Republican presidential candidate and former Louisiana Gov. Buddy Roemer announced Wednesday evening that he would officially seek the presidential nomination of Americans Elect, a group that seeks to secure ballot access for a bipartisan third-party ticket.
“Today I officially announce that I will seek the Americans Elect nomination as a proud Republican but as an even prouder American,” Roemer said in a statement.
Roemer is the first candidate to openly seek the Americans Elect nomination.
He initially considered the possibility of an Americans Elect ticket after he found out about being excluded from the Florida primary ballot, and decided against being on the South Carolina primary ballot because of the required filing fee.
His campaign manager, Carlos Sierra, told The Daily Caller that he had begun to investigate the possibility of an Americans Elect run on Roemer’s behalf, but that Roemer was still focused on the Republican nomination.
However, in his statement Wednesday, Roemer expressed dismay at the lack of seriousness with which the Republican Party had taken his candidacy.
“I will take my message of ending business as usual in Washington directly to the American people. No other candidate is free from the special interests or has the experience I have,” said Roemer. “I am a former governor, four-term congressman, successful businessman and Harvard-educated economist. And yet, the Republican Party has not allowed me in the debates,” he griped.
“Perhaps they don’t like my message about the corrupting influence of money in politics. But, I believe the American people want to hear the message, so I’m going to seek the nomination of Americans Elect which appears eager to welcome diverse and controversial opinions that may upset the status quo.”
Americans Elect does not forbid candidates seeking its nomination from also running on another ticket, so Roemer would not have to drop his bid for the Republican nomination, and he said he would not.
“I will continue to campaign for the Republican nomination and hope to surprise everyone on January 10 in New Hampshire,” he said. At the moment, Roemer is not included in most polls, and rarely garners above one percent if he does appear.
Americans Elect would require that Roemer pick a running mate from a different party. He indicated his willingness to do so earlier this week when he said Connecticut independent Sen. Joe Lieberman would be his top choice for a vice president. Lieberman politely declined.
Sierra said Roemer would also like Vermont independent Sen. Bernie Sanders, former Clinton chief of staff Erskine Bowles and Harvard professor Dr. Lawrence Lessig as running mates.