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Bloomberg Says Nader Has Right To Run

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, whose aides and advisers have openly discussed plans for a possible independent candidacy for the billionaire, dismissed suggestions that third-party candidates could play a spoiler role in November.

Asked about fears among some Democrats that a candidacy by Ralph Nader could harm their party's nominee in the fall, Bloomberg told reporters, "this business of Ralph Nader being a spoiler -- you know, in any three-way race, two of the three are going to be spoilers. … Everybody's got a right to do it -- you're not spoiling anything. … If people want to vote for you, let them vote for you, and why shouldn't they?" he added, according to the AP.

Bloomberg publicly says he is not a candidate but he – and his ability to pour the kind of money such a campaign would require – have spurred constant buzz over the past months about his plans. Asked if it was too late to launch such a candidacy, Bloomberg displayed some deep knowledge of the ballot access process, saying, "it's getting close to being too late. It would take a lot of money, which Ralph Nader doesn't have, to get on all the ballots ... some states make it difficult, some states make it easier."

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