April 15, 2007

A Winning Ticket?

Hatched by Dafydd

Over on my favorite blog, Scott Johnson takes a break from profiling third-oboeists in Pennsylvania Dutch oompah bands ca. 1911-1923 to enthuse about a possible Fred Thompson candidacy. His post got me speculating: I'm starting to think that a Thompson-Romney ticket might be a winning combination.

First, let's note that Thompson is 5 years older than Romney (65 vs. 60); thus, Romney saves a little face, since he can say that his time will still come.

And he may be right about that: In 2008, he will be 61; if Thompson serves two terms, then Romney could run as a former governor and sitting VP at age 69 -- not a bad presidential age at all, these days. (In November 2008, Sen. John McCain will be 72.)

If Thompson turns out to be authentically conservative, much of that good feeling among conservatives will spill over to his vice president, which would file off some of the rough edges of Romney's supposed "flip flops." And one or two terms seasoning as VP will surely help people over their morbid fear of a Mormon in the White House.

Thompson's only service in elective office is eight years as a U.S. senator; but he also served as a senior legislative aide to Republican Sen. Howard Baker, and in fact was the chief Republican counsel during the Watergate hearings.

In this wacky election, where the most senior administrator running on either side is a former mayor (New York city has a third again as many residents as Mitt Romney's entire state of Massachusetts), and where the Democratic front runners are a one-term senator, a 0.67-term senator, and a candidate whose primary claim to fame is that she used to be First Lady... I don't reckon anyone will question Thompson's experience -- at least, not in the general election.

Thompson is Tennessee's favorite son -- more even than Al Gore! -- and I can't see anyone, not even John Edwards, taking a single Southern state away from him. In fact, I think he would do at least as well as President Bush did in 2004, and that is self-evidently enough to win.

But I think the addition of Mitt Romney on the ticket could really shake up the race... as I think it will throw "America's lumbar" up for grabs: I refer to the Great Lake states of Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, and even Pennsylvania, each of which went for Sen. John Kerry in 2004 by an incredibly narrow margin.

I think Romney can help with all four states; while he is a conservative, he is neither as brash nor as "folksy" as Fred Thompson. He's more of an "educated elitist" and of the political class, which might sooth the jangled nerves of Upper-Midwesterners and Midlanticers wary of another Southerner in la Casa Blanca. And of course for Michigan, there is also the memory of Romney's father, George W. Romney -- former chairman of American Motors and popular three-term governor.

Those four states boast 58 electoral votes between them, and taking even one or two of them could render the election of a Democrat completely impossible.

I'm not predicting anything, and I don't even know if Romney would accept being Number Two. But I'm just saying...

Hatched by Dafydd on this day, April 15, 2007, at the time of 6:40 AM

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The following hissed in response by: soccerdad

Romney has raised the most money among Republicans by a longshot. He'll be the nominee.

The above hissed in response by: soccerdad [TypeKey Profile Page] at April 15, 2007 8:36 AM

The following hissed in response by: charlotte

I'm liking the prospect of a Thompson candidacy. All the folk I like like him :)

James Woods for VP!

The above hissed in response by: charlotte [TypeKey Profile Page] at April 15, 2007 9:25 AM

The following hissed in response by: AMR

While I really, really dislike having the political season start this early, I believe that Mr. Romney would make a good VP for Mr. Thompson or the others. I do like Mr. Thompson and even more so after his off-the-cuff interview with Steve Hayes reported at http://www.weeklystandard.com/Content/Public/Articles/000/000/013/528aylls.asp? My major problem with any candidate is that post-911, I want someone who has faced a real crisis requiring life or death decisions so we can hopefully anticipate how he/she would act in a national emergency. Outside of having that experience and how they handled it, I would need some other indicator to judge the candidates. What that would be though eludes me.

The next attack in the US or on our overseas facilities may be by WMD and many of the options available will make Katrina look minor in comparison. As in indication of our enemy’s intent and willingness to use prohibited weapons, non-militarized chlorine gas is now being used by the al Qaeda in Iraq. To start with, after a WMD attack, decisions will have to be made to save the most people as is reasonably possible. That is not something I would want to have to decide; who dies, who lives. The closest reported situation Mr. Thompson has faced was the death of his adult daughter. This resulted in his personal devastated and his decision not to run for reelection as senator, although he did remain in office and performed well until the end of his term in office. I can’t fault him for not running for reelection, but it was a crisis in his life that some could say demonstrates his reaction to a crisis. However, being a senator is obviously not even close to having the responsibilities of being president and one can be easily forgiven for deciding to not pursue reelection for personal reasons. I have not decided if that time in his life is important for judging his presidential capabilities. There are 9 months before the primaries to make that judgment call.

The above hissed in response by: AMR [TypeKey Profile Page] at April 15, 2007 2:50 PM

The following hissed in response by: Alear

President Cheney. It'll cure what ails us.

The above hissed in response by: Alear [TypeKey Profile Page] at April 15, 2007 4:05 PM

The following hissed in response by: Hal

Dafyyd, what about Tommy Thompson? I've heard that he's considering a run of it. What's your take on his (supposed) candidacy? What about a Thompson'n'Thompson ticket?

The above hissed in response by: Hal [TypeKey Profile Page] at April 15, 2007 4:52 PM

The following hissed in response by: Mr. Michael

Hmmm... that would make TWO presidential candidates who were staffers during the Watergate Hearings... Hillary was staffing for the House Committee of the Judiciary during that mess.

Now, if we can only figure out a way for Hillary to get Harry Reid as her VP candidate, our Mormon dance card would be full... but no, my silly is working too much overtime.

I think that Mitt would go over big with the Republican base, and I'll grant you his proven abilty to schmooz the city-folk. But I just don't know if a ticket with two strong Reagan Republicans can make it past the Republican power brokers. They seem to think that if you have a strong Conservative, you have to match them with a Middling one. The only reason we got Cheney is because everybody (then) recognized that W was not that much of a conservative: Cheney was put on the ticket to help build up enough interest to get the Right to come along with any gusto.

The above hissed in response by: Mr. Michael [TypeKey Profile Page] at April 15, 2007 9:05 PM

The following hissed in response by: Towering Barbarian

President Cheney sounds like a good idea but actually, I think a ticket consisting of President Rumsfeld/VP Michelle Malkin or a President Condi Rice/Vice President Jeb Bush might be fun to send out. I figure a combination like one of those might be the best way to cause liberal faces to turn purple as their voices become squeeky. ^_~

The above hissed in response by: Towering Barbarian [TypeKey Profile Page] at April 15, 2007 10:38 PM

The following hissed in response by: Dafydd ab Hugh

Mr. Michael:

But I just don't know if a ticket with two strong Reagan Republicans can make it past the Republican power brokers.

I think the Republican (and Democratic) "power brokers" are going to be as disempowered as everyone else; something on the order of 70% of the electorate is going to vote on or about February 5th next year in the soi-disant "SUPER Super Tuesday." There won't be any time to broker power!

America goes "all-in" on practically the first hand. This is going to be wicked...


The above hissed in response by: Dafydd ab Hugh [TypeKey Profile Page] at April 16, 2007 2:57 AM

The following hissed in response by: Freedom Fighter

Hi Y'all!
I mean no disrespect,and certainly don't want to burst anyone's bubble, but I think that the hoopla over Fred Thompson may be a bit - ummm - premature.

For one thing, he hasn't even committed to running yet, and for another, while I'm sure he's not evil, there are a number of things in his background that provide food for thought.

Thompson's primary career before being appointed to finish out Al Gore's senate term was as a lobbyist. Among his other accomplishments was his successful pushing of the Garn-St Germain Depository Institutions Act of 1982, which is widely credited for laying the groundwork for the S&L debacle of the 1980's.

He also put in time as a registered foreign agent for the DC firm Arent Fox Kintner Plotkin & Kahn.

While in the Senate, he chaired the Committee for governmental affairs that was supposed to investigate the Clinton Administration's peddling military technology and trade agreements to China through Loral in exchange for campaign cash..and people who label themselves as conservative might be interested to know that not only did he support McCain's campaign for president but was a strong backer of McCain-Feingold.

None of this is, perhaps major in itself, but taken in the aggregate, it's questionable when Thompson is being labeled as a conservative icon.

As for Mitt Romney, again, no disrespect but he is a Northeastern governor who was able to accomplish very little in Blue Massachusetts..and he wouldn't even be able to carry his own state ( or Michigan) in an election.

Another factor,and one that needs to be considered is the damage done to the electorate's perception of the brand name `conservative Republican' by President Bush and certain members of a GOP majority congress over the last few years.

There are also certain historical factors to consider.

I certainly don't want to see a Clinton-Obama administration in the White House, but I doubt Fred Thompson or Mitt Romney are the way to go.

I'll have more on this over at my place later, if anyone's interested.


The above hissed in response by: Freedom Fighter [TypeKey Profile Page] at April 17, 2007 10:51 AM

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