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Buddy Roemer eyes third-party bid via Americans Elect

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Roemer (Jim Cole/AP)

After he's been consistently shut out of the Republican presidential debates for failing to meet minimal polling requirements, former Louisiana governor Buddy Roemer announced Thursday that he's turning his attention to a potential third-party bid for president via the reform group Americans Elect.

"The major parties are united in one regard-- they've got their hands in special interest money," Roemer, who has refused campaign donations above $100 and won't accept political action committee money, told Yahoo News Friday. "And I'd like to make that case."

Americans Elect will permits its nominee to retain his or her original party affiliation, but does want the ticket's vice president not to share the same party affiliation. The group won't make an official nomination until May, and Roemer says he's still assessing the group's background to determine whether he'll sign on with it.

For now, Roemer remains incredibly angry about this year's presidential process. He hopes to use a prospective Americans Elect bid to make a statement about campaign reform--and to call attention to the role money plays in who gets to compete for the nation's highest office.

Asked if turning to a third party diminishes his shot at the presidency, Roemer was emphatic. "How could I have less of a chance than I do now?!" he said. "Ask your audience if they know me."

"I'm the only Republican candidate to serve as both a congressman and a governor," Roemer lamented. "And they've got a pizza guy running for president who never served a day in office."

Roemer said he feels obligated to protect Americans from the current campaign system and a deeply compromised major party process. He added that he doesn't believe that any of the candidates are speaking up for regular citizens.

"I speak for America that's free, and proud and broke and unemployed," he said. "And nobody gives a damn."

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