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September 30, 2014

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Ralph Nader on the issues

Presidential Candidates on Health Care

With the latest scandal or character attack dominating most of today's political headlines, many voters are still unaware of the Presidential candidates' views on key issues. The Sun looks into the major and third-party candidates' plans for health care in America, with summaries on Barack Obama, John McCain, Ralph Nader, Bob Barr and Cynthia McKinney.

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Independent presidential candidate Ralph Nader speaks to students and others during a news conference and campaign stop at OSU-Tulsa on Thursday, Sept. 19, 2008.

The following are Ralph Nader's positions on selected issues:

Environment and Energy

As might be expected with any Green Party affiliate, Ralph Nader has strong opinions when it comes to the issues of energy and the environment. He strongly believes that the country is too dependent, "addicted" even, to fossil fuels. In his blog, Nader criticizes current presidential candidates, saying none of them will address the commercial interests of the U.S. Energy Department. He adds, "We need a major environmental health agenda that challenges these entrenched interests with major new initiatives in solar energy, doubling motor vehicle fuel efficiency, and other quantified sustainable and clean energy technologies." ... more

Foreclosures

For years, Ralph Nader has consistently addressed the issue of predatory lending leading to foreclosures and bankruptcies, both within the housing market and the credit card industry. In 2000, he cited New York Times and ABC reports on predatory lending. He criticized Congress, saying the failure to make housing affordable is a predatory lender's greatest ally. In 2002, Nader explored the connection between reforms in laws on bankruptcy and predatory lending. He accused Congress of failing to protect citizens and instead listening to big-business campaign contributors. He also outlined what is needed to stop future foreclosures: strong federal statutes against all aspects of predatory lending. ... more

Health Care

Upon making his entrance into the 2008 presidential race, Ralph Nader claimed to be the only candidate for a single-payer universal health care system. Nader is a harsh critic of the current health care system, which he believes wastes $350 billion a year on "needless administrative expenses." He believes cutting down on administrative costs will give the nation the resources to offer universal health care for all citizens. He has suggested looking to Canada as a model for adopting a better health care system.... more

Immigration

According to Ralph Nader, people would stop immigrating to the U.S. if economic desperation and political repression ended within their home countries. Therefore, the first step is to "stop supporting oligarchs, dictatorships, authoritarian regimes that drive people to leave." He called the idea of open borders "a totally absurd proposition" because it would negatively impact the economy. Instead, he believes in decriminalizing the border and allowing work permits for short periods of time. ... more

Taxes

While Ralph Nader has not put forth a specific tax plan, he has said he wants to "put meat in the process of progressive taxation." He believes the rich should be taxed at a high rate and strongly opposes George W. Bush's tax cuts for the wealthy. Large corporations, Nader says, should pay more taxes because big business tax breaks hurt smaller corporations and families. Nader plans to focus more on taxing corporations, as opposed to adjusting the income tax. ... more

Yucca Mountain

Currently, Nader has no specific stance regarding Yucca Mountain. However, during a 1997 interview on PBS' "Frontline," he said that due to possible seismic activity, conflicting scientific data and the porous rocks, Yucca Mountain was not a viable place to store nuclear waste. He went on to say that the ideal situation would be to put the waste in a temporary place that in 50 to 100 years from now, could be reopened and separated to remove the hazardous materials. When it was pointed out that Yucca Mountain was designed to do exactly that, Nader said that it would be OK, but "only if there is an independent core of scientists, geologists, engineers, who would sign off on it, who have no ties, no ambitions, either to join the nuclear industry, to join the government agency." ... more

— Las Vegas Sun New Media Intern April Corbin compiled this report.

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