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Oprah, Bill Gates, Sheryl Sandberg: Ralph Nader's 2016 presidential picks

Daily Ticker

Forget Hillary or Rand Paul. Could Oprah or Bill Gates be the country's next president? Ralph Nader, famed consumer advocate, political activist and author of Told You So: The Big Book of Weekly Columns, has published his presidential wish list and the chosen 20 are not what you'd expect from Nader. First, they're all wealthy (billionaires or multimillionaires) and only a select few are longtime progressives.

Nader shot to fame when he criticized the U.S. auto industry’s safety practices in the 1960s, and his controversial exposes have led to many consumer-protection reforms over the years.

Nader explains in the video above that these individuals (full list below) have the potential to shake up the "stale two-party tyranny" system that excludes independent and third-party candidates. (Nader is a former four-time presidential candidate, having run in 1996, 2000, 2004 and 2008). Six in 10 Americans says a third party is needed according to an October 2013 Gallup poll.

Why billionaires?

"If you have a lot of money the media and the polls will cover you," Nader says. "You an have a more competitive democracy instead of a two-party duopoly that gets more similar every four years."

Related: Ralph Nader's 17 Solutions: "It's Easier Than You Think to Turn Our Country Around"

The mega rich selected by Nader are "modestly enlightened rich people" or MERPs for short -- men and women who have managed businesses, made charitable contributions, been successful on Wall Street or have spoken up on controversial issues: "They're not ego drvien or trying to sell new multi-millionaire dollar condominiums," says Nader.

A billionaire president may not seem so outrageous given that more than half of Congress are millionaires.

Even if a billionaire put his or her hat in the presidential candiate ring for 2016, can a third-party -- no matter how influential or charismatic -- get anything done in a divided Congress? Watch the video to hear what Nader says!

Nader's presidential picks:

  1. Thomas Steyer
  2. Ray Dalio
  3. Oprah
  4. Jerome Kohlberg
  5. Barry Diller
  6. John Arnold
  7. Ted Turner
  8. Thomas Siebel
  9. Chase Coleman
  10. Marc Andreessen
  11. David Rubenstein
  12. Steve Case
  13. Sheryl Sandberg
  14. Bill Gross
  15. William Conway
  16. Stanley Druckenmiller
  17. Abigail Johnson
  18. Bil Gates
  19. George Kaiser
  20. Tom Golisano

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