Buddy Roemer is not afraid of a political party flip flop. After 20 years as a Democrat, he crossed the aisle to become a Republican. Last year he announced his bid for the Republican presidential primary, but in February chose to run as a third party independent. Roemer says his views have stayed the same. He says it's the parties that are changing.
We sat down with Roemer during a town hall meeting at Tulane University. He said, “I run against the two parties. I run against business as usual. I run against the lobbyist and the PACs and the Super PACs running the country.”
However, he's running on a shoestring budget. Roemer's limiting campaign contributions to $100. Political analyst Jeff Crouere says it's an uphill battle. "He's limiting how much money he’s gonna receive so he doesn't have the money to compete with a Mitt Romney. Romney's gonna spend more money next week than Buddy's going to spend in his entire campaign."
Roemer also hopes to be spending more time behind a podium. He was completely shut out of the Republican debates, but if he gets 15% in the national polls, by law he has to be included in the national debates. Roemer says, "I tried as a Republican. I was the only person running who'd been elected a Congressman and a Governor and I was the only person running who was shut out of every debate- 23 national debates. Is it because they didn't want to hear about the money? You betcha."
Roemer's outspoken about ties to Wall Street and Washington corruption. According to Crouere, it's an increasingly popular message. "There's a lot of dissatisfaction with the two party system. There really is. And if he can tap into that then I think he has a chance, but the question is: is he going to have enough money to get recognized by the American people?"
Roemer's raised over a million so far with more individual contributors than any other candidate, but it's a far cry from the big bucks brought in by Romney and Obama.