Thompson tries to sound Reganesque

050507thompson.jpgEvoking the legacy of Ronald Reagan, potential presidential candidate Fred Thompson told fellow Republicans that smaller government and lower taxes are the way to a prosperous future.

The former Tennessee senator and "Law & Order" star spoke for about 35 minutes Friday night to the Lincoln Club of Orange County, sketching a broad agenda that hewed to Reaganesque themes — a strong military, a limited federal government and robust free markets.

Thompson also warned that people in the United States must be prepared to sacrifice in a world threatened by terrorism and hostile governments.

"Every generation has made sure that it did its part to make sure that it did endure, with the sacrifices they made. And now it’s our turn," Thompson said.

Thompson did not directly mention the 2008 White House race during his remarks, which came a day after the first televised debate among 10 rivals for the party nomination.

Like the leading Republican contenders, Thompson argued against leaving Iraq unless stability is restored. He noted that even when the U.S. leaves Iraq, the world still will be full of danger.

"We’ve inherited a world that is watching the attempted marriage between radical Islamic fundamentalism and nuclear technology," Thompson said.

Recent polls show that many Republicans are uneasy with the emerging field, and Thompson is being watched for signs he might run by "people who do not see Reagan in the current crop of candidates," former state party chairman Duf Sundheim said.

Claremont McKenna College political scientist John Pitney said Thompson’s entry into the race could help energize Republicans — particularly conservatives uneasy with the candidates. Polls have suggested he would be a competitive candidate.

"Two things excite people — passion for an issue and the prospect of winning. Both of those things seem to be absent from the current field," Pitney said.

Copyright © 2007 The Associated Press


  1. Sandy Price

    When I first met Ronald Reagan in 1964 he was pro-choice all the way and wanted individual freedoms for everyone. In his second term he turn pro-life to the shock of the GOP. Will Thompson be the same way?

    I’m tired of two-faced Conservatives and may have to continue to vote LP from now on. Can I trust the Democrats? I need serious help here.

  2. Carl Nemo

    I surely hope Americans haven’t become so “chicken-headed” that they believe because Thompson stars on a show named “Law and Order” that it represents some deep reflection of his personal values. I advise people to do some serious research looking for “the good, the bad, and the ugly” concerning this candidate. I’m personally tired of looking at old, haggard, worn-out, possibly ill, white men running for office. Hey, Obama’s running, how about a wealthy Chinese, Japanese, Hispanic, or Native American to come forward and run. I’m convinced with the bunch that’s currently running, that we could do far better by simply standing on a streetcorner anywhere USA and simply saying “hey you…! you wanna run for President?!”… :)) Maybe it’s time via the www, Americans come up with a consensus for a solid “write-in” candidate then on election day at the booths or via our mail-in ballot we simply write-in their name and voila we have selected who “we the people” want and not who the NWO/MIC/AIPAC crowd has pre-selected for us. It’s called an “end run” folks. I think it’s an idea who’s time has come. Screw them and their white-bread, canned conventions that facilitates “their” selection process…!
    Carl Nemo **==

  3. Rick Fuller

    We don’t need another actor to “play” the role of POTUS. I was in high school for the first term of Mr. Regan and in college for his second term. Eight years of Ronald Regan was pretty gross.

    * Record deficits

    * High interest rates

    * Secret deals: Hostages in Iran, Iran-Contra

    * Meddling Government: Abortion, Gay Rights

    No thank you. I not interested in another “conservative actor” for President. I’m surprised Clint Eastwood isn’t running.

    Something ironic however. You know how conservatives are always labeling Hollywood “librul”? Well look at Ronald Reagan – he was from Hollywood! And, now, Fred Thompson!

  4. Carl Nemo

    Ah, Reagan’s sins well-enumerated! Thanks Rick Fuller for laying out a public list. Btw we can add “union-busting” too. Gee, if I recall Reagan was once head of the Actors Guild?! Hmmm…I guess he was nothing but a 5th columnist even in his acting days waiting for an opportunity to show his true colors with the Air Traffic Controllers Union strike concerning his real sentiments about unions and unionizing… :)) Thanks for your spot-on post…Carl Nemo

  5. Ardie

    Bush is not that far out of step with Ronald Reagan’s idiotic conservatism. There is a good case to be made that Bush has taken Ronald Reagan’s vision to its logical extreme, including the war in Iraq. (Remember that in 1983, Reagan invaded Grenada. It was a fiasco, too. It was totally unnecessary. In fact, Reagan had invaded part of the United Kingdom!)

    Despite all of his rhetoric, Reagan shied away from the libertarian views of government; that government should be less. Like most conservatives, including Bush, when he felt that he had attained the lofty, almost God like position of moral certitude, Reagan was not adverse to using government to push his ideological agenda, which is exactly what Bush is doing. One notable example, Bush’s uses the DOJ to further his extremist conservative ideology.
    With regard to the economy Reagan’s simplistic view of it produced massive deficits. He couldn’t comprehend that the tax cut program had a direct relationship to tax revenues. Bush’s economy is no different. Both give ear to supply-side economics. This theory states that if people have more after taxes they will spend more. Supply-side economics has never been proven. It is just an assertion. In fact, the evidence would indicate otherwise, viz., that the more people have after taxes the more they tend to invest, rather than spend. Conservatism is a dead dog.
  6. Bill Jonke

    On TV: I’ve all but given up on the tube these days, with the drivel and the media hype. In its place, I’ve opted for Film Noir and other old movies on DVD. That, and the fact that we’ve now been “Law and Ordered” to death with countless different mutations of it, I haven’t the slightest idea who Fred Thompson is. I don’t watch TV much anymore.

    Therefore, Thompson wouldn’t get my vote for anything. Being an actor does not step up his qualifications at all, whether he plays a district attorney or Clowny on the Bozo Show, or some such idiocy.

    I’m sure there are people out there who more or less believe he’s actually what his character portrays, and that’s what gets us into trouble.

    Hell, I’ve always liked Sam Watterston in Law and Order, as an actor, but when he endorses an investment firm, I’m not going to let his charisma as a lawyer “character” sway me to invest with the advertiser.

    Wake up, America! Wipe away the glitter; it’s just a bright and shiny smokescreen, complete with silver and gold flecks!

    Bill Jonke