Friday, July 06, 2007


Some friendly advice for Fred Thompson

Campaigns and Elections magazine's James Pindell has some advise for Fred Thompson. A sample (you'll need a subscription to read the entire article):

"The excitement over Thompson was fueled by the belief that none of the Republican front-runners were the true Reagan conservative the base was looking for.

"Here are three lessons for the Thompson campaign gleaned from these other recent draft campaigns:

"Lesson 1: Understand that draft movements are not about you—they are about the idea of you.

"This is probably the most important lesson for Thompson’s campaign. Many conservatives are drawn to his ego and self-confidence, but if he takes it too far it could lead to his downfall.

"The draft Thompson movement has been similar so far to the Wesley Clark movement. When it came to electability, many Democrats thought Clark was the perfect candidate. But Clark showed he was more popular as a non-candidate than as a candidate.

"So now consider [Barack] Obama. When he made his first 'testing the waters' trip to New Hampshire, he said something very interesting about why 1,500 people would pay to see him and why there were so many reporters covering him.

"'I think to some degree I’ve become a shorthand or symbol or stand-in for a spirit that the last election in New Hampshire represented,' Obama said, talking about major Democratic gains in the midterms. 'It’s a spirit that says we are looking for something different—we want something new.'

"If Thompson embraces that type of spirit—that he serves as a symbol for the party returning to its glory days—voters may overlook his mistakes for the greater cause."

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