Entries in Third Party (4)


Minor Candidates to Debate Tuesday

Eugene Gologursky/WireImage(NEW YORK) -- If unenthusiastic voters aren’t satisfied with Monday’s final presidential debate between President Obama and Mitt Romney, they should take comfort: There will be more debating to be had, with an entirely different set of men doing the talking.

Former New Mexico governor Gary Johnson and three other non-major-party presidential candidates will debate on Tuesday, a day after Obama and Romney square off, with former CNN host Larry King moderating their debate of alternatives at the Hilton Chicago.

The debate will feature the Libertarian Party nominee Johnson, Green Party candidate Jill Stein, Constitution Party candidate Virgil Goode, and Justice Party candidate Rocky Anderson.

The debate is being organized by the Free and Equal Elections Foundation, a 501(c)3 nonprofit group founded to “give every candidate a fair chance at winning their respective elections” and “allow voters to vote for a candidate that best represents their values and beliefs.”

No major networks will carry it -- at least no major American networks. It will stream online at three outlets:, where King now hosts a show; Russian English-language network Russia Today; and the Free and Equal Elections Foundation website.

None of these candidates were invited to square off with President Obama and Mitt Romney in the series of debates hosted by the Commission on Presidential Debates. Ross Perot was the last third-party candidate to appear in those forums, in 1992.

“We are honored to have Larry King moderate this historic debate,” Christina Tobin, founder of the Free and Equal Elections Foundation, said in a written statement released by the group this week. “The previous debates between President Obama and Governor Romney have failed to address the issues that really concern everyday Americans. From foreign policy, to the economy, to taboo subjects like our diminishing civil liberties and the drug war, Americans deserve a real debate, real solutions and real electoral options.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Jon Huntsman: Next Generation 'Screwed,' Calls for the Rise of a Third Party

ChinaFotoPress/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Former presidential candidate Jon Huntsman may have endorsed Mitt Romney, but he emphasized Thursday that he is, “not a surrogate for anybody.”

In an interview on MSNBC’s Morning Joe, Huntsman called for the rise of a third party, saying another option in presidential politics, “would be a healthy thing.”

“I think we’re going to have problems politically until we get some sort of third party movement or some voice out there that can put forth new ideas,” Huntsman said. “Someone’s going to step up at some point and say we’ve had enough of this. The real issues are not being addressed and it’s time that we put forward an alternative vision, a bold thinking. We might not win, but we can certainly influence the debate.”

When pressed as to whom the “we” referred to, Huntsman said, “a whole bunch of Americans out there that can’t find a place politically.” He was quick to rule out his own possible bid as a third party candidate.

“That ain’t gonna be me, by the way,” Huntsman said, pre-empting the inevitable question. “I’m not interested in that.”

But while Huntsman may have ruled out another salvo into presidential politics, his supporters have not. The former Utah governor is currently in second place, behind Ron Paul, in the Americans Elect online candidate drafting process, which began last month. Americans Elect will hold a web-based primary in March that will put a third presidential ticket on the ballot in all 50 states.

Huntsman, who ended his own presidential bid after a poor showing in the New Hampshire primary, did not rule out rescinding his Romney endorsement if a third party candidate emerged.

“I’m not a surrogate for anybody,” Huntsman said. “All I can say is I’m looking at the political marketplace and the duopoly is tired and we’re stuck in a rut.”

He said Romney was the best option given the lay of the land today.

“Until such time as we can fundamentally address the economic side we’re going to be in bad shape,” Huntsman said. “I think Mitt Romney’s the best person to handle that economic side.”

The former ambassador to China was extremely pessimistic about the current state of the economy and about his party’s ability to deal with the country’s big problems.

“Gone are the days when the Republican Party used to put forth big, bold visionary stuff,”  Huntsman said. “When you have 100 percent debt to GDP you’re sunk. I mean, the next generation is completely screwed, let’s put it that way.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Poll: Nearly Half of Americans Say It's Time for a Third Party

Comstock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Nearly half of Americans say it’s time for a new major political party, according to the latest ABC News/Washington Post poll, and nearly seven in 10 say they’d at least consider voting for its candidate for president.  The question remains, however, whether such a candidate, if one emerges, could in fact break the habit of traditional party loyalties.

Other results in Friday's poll suggest it’d be a challenge.  Just 22 percent say they’d definitely support a third-party candidate, even given one, “with whom you agree on most issues.”  More, 28 percent, say they definitely would not support such a candidate, agreement on the issues notwithstanding.  The rest would simply consider it.

Interest in a third-party candidate comes disproportionately from independents -- a group that’s grown to record heights in recent years, but also is less likely to vote. Overall, 48 percent of Americans think the country needs a third party, ranging from 61 percent of independents to 36 and 40 percent of Democrats and Republicans, respectively.

Moreover, fewer than one in three adults -- 29 percent -- feel “strongly” that a third party is needed, including fewer than half of independents, 40 percent.  That raises the question of whether efforts to build one would have enough backing to succeed.

The poll, produced for ABC by Langer Research Associates, also finds that even among independents, just 28 percent say they’d definitely vote for a third-party candidate with whom they agreed on most issues.  That’s more than the share of Democrats or Republicans who say so (15 and 19 percent), but hardly an overwhelming show of support. 

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Poll: Challenges for Paul, Trump, Bloomberg in Third Party Candidacy

Alex Wong/Getty Images | ABC/Ida Mae Astute | The City of New York(NEW YORK) --  It won’t be easy for the three top-mentioned possibilities -- Ron Paul, Donald Trump and New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg -- to undertake the task of mounting a third-party candidacy for president.  The latest ABC News/Washington Post poll finds that each would have significant challenges were he to do so.

Americans divide evenly in basic favorable versus unfavorable views of Paul -- unchanged from last month -- and Paul faces serious questions even in his own party both on his personal qualifications and the policies he’d pursue if elected.

Trump, while more popular than Paul among Republicans, and the best known of the three, is the least popular overall.  More Americans view him unfavorably than favorably, by 48 percent to 40 percent.

Bloomberg is much less known -- 44 percent of Americans haven’t formed an opinion of him -- and, like Paul, gets just an even split among those who have. He’s most popular among liberal Democrats, a group that comprises only 12 percent of the public overall.

That’s not to say third-party candidates can’t have an impact in the upcoming election. In an ABC/Post poll released earlier this week, Mitt Romney and President Obama were dead even among registered voters, 47-47 percent. But when Paul was added as a theoretical independent candidate, he pulled 21 percent support, siphoned mostly from Romney, putting Obama 10 points ahead.

Third-party candidacies often arise in times of economic discontent, and that certainly applies to current times. In an expression of discontent with the major parties, more Americans have identified themselves as independents than as either Democrats or Republicans for nearly two-and-a-half years -- the longest run of its kind since ABC/Post polling started in 1981.

That said, an ABC/Post poll completed on Oct. 30 found interest in a nonparty candidate to be broad but not deep. Sixty-one percent responded favorably to the idea, but far fewer, 25 percent, endorsed it strongly.

Doing well takes a popular candidate, and as noted, Paul, Trump and Bloomberg all have challenges.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio