Roemer to launch independent bid for President

posted at 2:10 pm on February 22, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

We soon won’t have Buddy Roemer to kick around in the GOP any longer — if we ever did.  Today, Roemer will announce his withdrawal as a candidate for the Republican nomination for President, and instead campaign for the American Elect party.  If you haven’t heard of the American Elect Party, well …

Frustrated and largely ignored, Buddy Roemer is ending his bid for the Republican nomination and will instead seek the presidency on a third-party ticket.

The former Louisiana governor will make his plans official Thursday at a news conference in Santa Monica, within hours of another Republican debate that he’s been excluded from.

It’s that fact that is driving his decision. The party and the major television networks have “turned their backs on the democratic process” by excluding him, even though he’s a former governor and congressman, he said in a statement.

Roemer has been waging a campaign based in part on ending the influence of special interests in American politics. He capped donations to his campaign at just $100, and raised about $340,000 from individual donors.

He says he will now run for the nomination of Americans Elect, an independent group seeking ballot access in all 50 states that plans to hold an Internet primary to choose a bipartisan ticket.

Roemer will also seek the nomination of the Reform Party, the legacy of H. Ross Perot’s largely self-funded independent runs for President in 1992 and 1996.  It hit its high-water mark in Minnesota’s 1998 gubernatorial election when Jesse Ventura narrowly won a three-way race.  Unfortunately for the Reform Party, Ventura was singularly uninterested in both reform and governing.  His single term ended in embarrassment as Republicans and Democrats crafted budgets without him after Ventura spent a season while Governor as an announcer for the XFL football league.  In 2000, the party nominated Pat Buchanan as its presidential nominee, who had no impact on the race at all.  By 2004, the Reform Party ended up endorsing Ralph Nader on the Green ticket, and in 2008 nominated that household name Ted Weill to lead their ticket. Thanks to a dispute over control of the party, Weill only appeared on the ballot in his home state of Mississippi … and got only 470 votes.

That is the unfortunate track record of the most significant third party in modern American electoral history.

Independent bids usually have almost no impact on presidential elections, unless the candidate has the money and the inclination to spend millions of his own money or can find substantial funding elsewhere.  Perot is an example of the former in the 1992 election; he changed the outcome of the race, but never won a single electoral vote for himself.  Nader is an example of the latter, but even that might not have been true in 2000 had it not been for an extraordinarily close race in Florida.  He only took 2.7% of the national popular vote, as opposed to Perot’s 19% in 1992.

Roemer’s GOP bid has always been a puzzlement.  Roemer has never won office as a Republican; he switched parties during his term as Governor in Louisiana and ended up third in the open primary when he ran for re-election.  Until this election, Roemer hasn’t been an organizing or philosophical voice in the GOP, either.  He’s a charming candidate to be sure and has much to contribute on ideas for reform if he’s serious, but the move to court the American Elect and Reform Parties strongly suggest that he’s less serious about those efforts and more interested in making himself the point.  Nevertheless, it’s impossible not to like Roemer and cheer him on a bit, even if you can’t quite take him seriously.


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Roemer who?

nobar on February 22, 2012 at 2:12 PM

Who?

Lost in Jersey on February 22, 2012 at 2:14 PM

Excuse me—-Who?

dirtseller on February 22, 2012 at 2:14 PM

Whose buddy?

Archivarix on February 22, 2012 at 2:15 PM

Im I suppose to know who this guy is? This is the first time I think I have seen his name. Must be a dandy threat to others running?
L

letget on February 22, 2012 at 2:15 PM

Eh. I think he wants to be that “disaffected” Republican the media loves or something.

changer1701 on February 22, 2012 at 2:16 PM

Every time I flip by MSDNC I see this creep.

Roymunson on February 22, 2012 at 2:16 PM

Don’t let the door hit you in the *ss on your way out, Buddy.

I and most other people in Louisiana who remember the Roemer years thought that his candidacy was a joke when it was first floated. Everyone but Buddy is still treating it as one, though.

teke184 on February 22, 2012 at 2:16 PM

letget s/b Am not Im
L

letget on February 22, 2012 at 2:16 PM

Roem if you want to……Roem around the world….

search4truth on February 22, 2012 at 2:17 PM

Eh. I think he wants to be that “disaffected” Republican the media loves or something.

changer1701 on February 22, 2012 at 2:16 PM

“Republican” would be a stretch for him, as he’s never won office as one.

His big wins were as a Dem, then he switched parties during the middle of his one term as Governor.

teke184 on February 22, 2012 at 2:18 PM

Yawn

Bitter Clinger on February 22, 2012 at 2:18 PM

The only candidate less relevant than Huntsman.

Doomberg on February 22, 2012 at 2:20 PM

Hmmmmm…..Buddy would be a good name for a dog.

Deafdog on February 22, 2012 at 2:21 PM

He better Roehm somewhere else! He ain’t no Buddy of mine!

Creston on February 22, 2012 at 2:21 PM

Nevertheless, it’s impossible not to like Roemer and cheer him on a bit, even if you can’t quite take him seriously.

I never was a fan of Shirley.

Steve Eggleston on February 22, 2012 at 2:21 PM

Sorry buddy.

Flange on February 22, 2012 at 2:21 PM

Buddy ”Republicans are homophobes” Roemer … a whiner, good riddance.

Sams88 on February 22, 2012 at 2:22 PM

That is the unfortunate track record of the most significant third party in modern American electoral history.

Arguably the Republican Party was a third party in the 1850s and 1860s, the Whig Party having been reduced to a shell of it’s former self.

cabbie25 on February 22, 2012 at 2:22 PM

American Elect may be a force to be reckoned with this year. They are highly organized, and have been working hard to get on the ballot in all States in preparation for the ‘right candidate’ to show their face.

HopeHeFails on February 22, 2012 at 2:24 PM

Buddy Roemer will probably get more posts on this thread than votes in a presidential election. Roemer/Huntsman 2012? Saturday Night Live anyone?

NOMOBO on February 22, 2012 at 2:25 PM

Dire will definitely be torn. /

Kataklysmic on February 22, 2012 at 2:26 PM

Roemer has never won office as a Republican; he switched parties during his term as Governor in Louisiana and ended up third in the open primary when he ran for re-election.

This actually leaves out some important details. He actually finished third behind a someone twice indicted on federal corruption charges (Edwin Edwards) and a former Klansman (David Duke). He was less popular than either one.

AngusMc on February 22, 2012 at 2:27 PM

Zzzzzzzzzzzzzz…….

NeoKong on February 22, 2012 at 2:27 PM

So… just to be clear, he won’t be in the debates tonight now?

Red Cloud on February 22, 2012 at 2:28 PM

Obviously, he is not really running for president, so, which candidate is Roemer trying to suck votes away from, and why?

Pork-Chop on February 22, 2012 at 2:28 PM

American Elect may be a force to be reckoned with this year. They are highly organized, and have been working hard to get on the ballot in all States in preparation for the ‘right candidate’ to show their face.

HopeHeFails on February 22, 2012 at 2:24 PM

Highly organized? So what? So are the Paulbots.

Red Cloud on February 22, 2012 at 2:29 PM

Gilligan is running for president?

rbj on February 22, 2012 at 2:30 PM

“Jazz Shaw hardest hit?”

How about atheists hardest hit?

Eph on February 22, 2012 at 2:30 PM

I wanted y’all to know that, well, I’ve decided to give up my bid for the GOP nomination.

I know that it’s shocking, but it’s what I have to do.

Thanks for all of your support.

Sincerely,
OhEssYouCowboys.

OhEssYouCowboys on February 22, 2012 at 2:31 PM

I thought Buddy Roamer was Clinton’s dog when he got loose.

Rixon on February 22, 2012 at 2:31 PM

Gilligan is running for president?

rbj on February 22, 2012 at 2:30 PM

Gilligan IS president… of Iran.

Actually, it’s Maynard G. Krebs.

Rixon on February 22, 2012 at 2:32 PM

American Elect may be a force to be reckoned with this year. They are highly organized, and have been working hard to get on the ballot in all States in preparation for the ‘right candidate’ to show their face.

HopeHeFails on February 22, 2012 at 2:24 PM

Never heard of them until now. So much for their being a “force”.

Bitter Clinger on February 22, 2012 at 2:35 PM

Who?

Decoski on February 22, 2012 at 2:37 PM

$340,000 he has raised…I have got to get into this “running for President” gig…

right2bright on February 22, 2012 at 2:38 PM

Ex Louisiana Governor! I thought they were all in jail.

chicken thief on February 22, 2012 at 2:39 PM

This actually leaves out some important details. He actually finished third behind a someone twice indicted on federal corruption charges (Edwin Edwards) and a former Klansman (David Duke). He was less popular than either one.

AngusMc on February 22, 2012 at 2:27 PM

True. At least part of it is that Roemer is an arrogant SOB who didn’t know how government worked and shot himself in the foot several times.

I know a lot of long-term state employees and they STILL hold a grudge nearly 25 years later over some of his stunts, such as screwing with mailing everyone’s paychecks to the point where he moved an entire pay period into the next fiscal year.

teke184 on February 22, 2012 at 2:39 PM

Is Buddy still drunk from yesterdays Marti Gras celebrations?

meci on February 22, 2012 at 2:40 PM

Ex Louisiana Governor! I thought they were all in jail.

chicken thief on February 22, 2012 at 2:39 PM

I only wish Blanco were in jail. Her pissing match with Ray Nagin before Katrina was probably a huge reason so many people died.

teke184 on February 22, 2012 at 2:40 PM

American Elect may be a force to be reckoned with this year. They are highly organized, and have been working hard to get on the ballot in all States in preparation for the ‘right candidate’ to show their face.

HopeHeFails on February 22, 2012 at 2:24 PM

political operatives who have signed on to the effort – including former McCain aide Mark McKinnon, Will Marshall of the Progressive Policy Institute, former New Jersey governor Christine Todd Whitman, and Bloomberg pollster Douglas Schoen

They are also getting a lot of hedge fund cash and Tom Friedman is a fan. They don’t sound like anyone I would care to support.

sharrukin on February 22, 2012 at 2:43 PM

Who did he Ream?

KOOLAID2 on February 22, 2012 at 2:44 PM

I only wish Blanco were in jail. Her pissing match with Ray Nagin before Katrina was probably a huge reason so many people died.

teke184 on February 22, 2012 at 2:40 PM

True, but she was able to deflect critisism to President Bush with help from the press.

chicken thief on February 22, 2012 at 2:45 PM

True, but she was able to deflect critisism to President Bush with help from the press.

chicken thief on February 22, 2012 at 2:45 PM

She did on the national level, but people within the state knew better. That’s why she retired rather than suffer the indignity of being the first Governor since Roemer to not finish within the top 2 of the “jungle primary”.

teke184 on February 22, 2012 at 2:47 PM

This actually leaves out some important details. He actually finished third behind a someone twice indicted on federal corruption charges (Edwin Edwards) and a former Klansman (David Duke). He was less popular than either one.

AngusMc on February 22, 2012 at 2:27 PM

That whole sad chapter in Louisiana politics spoke volumes, not only of the state of politics in Louisiana at that time, but of the electorate too I believe.

That’s what you get when you vote pragmatically and the same crew keeps swimming in the swamp.

Louisiana has come a long way politically in the last two decades.

Logus on February 22, 2012 at 2:48 PM

That’s what you get when you vote pragmatically and the same crew keeps swimming in the swamp.

The problem in that equation was that there were three sh!tty candidates and only two slots.

Roemer coming in behind the two of them just shows how badly he pissed off some groups between being hailed for tossing Roemer in ’87 and his failed re-election campaign in ’91.

teke184 on February 22, 2012 at 2:49 PM

for tossing Roemer in ’87

sb “for tossing Edwards”

teke184 on February 22, 2012 at 2:50 PM

It’s that fact that is driving his decision. The party and the major television networks have “turned their backs on the democratic process” by excluding him, even though he’s a former governor and congressman, he said in a statement.

This is total bs. If he really was a candidate, the LSM would have surely put him on the stage with the others. What a loser.

Mirimichi on February 22, 2012 at 2:51 PM

Roemer has never won office as a Republican; he switched parties during his term as Governor in Louisiana and ended up third in the open primary when he ran for re-election.

A distant third in a primary that pitted Roemer against Edwin Edwards and “former” Ku Klu Klansman David Duke.

When you can’t pull it out in that kind of three way race.

DubiousD on February 22, 2012 at 2:54 PM

Hello??!! [tap tap tap] Is this thing on? Sorry if this is a duplicate, but previous attempt to post it didn’t show up…

Be careful what you laugh at. “Americans Elect” is trying hard to become a powerbroker by creating a third-party vote split. You can read about them here. Note their #2 guy was “a former senior political aid for Mitt Romney and Scott Brown”, and #3 and #4 are Mark McKinnon and Doug Schoen (“No Labels”, and Bill Clinton and Bloomberg pollster). The remainder of the “leadership team” are mainly BigMoney types. Look at this one, too.

bofh on February 22, 2012 at 2:57 PM

KBB proved what my poli sci professor taught. That – at the time – there had never been a lieutenant governor in the state of Louisiana that had become governor. In his estimation it was with/for good reason; that the lg’s office is not much more than a glorified tourism director for the state and was seen as a political dead end.

I can only hope that not another lg ever runs for or wins the governorship in Louisiana again, no matter how likeable they are.

KBB broke precedent, but I believe that there were people who voted according to race when KBB ran. Why? That was Bobby Jindal’s first run for governor.

There is a reason why David Duke managed to get as far as he did in the gubenatorial race.

Oh, and being Republican or “conservative” has nothing to do with it as there are many conservative Democrats in Louisiana – it’s only been within the last thirty years or so that Republicans have really made any headway in Louisiana as a party.

Logus on February 22, 2012 at 2:57 PM

Poor guy…. oh well! Let’s elect someone with Ideas!!

Kini on February 22, 2012 at 3:04 PM

Why is Buddy blurry? Or, is that a halo?

Fallon on February 22, 2012 at 3:05 PM

teke184, there were a slew of candidates in the race that included the bad trio. The biggest name following the trio was Clyde Holloway. I don’t know much about Holloway but I certainly recall the name.

I can only believe that principles did not enter the equation when people voted for Edwards, Duke or Roemer.

Logus on February 22, 2012 at 3:05 PM

who is this man butty roamer??

rik on February 22, 2012 at 3:12 PM

Gawd, I just barely remembered he was running. Course I can’t tell ya jack else about him.

Zaggs on February 22, 2012 at 3:13 PM

Better than Obama or Christie. Romney is but another Obama -Romneycare and today -he’s playing the envy card “soaking the rich”

Don L on February 22, 2012 at 3:13 PM

teke184, there were a slew of candidates in the race that included the bad trio. The biggest name following the trio was Clyde Holloway. I don’t know much about Holloway but I certainly recall the name.

I can only believe that principles did not enter the equation when people voted for Edwards, Duke or Roemer.

Logus on February 22, 2012 at 3:05 PM

Yes, there were other candidates, but those three were the only ones with statewide name recognition. Something like that is important when it is a wide field that will be narrowed to two individuals.

Holloway was a US House member who was in the process of losing his Alexandria-area seat due to the 1990 census results, as his district was combined with that of Baton Rouge-area House member Richard Baker. He was the Republican party’s official pick but came in 4th that year.

If Holloway had run a state-level campaign before and had his name out there, he may have drawn off more of the votes that went to Roemer and Duke.

teke184 on February 22, 2012 at 3:17 PM

Roemer/Huntsman
Roemer/Paul
Roemer/Clinton
Roemer/Palin
Roemer/Nader
Roemer/Trump
Oh, the possibilities.
Let’s see if his organization is better at getting their candidate on the ballot than Gingrich’s team.

talkingpoints on February 22, 2012 at 3:17 PM

Ok, I’m not like all of these people asking who, I have heard that name a lot before. I just can’t remember where. LOL

jeffn21 on February 22, 2012 at 3:26 PM

teke184 on February 22, 2012 at 3:17 PM

Meanwhile there evidently was a lot of assuming going on that David Duke just didn’t have a chance… and, who’d vote for Edwin Edwards again?!

Again, I think that race spoke volumes of the electorate at that time. A lot of voters are just dumb voters.

South Carolina and Alvin Greene come to mind as yet another example. I’m sure that there are plenty of others across the nation.

Logus on February 22, 2012 at 3:26 PM

Buddy who?

Vanilla Salt (Jake_W) on February 22, 2012 at 3:27 PM

He makes sense as a Reform Party candidate, he’s been largely a “good government” guy, working to get rid of corruption in LA, and making Campaign Finance Reform his big issue in 2012. He’ll be right at home on their ballot.

vegconservative on February 22, 2012 at 3:28 PM

KBB broke precedent, but I believe that there were people who voted according to race when KBB ran. Why? That was Bobby Jindal’s first run for governor.

Definitely race was a factor in his 2003 loss. I lived in the state at the time and people were stunned as very conservative northern parishes voted for the white Democrat instead of Jindal. Fortunately, Louisiana seems to have gotten over that particular hump.

AngusMc on February 22, 2012 at 3:35 PM

Roemer/Huntsman
Roemer/Paul
Roemer/Clinton
Roemer/Palin
Roemer/Nader
Roemer/Trump
Oh, the possibilities.
Let’s see if his organization is better at getting their candidate on the ballot than Gingrich’s team.

talkingpoints on February 22, 2012 at 3:17 PM

Another option for them is to skip Buddy altogether and go with a far right/far left ticket.
Sarah/Nader 2012!!!

Benedict Nelson on February 22, 2012 at 3:38 PM

AngusMc, frankly I think it’s taking a die-off to change the voting trends of Louisiana. A generational shift. I’m glad it’s occuring.

There are still pockets of racism in the state – as there are across the nation.

I lived in the state until 2005 and if the “stars aligned” I’d love to live there again with my family. I have family mostly in St. Landry parish.

But, it’d totally have to be a “God thing”.

sigh.

Logus on February 22, 2012 at 3:41 PM

I loved Buddy as the voice of Scuttle the Seagull in Little Mermaid.

GoodSamaritan on February 22, 2012 at 4:19 PM

Sarah/Nader sounds almost musical.
Roemer sounds like expensive cell phone service.
Barack Obama sounds like a donkey taking a dump. :-)

WhatNot on February 22, 2012 at 4:26 PM

Perot did not change the outcome of the race in 1992. If it were a one on one race between Clinton and Bush, Clinton still would have won.

blerch on February 22, 2012 at 5:07 PM

Perot did not change the outcome of the race in 1992. If it were a one on one race between Clinton and Bush, Clinton still would have won.

blerch on February 22, 2012 at 5:07 PM

I don’t believe that. If Perot votes went as little as 60/40 Bush, Bush would have won. I haven’t seen any exit polling accurate enough or broad enough to determine the breakdown.

slickwillie2001 on February 22, 2012 at 5:36 PM

Kataklysmic on February 22, 2012 at 2:26 PM

lolz..You Go Buddy..:)

Dire Straits on February 22, 2012 at 5:43 PM

So that’s the stalking horse candidate that the trojan horse party, America Elect is going with. Good. Considering that AE is works funded with the hopes of drawing Indies away from the gop, I was afraid that it might be a winning formula based on successes at local and state elections. If they had gone with trump or some other dynamic Indie, their odds would be greater. Methinks Former might account for 1%, but no serious threat to a conservative. On the other hand, he could handicap Mittness severely in his quest. We’ll see soon enough.

AH_C on February 22, 2012 at 5:44 PM

Methinks Former might account for 1%, but no serious threat to a conservative. On the other hand, he could handicap Mittness severely in his quest. We’ll see soon enough.

AH_C on February 22, 2012 at 5:44 PM

Arrrgh. “Former” should be “Roemer”

AH_C on February 22, 2012 at 5:47 PM

Who is Buddy Roehmer?

Kevin M on February 22, 2012 at 6:03 PM

Never heard of them until now. So much for their being a “force”.

Bitter Clinger on February 22, 2012 at 2:35 PM

they’re for real and have real money with the intent to ensure the GOP loses in a three way split. Just remember that they are NOT conservative in the least, more like Mikey Bloomberg ‘ kind of party.

Last I heard I believe they did or are very close to getting on the ballot in all 50 states. Wouldn’t surprise me that if Mittness is on the ticket, Bloomberg jumps in as the AE candidate.

Then we’ll have a four way run between AE, DNC, RNC and Conservative Party candidates . Should be fun as Bloomy would draw donk leaning Indies his way and Mittness loses the conservative base to the CP.

AH_C on February 22, 2012 at 6:13 PM

I wish Buddy Huntsman the best of luck.

ModerateMan on February 22, 2012 at 6:16 PM

I wanna talk about me
Wanna talk about I
Wanna talk about number one
Oh my me my
What I think
What I like
What I know
What I want
What I see
I like talking about you, you, you, you usually
But occasionally
I wanna talk about me (me, me, me, me)
I wanna talk about me (me, me)
- Toby Keith

ExpressoBold on February 22, 2012 at 6:20 PM

Louisiana has come a long way politically in the last two decades.

Logus

It still has a long way to go, too.

Knott Buyinit on February 22, 2012 at 7:28 PM

Perot did not change the outcome of the race in 1992. If it were a one on one race between Clinton and Bush, Clinton still would have won.

I don’t think so. Perot bled off mostly disaffected conservative votes from the Bush ticket. Take away that candidacy and most of those disaffected conservatives would’ve voted for Bush (no way would they have voted for Clinton).

So unless most of the conservatives stayed home, no Perot = no Clenis, and we would’ve been spared a stain (in more ways than one) on American politics. And would’ve been spared Shrillary as well.

crazy_legs on February 23, 2012 at 8:26 AM