Skip to comments.How conservative is Fred Thompson?
Posted on 06/23/2007 7:19:15 AM PDT by etradervic
After John East, a stalwart conservative from North Carolina, entered the U.S. Senate in 1981, wags began referring to Jesse Helms as "the liberal senator from the Tar Heel state." We are reminded of this tale as Republican activists rush to encourage, if not yet fully embrace, the presidential candidacy of Fred Thompson, the former senator from Tennessee. The Republican base is evidently unimpressed or uninspired (or both) by the conservative credentials of the top three Republicans (John McCain, Mitt Romney and Rudy Giuliani) seeking the 2008 presidential nomination. Mr. Thompson's most-oft-cited conservative credential is his 86.1 percent lifetime (1995-2002) Senate vote rating compiled by the American Conservative Union (ACU), the organization that many rightly consider a leading arbiter of conservatism. In the same relative sense that Mr. Helms could be considered North Carolina's "liberal senator," Mr. Thompson's ACU rating would qualify him to be "the liberal senator from Tennessee" during his eight-year stint. Bill Frist, who defeated Democratic incumbent Jim Sasser, was elected to the Senate from Tennessee the same year (1994) as Mr. Thompson, who won the seat vacated in 1993 by then-Vice President Gore. During the eight years they represented Tennessee together, Mr. Frist compiled an ACU rating of 89.3 percent, making Mr. Thompson "the liberal senator from the Volunteer state."
(Excerpt) Read more at washingtontimes.com ...
He’s said (I believe on a Fox News interview) that there are parts of the bill that he still likes and others that he is not happy with.
Fred has mentioned recently that CFR is not working as he hoped and he favors scrapping parts of the bill.
We will be hearing from Fred on CFR soon.
After he announces within the next few weeks- all these questions will be fair game- as he well understands.
He even pushed through McCain's assault on the first amendment. It's the only truly significant (as in "having an impact") thing he accomplished in ten undistinguished years as a senator.
He says he's sorry now.
I feel a LOT better now that's he's expressed regret. / sarc
No kidding. I guess that Hillary can just say she is sorry for the things she believes and FREEPERS will welcome her with open arms as our candidate. Duncan Hunter is the only conservative candidate that should be President.
Disgruntled Willardian gnats PING!
Anti-Fred FUD ping.
Having Mary Matalin on board doesn’t make feel all warm and fuzzy about Thompson. I equate Matalin with Bush the Elder’s failed moderate policies, not to mention that she sleeps and has spawned with the enemy.
Somewhere between Rootie and McQueeg.
Now now...lol! The top three are so bad that I personally have to give serious consideration to Thompson. I won’t vote for Rudy McRomney.
He’s said it hasn’t turned out the way he thought and lot’s of it need to be scrapped. No one’s perfect but he’s head and shoulders about Rudy McRomney.
ACU tracks a wide variety of issues before Congress, ranging from taxes to spending and national security to abortion. Accordingly, our ratings encompass three general categories: (1) economic and budget matters; (2) social and cultural issues, and (3) defense and foreign policy. ACU endeavors to analyze votes from each category in order to obtain a balanced, comprehensive picture of an individual member's ideological predisposition based upon recorded records.So if a member of Congress votes no on an issue because that member realizes the issue is none of the federal government's business per the Framers, the ACU would mark that a 'liberal' position even when it's not.
Each member of the House and Senate is rated on a scale of 0 to 100.
The purpose of the "Rating" is to inform the public, in as unbiased a method as possible, exactly where individual Senators and Members of the House stand on the ideological spectrum from liberal to conservative.
This is such inside baseball. McCain Feingold was and is bad law. It does abridge free speech and FDT concedes that it has not worked. That said, the main people who are angry about it are: a) inside the beltway; and b) employed by advocacy groups whether of the left or right and thus have a financial interest and personal pecuniary ax to grind in opposing it.
Most people do not care much about it. FDT concedes that it was a mistake, but he saw politics awash in money and was trying to do something about it. End of story.
As far as the ratings, these things are compiled by groups like the ACU and the ACLU that have agendas too and ways of ranking votes. For example, FDT’s vote against some forms of Federal tort reform would be characterized as liberal by the Chamber of Commerce and probably the ACU. It is instead a principled conservative vote based on the idea that the states are best positioned to enact their own tort reform, both legislatively and through the selection of conservative state Supreme Courts. (I have heard Fred on this point and he is both eloquent on it and quite correct).
The bottom line, if you are looking for a conservative is not to cherry pick one or two votes a legislator has cast, but to look for a salient philosophy. FDT is: 1) the strongest federalist at least since Reagan, and perhaps more committed to federalism than the Gipper; and 2) Very much in favor of slashing the power and spending of the federal government. He is committed to overturning Roe, so he passes this litmus test of most of us in the GOP. In short, what is not to like about the man?
Fred’s overall record is very strong and conservative. And he’s the only Conservative with a real chance at winning. I like Duncan Hunter and would gladly elect him if he had a chance, he doesn’t. Fred’s strong stance on the 2nd Amendment alone should get him elected over any of the three of Rudy McRomney.
IMMIGRATION PROFILE OF SEN. FRED THOMPSON:
Voted to grant amnesty to close to one million illegal aliens from Nicaragua and Cuba in 1997
Voted in 1996 to continue chain migration
Voted in favor of chain migration in 1996
Voted to allow firms to lay off Americans to make room for foreign workers in 1998
In 1996, removed higher fines for businesses which hire illegal aliens
Tried to kill voluntary pilot programs for workplace verification in 1996
Thompson in favor of Amnesty as long as its not easy
In a recent appearance on the program Hannity and Colmes, Fred Dalton Thompson stated very clearly that getting the Illegal Alien Trespassers out of the country is not gonna happen and that the solution is to work out a deal where they can have some aspirations of citizenship but that we shouldnt make it easy so that it is not unfair to the other Aliens waiting to get in. Pro Amnesty Fred?
An excellent post. I agree completely.
And Romney introduces Hillary care to Mass., flipped on abortion and welcomes an assault wapons ban. McCain authored the McCain Feingold bill and supports amnesty. Giuliani-—well, the list is too long and discouraging. You can root for Tancredo or Hunter but so far they haven’t broken into the top tier. Given the choices, Fred seems to be the best bet.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.