Try 2 Focus has some posts talking about efforts to get a nationwide movement to write-in Fred Thompson for President:
That’s the sum of it. If you can’t bring yourself to vote for the offerings in your primary, or if the eventual nominee is somebody you can’t stomach, don’t sit out, and don’t vote for the Democrat. Write in Fred Thompson’s name.
By doing so, you send a message that can’t be mistaken or spun. It is a message that says:
“I am a Republican who wanted to vote for a conservative GOP candidate, but wasn’t able to do so. I can’t vote for a Democrat, but I can’t vote for any of the Republicans, either. So I’m writing in the name of the candidate I wish I could have voted for, because he is the kind of candidate I could support.”
They have to learn that if they want conservative votes, they have to nominate candidates conservatives would want to vote for.
This strategy is the only one that offers any hope of changing the leftward move of the GOP in the future. Sitting out won’t do it – they can spin the reasons why you sat out. Voting Democrat won’t do it, they can spin it that the GOP candidates weren’t liberal enough. Even voting “None of the Above” won’t do it, because that doesn’t specify what you want instead of none of the above.
Exactly. That is what voting for Ross Perot in 1992 did: it sent the message that the American people wanted fiscal conservatism in Congress. And what happened based on that high vote for Ross Perot? The Republican Party heeded the message, campaigned on fiscal conservatism and took back the House for the first time in 40 years in 1994.
So all those who say that the Ross Perot votes in 1992 were wasted votes are foolish. The Ross Perot voters gave us the House in 1994, because the Republican Party got the message. We can send a similar message in 2008. Voting for McCain simply sends the message that conservatism is dead.
As to what to do with the Presidential part of the ballot, I’ve been pondering various alternatives. Leave it blank or write in and, in the latter case, who[m] to write in? Given the choices we’re likely to have, anything from Genghis Khan to Mickey Mouse would seem more reasonable than what’s on the menu, but I’ve come to the conclusion that I’ll just write in Fred. If enough people do so, that too will send a message, as in “listen, I take my voting rights seriously and I showed up to vote, but there was nothing there to vote for so I just wrote in somebody that I WOULD have voted for.” Again: if enough people do so, it’ll be bloody hard for the RINOs and the MSM to spin it, as they’re sure to try to do.
I found this via Real Clear Politics. It is an article by Rick Moran at The American Thinker which highlights the strengths of Fred Thompson as a Presidential candidate, but notes that his candidacy has not gotten support from the people who have been claiming they wanted a candidate such as him.
When all is said and done in this Primary campaign, people will blame Fred Thompson for running a bad campaign, not having “fire in the belly”, not wanting the Presidency enough, being “boring” or being “lazy”. But, those, in my opinion, are simply pretty lame excuses for not supporting this man for the Presidency.
In my opinion, the biggest mistake Fred Thompson made was believing the American voters were adults and wanted a serious look at politics and our government. He made the mistake of believing conservatives when they said they wanted a conservative to run for President, because they were tired with RINOs. He made the mistake of believing the American people wanted a campaign focused on policy and ideology and the future of the role of government in our lives, instead of focused on good hair and playing guitars and arguing over which candidate has more charm or is the better “Christian Leader” or who was the bigger war hero. Bill Clinton played musical instruments and had charm. Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton were Christian leaders. And John Kerry was a war hero. Apparently, if these people ran in the Republican Primary in 2008, they would be getting support, because the candidates who are running their campaigns based on their talking points are the ones getting the praise. Meanwhile, the only candidate focusing on policy and ideology similar to Ronald Reagan, has been attacked mercilessly and relegated to the trash heap of political candidates.
All I can say is that I made the same mistake as Fred Thompson: I actually believed the American conservative voters when they cried and bitched and moaned and complained about all the RINOs in office and were begging for a true Conservative candidate. But, as it turns out, Conservatives have a lot in common with most women. They bitch about not having good men available to them, but then when they happen to find one, they end up going with the bad men anyway. Only to bitch some more when the bad men treat them exactly how they should have expected to be treated.
Well, when the RINO that the GOP electorate is about to nominate ends up being exactly what we all expect, you won’t be getting a shoulder to cry on or any sweet talk from me to cheer you up. You lie in the RINO bed you made.
Fred Thompson is not the most inspiring speaker in the GOP race for President. Nor is he the best looking or the smoothest talking among the candidates running. He doesn’t have Mitt Romney’s hair or Mike Huckabee’s glibness. He isn’t as aggressively positive as Rudy Giuliani. And while his personal story is compelling, it can’t compete with John McCain’s inspirational journey from POW to the gates of the White House.
But Fred Thompson is perhaps the most substantative candidate to run for President in many years. He has taken the time to think about what should be the relationship between the government and the governed. He has framed his thoughts within the context of a set of bedrock conservative principles that animates his thinking and generates sound ideas about where America should be headed.
There is a heft to Thompson, a seriousness of purpose that none of the other candidates can match. It is most pronounced during the debates where Thompson’s answers to questions are more subtle and nuanced than those of his rivals. His sometimes laconic style zings his opponents with brutal accuracy. Often, the candidate will answer a question by stating “Yep” or “Nope” and pause a few seconds to gather his thoughts. What follows is almost always coherent and is informed by years of experience in government.
His now famous moment during the Des Moines Register debate where he refused to raise his hand like a schoolboy when the moderator asked who believed in global warming was a metaphor for the entire Thompson campaign; keeping the Mickey Mouse to a minimum while trying to be as substantative as possible with the voters. In short, Thompson is running the campaign his way and not in a manner dictated by any previous candidate’s success or any criticism that comes his way from media pundits.
He has well thought out policy positions – “White Papers” the campaign calls them – have won him almost universal praise from sources as wildly divergent as the Washington Post and the National Review.
For instance, the Wall Street Journal had this to say about Thompson’s tax plan:
“However, what’s refreshing about the Thompson plan is that it goes well beyond the current Republican mantra to make “the Bush tax cuts permanent.” That is certainly needed, but the GOP also needs a more ambitious agenda, especially with economic growth slowing. The flat tax has the added political benefit of assaulting the special interests who populate the Gucci Gulch outside Congress’s tax-writing committee rooms. Lower rates and simplify the tax code, and you instantly reduce the opportunities for Beltway corruption. It is both a tax policy and political reform.
ABC had this to say about his plan to save Social Security:
Republican presidential contender Fred Thompson’s plan to save Social Security and protect seniors, which he introduced Friday afternoon in a Washington, D.C., hotel, differs starkly from standard election year pabulum on the subject in one key way: He’s actually treating voters like adults.
If all of this is true, why is Fred Thompson fighting for his political life this Saturday in the South Carolina primary?
It is a question that, if Thompson’s bid falls short, will be asked by many who saw the former Tennessee senator’s entry into the race as a godsend. In the end, the candidate must look to his own efforts and the way the campaign began.
Leaving aside the question of whether Thompson’s September entry into the race could be considered “too late” there is the reality of how that campaign was conducted. Looking back, one could see it was unfocused, even aimless, in its first weeks with the candidate himself trying to find his voice. His early efforts were spotty and sometimes dreadfully boring. By many reports, voters came away perplexed and not a little disappointed.
Thompson’s Socratic style of addressing those early crowds was a good way to discuss issues on a substantive level but a lousy way to run for president. Voters more attuned to snappy, one sentence solutions to the problems of the world coming from other candidates found that when listening to Thompson, they had to think, not react emotionally.
In this way, Thompson appealed to people more on an intellectual level. This was fine as far as it went but it brought him few converts and elicited nothing but contempt from the media.
How often have we heard the refrain that the American people wanted a campaign that dealt with issues not personalities? Well, here was Fred Thompson supposedly giving people what we were told they wanted and his once robust poll numbers began to plummet. Seeking an explanation, reporters and pundits who saw Thompson arrived at the conclusion that the candidate didn’t want it bad enough, that he had no “fire in the belly,” that he hated campaigning and didn’t extend himself as the other candidates were doing.
There may be a glimmer of truth in some of that conventional wisdom. Perhaps the candidate believed it was enough that he put his ideas on the table and let the American people decide whether or not they were worthy of consideration. Indeed, Thompson has said as much in the past. What perhaps the candidate didn’t realize is that fighting for those ideas and tying them to overarching themes is the most effective way to reach the voter.
But for whatever reason – the befuddlement of the press over his style of campaigning or a perceived lack of energy and desire – the candidate found himself at the end of November trailing badly in the polls. It was then that the campaign seemed to find itself and Thompson found those themes as well as his issues and tied them together. Crowds began to react more positively. It appeared the candidate himself was more energized and active.
But Thompson was pushing against weeks of very negative press and a conventional wisdom that had all but written him off. It was a daunting task to turn the campaign around but he has. Now he must convince voters in South Carolina and beyond that the conventional wisdom about his candidacy is wrong and that he deserves a second look.
His most recent appearances in South Carolina have shown an entirely different candidate than the one who appeared unfocused and low key during the first three months of his campaign. He has now found his mission; that the campaign is for the heart and soul of the Republican party and the future of the old Reagan coalition. When speaking in this vein, the candidate exudes a passion that may have been lacking in his earlier campaign stops. It carries over into his contrasting the records of his opponents with his own as he hammers away at their lack of true conservative credentials. He still talks specifics and issues but in a way that delineates his positions from those of his rivals. In short, he has found the bridge between a way to campaign effectively without sacrificing his belief that the voters hunger for substance in their candidate.
Thompson still pauses and thinks before he answers questions either from the media or voters. He speaks in complete sentences. He treats voters like “adults” as ABC mentioned above. In this sense, he is the anti-soundbite candidate. Whether Thompson’s no-nonsense approach to campaigning will give him victory will depend largely on whether voters are moved to support a man who views running for president not as the fulfillment of raw ambition but as a chance to serve the people.
As you listen to this, notice that Rush is not talking about polls, is not talking about “electability”, is not talking about this article or that article or “popularity”. No, he is talking about ISSUES and Conservative PRINCIPLES. Something people supposedly stand for in this country. But apparently, they only stand on principle when it is easy and not when it is the right thing to do.
Quite a shame.
But this is why I choose to listen to Rush and ignore the pundits and fair weather conservatives.
Despite the mantra of the mass media, some political pundits and some bloggers, the evangelicals are not a voting bloc which votes blindly to support a certain political party or person. While I don’t support Mike Huckabee at all, I was a bit annoyed by all the “Iowans are idiots” or “Evangelicals are morons” talk coming out of Mike Huckabee’s win in the Iowa caucus and his rise to frontrunner status in the national polls among Republicans. Unfortunately, our society likes to do this: denigrate an entire group of people based on the actions of a few.
There was only a small percentage of Iowans who even bothered to vote in the Iowa Primary, yet people still decided to say that all Iowans were “stupid”, because a few thousand of them voted for Mike Huckabee and Barack Obama? Also, Mike Huckabee did not even get the majority of the evangelical vote in Iowa. He earned a higher percentage than any other candidate, sure, but they all did not vote for him. So the contempt shown by people across the country for certain groups, based on small amounts voting, is purely ridiculous.
In that vain, here is a post by “I Pity the Fool!”, an admitted evangelical, who states his reasons for not supporting Mike Huckabee: An Evangelical’s Explanation of Why He Doesn’t Support Huckabee
It has come to my attention through various conversations over the past few months that there is a general belief among the Republican (conservative) faithful that in order for someone to beat Hillary/Obama we must be moderate. A truly conservative candidate would be nice, they say, but this is just not reality. My friend told me just last night that former Senator Fred Thompson (R-Tenn) would be nice but in order for the GOP nominee to win he must be closer to “moderate.” The logic here is “be more like them in order to beat them.” This logic is such that I must respectfully disagree. The Republican nominee that goes with the if-you-can’t-beat-’em-join-’em routine will be soundly defeated. Here’s why: If you don’t differentiate yourself from your opponent the American people will have no reason not to vote for your opponent. After all, if many positions are the same then one only has two things to work from: 1. Your personality and 2. Whoever has had this position the longest. Either way is bad.
The former Governor Mike Huckabee is just such a moderate candidate. If nominated, I firmly believe (if his record is exposed) that he will be soundly defeated as the swing voters will just stick with the Democratic nominee. As the title of this blog entry indicated I can be classified as an “evangelical Christian,” one of the more powerful voting blocs in the nation at this point. I am ashamed to say that we have been fooled by Huckabee. [ … ]
Go there to read the rest.
Here are a few comments I left there:
“Finally, I do not support Mike Huckabee due to his attempted manipulation of the American voting bloc known as evangelical Christians. “Vote for me–I’m Baptist” is hardly convincing to me.”
Bingo. Aside from all the policy issues on which I disagree with Mike Huckabee, his identity politics and using religion as a weapon in this race has been the biggest turnoff for me with him.
I’m supporting Fred Thompson as well and have been supporting him for months now, after I determined he was the only conservative in the field other than Duncan Hunter and Ron Paul. Unfortunately, Ron Paul’s white supremacist and isolationist positions eliminate him from consideration for me. He just does not understand foreign policy at all. His latest comments on the Iranian incident clinched it. Apparently he knows about Gulf of Tonkin, but has no memory of the more recent USS Cole incident.
Hopefully, conservatives will come to their senses in the coming weeks and vote how one should vote – on principle – instead of based on “elecatability”. The Left and the Democrats used that tactic in 2004 with John Kerry and were ridiculed by Republicans. Unfortunately, it seems like many Republicans are now using the same tactic. Instead of talking about policies and principles, Republican voters are talking about “electability”. Funny how 3 years has turned Republicans voters into Democrat voters, huh?
Posted by Michael in MI (Thompson ’08) on Sunday, January 13, 2008 at 4:26 PM
” Would he be better than Hilary or Obama? Absolutely.”
One more thing… I disagree with this statement. Mike Huckabee is basically a Democrat who is anti-abortion. I don’t call him pro-life, because he has accepted donations from embryonic stem cell research groups. So he is not very principled. The only thing he really has going for him is his charm. However, Bill Clinton had charm too. That is not what makes a good President.
You allude to Jimmy Carter, which is spot on. The only difference I see between Mike Huckabee and Jimmy Carter is that Jimmy Carter was a Democrat and Mike Huckabee is a Republican. Jimmy Carter made the Democrat Party look bad with his weakness and we then had 12 years of Republicans in the White House. Mike Huckabee would have the same effect, only having people entirely lose faith in the Republican Party. As such, I believe Mike Huckabee would be worse than Hillary or Obama in office. 4 years of them and we might have the country wake up to realize that conservatism is better for America than socialism. But 4 years of Mike Huckabee in office might turn off the entire country to both conservatism and the Republican Party.
Something I hope people think about.
Posted by Michael in MI (Thompson ’08) on Sunday, January 13, 2008 at 4:31 PM
The more people get to know Fred Thompson, the more they like him.
Curt at Flopping Aces notes the “surge” of support for Fred Thompson in South Carolina: Fredmentum! Catch the Fevah!
THE NEW YORK TIMES reports that Fred Thompson is surging in South Carolina. And I just got an email from a journalist who says that crowds at Thompson events are suddenly over-capacity. Is it a tipping point for Thompson, or just a blip? Stay tuned.
As Curt notes, one of the best ways to support Fred Thompson, outside of getting out the word about him and his policies, is to donate to his campaign. He has had great success in raising money over the past week and continues to see his donations come in.
One last thing… I remain true to my point that people should not vote for someone based on “momentum” or “popularity” or “electability”. Research the candidates and vote for them based on whether or not you agree with their positions on policies. However, for those of you who have already stated that you want to vote for Fred Thompson, but have reservations based on “momentum”, “popularity” and “electability”, this post is for you.
[Cross-posted at my MySpace Blog]