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INDEPENDENT SENATOR ASKS NADER TO DROP BID

The only independent in the U.S. Senate has written to independent presidential candidate Ralph Nader asking him to drop his campaign in the final days of the race.

Sen. James Jeffords said in a letter that the race is so close in several states that Nader's continued campaigning could tip the outcome.

"I don't think you want to see the average American suffer through another recession, or to see Social Security privatized, or women to lose their right to choose, or the Supreme Court to move dramatically to the right," Jeffords wrote. "Unfortunately, your presence on the ballot in key states could result in exactly that outcome."

Jeffords shook up the Republican Party himself when he dropped out of it three years ago and became an independent, tipping control of the Senate for a short time to the Democrats.

It's unclear what effect it might have if Nader were to stop campaigning. He remains on the ballot in 34 states and the District of Columbia, and early voting has started in many of them.

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