Mulling Third Party Bid, Buddy Roemer Reaches Out to Occupy Wall Street

By: Kevin Derby | Posted: November 12, 2011 3:55 AM
Buddy Roemer

Buddy Roemer | Credit: Christopher Halloran - Shutterstock

Former Gov. Buddy Roemer of Louisiana, currently making a dark-horse bid for the Republican presidential nomination, is looking to reach out to the Occupy Wall Street movement while speculation increases that he will launch a third party bid for the White House.

"Money in politics has created institutional corruption,” Roemer said in a statement released on Thursday. “Both parties are guilty of taking the big check and are bought by Wall Street. My campaign is the only one that speaks out against this and I look forward to the day lobbyists are not allowed to donate to campaigns. Wall Street grew to be a source of capital for growing companies. It has become something else: a facilitator for greed and for the selling of American jobs. Enough already!"

Roemer released a Web video this week, stressing his support of the Occupy Wall Street movement.

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Taking a page from Jerry Brown’s bid for the Democratic presidential nomination in 1992, Roemer has made campaign finance reform one of the hallmarks of his presidential bid. Like Brown, Roemer has vowed not to accept any contributions of more than $100 and will not accept PAC money. While he has focused on New Hampshire, Roemer has struggled in the polls. He has not been included in any of the debates and has been left off the ballots in key states, including Florida.

As their candidate’s path to the Republican nomination becomes increasingly difficult, this week the Roemer camp threw out signs that he is considering launching a third party or independent bid for the White House. Carlos Sierra, Roemer’s campaign manager, left the door open to the possibility in an interview with the Daily Caller this week. The release that accompanied the new Web video referred to Roemer as “independent-minded” though it stressed he was a Republican and independent voters are important in the New Hampshire primary.

While he has been in banking for the last two decades, Roemer has an accomplished political career in Washington and the Pelican State. Roemer was elected to the U.S. House in 1980 as a Democrat before running for governor in 1987. During his term, Roemer jumped over to the Republicans but lost out in his bid for a second term. Roemer backed Democrat Edwin Edwards over the Republican who bested him in the primary -- former state Rep. David Duke, who had been affiliated with the Ku Klux Klan.

Reach Kevin Derby at kderby@sunshinestatenews.com or at (850) 727-0859.

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