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Fred Thompson's Big Speech Draws a Yawn

Townhall commentary:

''It was not Reaganesque.'' ''No red meat.'' ''Too low key.'' That was the preponderant reaction I heard to Thompson's half-hour presentation (leavened by a few favorable comments, mostly by women, that he was more ''statesmanlike'' and ''presidential'' than the announced candidates). Lincoln Club members, like many conservative Republicans, had been unimpressed by the existing field of Republican hopefuls and envisioned Thompson as the second coming of Ronald Reagan. They did not get it Friday night.

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Rating: 3.7/5 (3 votes cast)

Comments (5)

As soon as the guy actually declares his popularity will likely spike then fall.

The primaries are a long ways off, but based on where we are today I wouldn't be surprised if the Republican race ends up with Giuliani, McCain, Romney and Thompson each pulling 25% of the vote. There is still no clear cut leadership emerging, and as your post indicates, Paul, Thompson isn't "it" either.

Can any conservatives who happen by articulate exactly what it is about Thompson that you guys like - other than the fact that he hasn't yet had the opportunity to let voters see his flaws as the other candidates have...?

Paul Hamilton:

I'll speculate that it's charisma they see in Thompson. Reagan had charisma in spades and that's why there's such a warm glow around their memories of him even though on balance, his administration was not a success.


a couple of things. first (and probably foremost) he can articulate his ideas. when you listen to him give a speech, whether you agree with him or not, you are going to grasp what he is saying, and you're never going to be cringing, waiting for that first verbal meltdown.

secondly, he comes across as a lot more genuine than the other candidates. i can easily picture myself sitting down with Fred at a bar or a sports game and just shooting the shit with him. I can't really see that with Mitt or McCain. And only somewhat with Rudy.

he's also been willing to stand up and take responsibility for his mistakes without blaming them on someone else. personal responsibility and integrity are HUGE in conservative circles.

and have you really spent any time reading what he has written (written himself i might add) or listened to more than one speech? this guy seriously knows what he's talking about. you may or may not agree with his conclusions and answers, but you don't come away with the empty suit feeling.

just a few thoughts off the top of my head.

Paul Hamilton:

Good comments, KE. I just find it interesting that an *actor* is considered the most genuine of the candidates. Just like Reagan and Schwarzenegger...


yeah, so he's an actor. so what? there are good actors and there are bad actors. has nothing to do with how intelligent, determined, or capable they are in other fields.

for example, sean penn is a very good actor. yet he's also a dumbass when it comes to making political statements. reagan was, in all honesty, a mediocre actor, yet he was a great statesman.

fred has the advantage over most other actors because he actually studied and practiced law, was a senator, has been an active political activist for years in an operational type role.

one of the tenets of republican/conservative philosophy is that you judge the individual not some arbitrary group they might belong to.

(tho there is a little bit of dirty pleasure when someone who is classified by leftists group-think into a certain category emerges to make their own decisions. think rice, powell, thomas)


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