Friday, July 18, 2008 | 4:17 p.m.
CARSON CITY – For the fourth time, Ralph Nader will be in the presidential race in Nevada as an independent candidate.
He’s the first presidential candidate to officially qualify for the ballot in Nevada.
Matt Griffin, deputy secretary of state for elections, said Friday that he has received information from the counties that Nader has nearly 5,000 signatures of registered voters on a petition to qualify for the presidential ballot. He said about 4,700 are needed to qualify for the ballot.
Nader supporters said they had 12,000 signatures. Griffin said he should receive the official numbers next week.
Nader hopes to be on the presidential ballot in 45 states by Sept. 20.
His vice presidential candidate is Matt Gonzalez, and his Nevada electors are Richard Murakami and Frank Kunovic, both of Las Vegas, and Michele Patterson, Miranda Humphrey and Thomas Farrell, all of Reno.
Nader ran as a Green Party presidential candidate in 1996 and received 4,730 votes. In 2000, he again was the Green Party candidate and garnered 15,008 votes. And in 2004, he was the independent candidate with 4,838 votes.
The Democratic and Republican candidates will be officially nominated at their national conventions later this summer.
Nader opposes nuclear power and wants to promote solar energy, cut the military budget, repeal the Taft-Hartley bill which he says is anti-union, and adopt a single-payer national health insurance system. He would also like to see President Bush and Vice President Cheney impeached.