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Nader to Obama: Include Third Parties in Inaugural

This was posted in the Washington Post's Reliable Source section today:

You'll never guess who really, really wants to go to the inauguration: Ralph Nader.

The sometimes cantankerous outsider has sent an open letter to Barack Obama asking that third-party candidates -- the Libertarian Party's Bob Barr, the Constitution Party's Chuck Baldwin and the Green Party's Cynthia McKinney -- be included among the Democrats, Republicans, business execs and others at the January ceremonies.

"I have not spoken to any of them about this recommendation," Nader writes. "To avoid any semblance of self-interest, I will delete my name from this list and watch the event on C-SPAN."

Oh, c'mon -- the man's dying for an invite.

Nader called us to elaborate: "In other Western European countries, it's a political courtesy to have their competitors. It's a demonstration of unity." Er, competitors? Obama and John McCain got 123 million votes combined; other presidential candidates received a total of 1.5 million votes nationwide, with Nader in the lead at 685,000.

Nader assumes that both McCain and Sarah Palin will have some role in the inaugural weekend and, frankly, seems to want some of the same respect. The swearing-in? "That's the best and most visible," he said. "I don't expect to be invited to an inaugural ball."

If the president-elect does cough up a ticket, will Nader behave? "I don't have to be asked to be respectful," he chided us.

By Roxanne Roberts and Amy Argetsinger

By David A Nakamura  |  November 14, 2008; 1:48 PM ET  | Category:  Swearing-in Ceremony
Previous: Luxury Apartments Offered for Inauguration Week | Next: BREAKING NEWS: Obama Taps Emmett Beliveau to Run Inauguration Committee

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Will the inauguration be before or after the Obamas attend a funeral or memorial service for his grandmother? Can't help think this is a loose end that hasn't been tied up in the public domain, in any case. Has his grandmother been laid to rest? Does anyone know? Isn't this getting a little awkward?

Posted by: ac11 | November 14, 2008 2:53 PM | Report abuse

I just read online that a memorial service will be held today (Friday) and is open to the public. The Obama family will not be there, but plan to go to Hawaii sometime in December to pay their respects.

Posted by: june6mo | November 14, 2008 2:59 PM | Report abuse

The reason other candidates should be invited to attend the inauguration is symbolic.

Firstly, by their presence the losing candidates acknowledge to the public the right of the incoming president to take office. This action ia another confirmation of his legitimacy.

Secondly,the incoming President treats the losers and their supporters with respect rather than dismissing them as having no significance.

Posted by: robertjames1 | November 14, 2008 7:50 PM | Report abuse

Nader called Obama an Uncle Tom in a typically sour radio interview, and repeated it and refused to amend it in an appearance on Fox with Shepard Smith, who gave him every chance to do so. And this was the day after the election. Would you invite him? Delete your name Ralph. Please.

Posted by: Jessel1 | November 15, 2008 7:03 AM | Report abuse

ignor him... he is a nut.

Posted by: angriestdogintheworld | November 15, 2008 12:40 PM | Report abuse

Ha Ha Ha...Ralph Nadar cost the Democrates the last election. Now he wants to be seen. Go crawl under a rock and never come back. How many times are you willing to lose.

Posted by: MsRita | November 15, 2008 2:51 PM | Report abuse

Go away, Ralph. America is tired of you. Your day is done.

Posted by: dsrobins | November 15, 2008 3:13 PM | Report abuse

Just say no to Nader.

Posted by: rlj1 | November 15, 2008 6:28 PM | Report abuse

ralph nader has about as much relevance as white patent leather shoes, leisure suits, or a nehru jacket. he's not even mildly amusing. shouldn't he be trying his organizing skills in a quiet nursing home?

Posted by: jimfilyaw | November 15, 2008 10:59 PM | Report abuse

No entitlements, Mr. Nader. Earn it. Or, get in line with us little people.

Posted by: jmf3210 | November 16, 2008 8:46 AM | Report abuse

Wow - there's an awful lot of animosity here. I'm a proud Obama supporter and campaign volunteer - but I still believe that one of the best things about the United States is the idea that our ideas can be evaluated on their merits, not on who they come from. I'm not sure why the Post feels the need to be so snarkey toward Nader (as it has in several stories through the campaign). Obama has a lot more grace than some of his supporters.

Posted by: chknight1 | November 20, 2008 10:54 AM | Report abuse

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