The project to recruit a centrist third-party standard bearer appears to have fizzled. But it's unclear what happens in states where it's already on the ballot.
As David Karpf wrote here 10 days ago, the Americans Elect third-party experiment of 2012 looks like it has hit a dead end. No declared candidate is anywhere close to hitting the group's requirement of earning 10,000 supporters across at least 10 states, with at least 1,000 from each state. Former Louisiana governor Buddy Roemer is the closest at just 5,840. He has less than 600 from California. As Jonathan Tilove points out in his story in the Times-Picayune, that means Roemer has more followers on Twitter than he has supporters who actually want him on AE's presidential ballot line.
Americans Elect had an ambitious plan to hold several rounds of online voting to winnow down what its leaders had hoped would be a competitive field of national candidates, and spent a reported $35 million circulating ballot petitions and building the organizational and online infrastructure to attract those candidates to its fold. It also attracted a fair amount of media coverage for its efforts, and encomia from the likes of Thomas Friedman, John Avlon, and Lawrence Lessig. But it never caught on, in part for the reasons I outlined almost a year ago: the lack of transparency about its finances, which made potential supporters distrustful (even spawning a watchdog blog called AETransparency), and the evident lack of public interest in its founders' evident desire to find a "centrist" candidate. It's possible that AE could have evolved differently, but that would have required that the vehicle be more genuinely controlled by its supporters, and that was an option that AE's leaders clearly didn't want to allow.