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Nader endorsed by Reform Party, gets ballot access in 7 states

Ralph Nader won the endorsement of the Reform Party on Wednesday, giving him access, if he accepts, to the presidential ballot in the seven states where the party still has legal status.

The states include the crucial battlegrounds of Florida and Michigan, where Mr. Nader would not have to collect signatures and where he could conceivably swing the presidential election if the voting was close. He would have had to collect more than 92,000 signatures to get on the Florida ballot alone, and the Reform Party's action, which is essentially the party's nomination, relieves him of that requirement.

Mr. Nader is not yet on the ballot in any state. The Reform Party's endorsement means that he will automatically qualify for the ballot in the seven states, which include five -- Colorado, Kansas, Mississippi, Montana and South Carolina --- that voted for George W. Bush in 2000 and are likely to do so again. -- Reform Party Backs Nader, Offering Line on Ballots (New York Times)