
CROWLEY: Run, Ralph, run.
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