April 9, 2007


For Thompson, Delay Is Costly Money (CHRISTOPHER COOPER, April 9, 2007, Wall Street Journal)

If Fred Thompson decides to run for president, he will have some powerful supporters: The self-described "Tennessee Mafia," a group of Republican politicians from his home state well-versed in the craft of national campaigns. What the actor and former senator may lack is the financial juice that fired the group for more than a quarter century, driving local and national campaigns with astonishing amounts of cash.

"Mafia" members include Howard Baker, a former Republican senator, ambassador and White House chief of staff, who himself ran for president in 1980; Sen. Lamar Alexander, a former two-term Tennessee governor who ran for president in 1996 and 2000; and Bill Frist, the former Senate Republican majority leader, who considered, then rejected his own run for the White House for 2008.

Egged on by a campaign to draft him and buoyed by polls that suggest he would be a serious contender even though he hasn't declared, the conservative and blunt-spoken Mr. Thompson has said he is considering jumping in and may make a decision as early as next month. But in a presidential campaign that is likely to be the most expensive yet -- three candidates have already banked over $20 million in donations -- dithering would seem to be a liability.

They had money, what good did it do them?

Every primary election season has a period of buyers' remorse, when parties turn on their inevitable candidate because he can't possibly measure up to their ideal. It's come early this time, perhaps because of media saturation. But there's only room for one alternative and Mr. Thompson will have little trouble replacing Rudy Giuliani and Mitt romney as the repository of McCain angst. Money takes care of itself.

President-elect Thompson and our next terrorist attack (Bruce Walker, April 9, 2007, Enter Stage Right)

Anyone really watching the development of politics in America today must see that Fred Thompson is really President-Elect Fred Thompson. I say that as someone who thinks Rudy Giuliani would make a great wartime president and who would also do many of the good things for America that he was able to do for New York.

The reality, however, is that even the shadow candidacy of Thompson is casting a huge shadow indeed. The online Sean Hannity poll showed Thompson getting, as an unannounced candidate, more votes that all other Republican candidates combined. Fred Thompson, as an unannounced candidate, is winning every straw poll in the South. Fred Thompson, who will soon be visiting with Republican members of Congress to discuss his possible candidacy, has been overwhelmed by senators and congressman who want to talk with him (probably because he is the best chance Republicans have of re-taking Congress.)

Fred ThompsonWill he win the general election? Fred Thompson is likeable, persuasive and savvy man. Thompson is a conservative on every major issue of the day. Democrats will nominate a Leftist, not a centrist, as their nominee. When is the last time a Leftist defeated a conservative in a presidential election? Try 1916, when Woodrow Wilson – using the Ku Klux Klan Leftist South eked by Charles Evans Hughes. That was not just the last time but the only time.

One might cite LBJ over AUH2O, but it has never happened in the absence of a third party candidate or an incumbent running. That's why the only way that Maverick could lose to Hillary is if a serious Rightist ran in the general.

Posted by Orrin Judd at April 9, 2007 7:21 AM

There was no President Gramm because his nasal Texas twang was all but incomprehensible to the rest of us. Ditto another potentially great president whose accent was too thick for prime time, Haley Barbour.

Posted by: erp [TypeKey Profile Page] at April 10, 2007 2:48 PM