News Release: Browne Pulls Even with Nader in Michigan

Browne Pulls Even with Nader in Michigan
Tim O’Brien

CONTACT: Tim O’Brien
(313) 562-5778

DEARBORN. Libertarian presidential candidate Harry Browne has pulled even in Michigan with Green Party candidate Ralph Nader according to the latest EPIC/MRA poll.

The poll of 600 likely voters, conducted on October 11 and 12, shows both candidates at 2% and has a margin of error of 4%.

The combined votes for the two “minor” party candidates is greater than the difference between Democrat Al Gore and Republican George Bush, who stood at 45% and 42% respectively. If the relative numbers hold until election day, the Libertarian and Green candidates will hold the balance of power in one of the closest and most hotly contested states in the country.

“With well over a hundred candidates — many of whom are running very active campaigns — we’re not surprised,” said state chair Stacy Van Oast. “We are an actual political party,” she continued, “not just a political personality cult with a celebrity at the top of an otherwise nearly empty slate.”

As further evidence Libertarian Party of Michigan executive director Tim O’Brien pointed to a similar rise in the polls of the party’s US Senate candidate, Michael Corliss. An October 12 Rasmussen survey of 885 likely voters (with a 3% margin of error) put Corliss at 2% — tying him with Reform Party senate candidate Mark Forton. Green Party candidate Matthew Abel trailed both at 1%.

Another factor that may be contributing to the growing prominence of both LP candidates is advertising that has been airing on “talk radio” stations throughout the state since the end of last month.

“There’s no question that broadcast advertising goes a long way both in terms of raising our profile and giving credibility to our candidates,” O’Brien said.

“Unfortunately,” rejoined Ms. Van Oast, “the media seem so blinded by celebrity that we continue to be ignored no matter how well we do. Harry Browne,” she observed, “is a perfect case in point. Despite doing just as well in the polls, his campaign gets a tiny fraction of the coverage given Mr. Nader. Indeed,” she concluded, “Browne gets far less coverage than Pat Buchanan. And Mr. Buchanan isn’t even on the ballot in Michigan!”

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