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Fred Thompson's "mistake" (Kathleen Parker)
Townhall ^ | September 7, 2007 | Kathleen Parker

Posted on 09/07/2007 1:38:39 AM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet

In a stunning move that caught no one by surprise, Fred Thompson announced that ... he's ... running ... for ... president.

Time to step up to the plate, he said.

And everybody hit their snooze buttons.

That Thompson is running for the highest office was a foregone anti-climax after months of testing, consulting, pondering, considering and, most important, letting the other candidates spend their money and exhaust Americans' interest with endless debates in which little new is said or learned.

The debates have become so boilerplate, in fact, that Thompson himself became one of the topics at Wednesday's forum in New Hampshire. Where was Fred?

Fred was chatting it up with Jay Leno on "The Tonight Show" set, where he made his formal announcement. The other Republican candidates, doubtless weary from the previous 200 debates, took turns taking shots at Thompson.

Rudy Giuliani got off the best line, saying that he likes Thompson and thinks he's done a "pretty good job of playing my part on 'Law & Order.' I personally prefer the real thing."

The unflappable Thompson was in character when Leno asked him what he thought of the criticism. "It's a lot more difficult to get on 'The Tonight Show' than it is to get into a presidential debate," he deadpanned.

Despite criticism that Thompson played the Hollywood card by going on Leno's show, he was able to make some serious points about Iraq (stay until the country is stable), and complete his thoughts in paragraphs without interruption.

On important matters, Thompson is as serious as the DA he plays on television. And just as direct, as when he described Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad as "a fellow who is not put together well upstairs running the country." As president, Thompson might have to be more diplomatic, but such frank talk is refreshing when most public figures are measuring their words with espresso spoons.

Thompson prompted applause when he answered Leno's question about why the U.S. isn't more popular with other countries. "What are we doing wrong?" Leno asked.

Powerful countries tend to attract envy and resentment, Thompson began. That's the price of being the biggest, strongest nation in the world. A 6-foot-6 man like Thompson might know something about that. But then he shifted focus from what we've done wrong to what we've done right:

"Our people have shed more blood for the liberty and freedom of other peoples ... than all the other countries put together. (Applause.) And I don't feel any need to apologize for the United States of America."

There's still much to know about this latest addition to the White House race, but as first impressions go, Thompson has at least two things going for him: He's utterly lacking in hubris -- or so it seems -- and he can communicate. If presidents are elected in reaction to the previous officeholder, that's a strong hand.

It is also impossible to picture Thompson as a cheerleader.

Whether he can get nominated is another question, but he already holds the No. 2 slot in the polls behind Giuliani. On the Internet, Thompson's Web site (ImWithFred) had the most unique visitors in July among the Republican candidates, according to a new Nielsen report. Barack Obama leads all the candidates in Web traffic.

Whatever happens next, Thompson at least gave commentators something new to talk about. Was it a mistake to go on Leno instead of the debate, they wondered? And, did he sign on too late, they speculated? Is he a team player?

Thompson must have chuckled all the way to Iowa. Too late for what? Most Americans still don't know who's running and don't share the punditry's obsession with quantifying who's up and who's down every 24-hour cycle. If they're watching television, they're more likely watching Leno, who averaged 5.9 million viewers in 2006, instead of the presidential debates, which tend to draw between 1 million and 2 million viewers, according to Variety.

By setting himself apart from the gaggle and having a one-on-one chat with 6 million Americans, Thompson messed up the political ecosystem. In a single well-timed appearance, he made up for a late start and got exposure and buzz. And it didn't cost him a dime.

Some mistake.


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Culture/Society; Editorial; Foreign Affairs; Politics/Elections; US: California; US: Tennessee; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: conservatives; electionpresident; elections; fredthompson; gop; gopdebates; iraq; jayleno; kathleenparker; lawandordercandidate; nh2008; republicans
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Good analysis by Ms. Parker.

I loved Fred's line: "Our people have shed more blood for the liberty and freedom of other peoples ... than all the other countries put together. (Applause.) And I don't feel any need to apologize for the United States of America." Needs to be repeated again and again!!

1 posted on 09/07/2007 1:38:50 AM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Fred has some good qualities, but he does get a few questions he needs to answer. McCain-Feingold being one of them.


2 posted on 09/07/2007 1:49:24 AM PDT by GeronL
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To: GeronL

Already answered, months ago.


3 posted on 09/07/2007 1:52:25 AM PDT by Spktyr (Overwhelmingly superior firepower and the willingness to use it is the only proven peace solution.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
And I don't feel any need to apologize for the United States of America."

If we have any chance in 2008, it's because of this sentiment.

Democrats DO NOT GET IT--Americans don't want to vote for someone who doesn't make them feel good about BEING an American. The Dems live in an echo chamber created by their fellow liberals in the media--all they hear 24-7 is "Yes, you're right!" from their handlers, staff and media folks whose job SHOULD be to hold their feet to the fire.

Democrats despise this country for what it IS but love what in their minds they think it COULD be--"Compassionate Socialism" or "Socialism with a human face."

They simply don't understand that when Americans sense you're not telling us what you REALLY think, there's something there they can't put their fingers on but they don't like you.

When they see Thompson they don't see a "My country right or wrong" type of robot, they see someone who says "Of course we haven't always gotten it right--who does?--but damnit, we do pretty damn good, and I LOVE this country for always trying, no matter what everyone else may think of us."

That attitude may give us the edge.

4 posted on 09/07/2007 1:52:45 AM PDT by Darkwolf377 (Fred's here, the rest of the also-rans can go home now. =))
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To: Spktyr

but nobody was paying attention, according to this article =o)


5 posted on 09/07/2007 1:57:50 AM PDT by GeronL
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Fred forgot to mention the real reason people all over the world hate the United States is because of HOLLYWOOD’S POTRAYAL AND BETRAYAL OF ALL THINGS GOOD AND DECENT in America.
6 posted on 09/07/2007 1:58:14 AM PDT by OKIEDOC (Kalifornia, a red state wannabe. I don't take Ex Lax I just read the New York Times.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Although ImWithFred.com does work, the really website is http://www.Fred08.com

The first sends you to the second

7 posted on 09/07/2007 2:28:02 AM PDT by Military family member (GO Colts!!)
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To: Darkwolf377
I recall an article in a liberal rag (Utne Reader) on using the flag to generate sympathy for their cause. Flash to illegal alien protests where they have US flags for media props.
8 posted on 09/07/2007 2:35:29 AM PDT by endthematrix (He was shouting 'Allah!' but I didn't hear that. It just sounded like a lot of crap to me.)
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To: GeronL

Fred’s already explained his vote on McCain/Feingold, said it was a mistake he regretted and apologized. Read his essays on Townhall.com, go way back. He’s very candid on a lot of subjects. One thing you don’t get from Fred is nuance. He’s a federalist at heart.


9 posted on 09/07/2007 2:42:07 AM PDT by hershey
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To: endthematrix

Oh, that was the best—one weekend they had nothing but Mexican flags, and then a couple weeks later they had some US ones. Real cute. I don’t think anyone was fooled, though.


10 posted on 09/07/2007 2:45:52 AM PDT by Darkwolf377 (Fred's here, the rest of the also-rans can go home now. =))
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
>>>I loved Fred's line: "Our people have shed more blood for the liberty and freedom of other peoples ... than all the other countries put together.

I love that line too. I believe I heard it here first though:

Duncan Hunter: (snip) This country has lost 619 thousand Americans on the battlefields around the world in the last 100 years making the world safe.

11 posted on 09/07/2007 2:56:49 AM PDT by Calpernia (Hunters Rangers - Raising the Bar of Integrity http://www.barofintegrity.us)
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To: GeronL

Including, apparently, you.


12 posted on 09/07/2007 3:03:06 AM PDT by ExGeeEye (I've been waiting since 11/04/79 to do something about Iran.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
The primary season has been extended to benefit Hillary! Rodham (Clinton). She, alone, stands to benefit from the extended process. She, alone, has the money and fund-raising ability to finance the long process. She, alone, has universal name recognition and murderously high negatives that can only be reduced by wearing people down and with the passage of time.

Of all the candidates, every single one of them allowed himself to be buffaloed into declaring way before he intended to, except for Fred Thompson. Which is one good reason for supporting Fred Thompson.

Could you imagine how differntly things would have turned out if Rudy, McCain, Romney et al had the guts to tell Hillary! Rodham (Clinton) to go to Hell, and that they were going to announce their candidacies in the Fall of 2007, as Thompson just did? We would have had the spectacle of the Democrats all tearing each other apart on a daily basis, spending money and driving each other's numbers down, and the 'Pubbies would have been sitting pretty on a pile of money, tanned, rested and ready.

Instead, because of their own weakness, Rudy, McCain, Romney, et al allowed themselves to be bullied into abandoning all their plans and pulled into this extended primary season, and have given up the GOP's great advantage.

13 posted on 09/07/2007 3:11:21 AM PDT by gridlock (I don't support Hillary Clinton because I am afraid of strong women.)
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To: gridlock
Instead, because of their own weakness, Rudy, McCain, Romney, et al allowed themselves to be bullied into abandoning all their plans and pulled into this extended primary season, and have given up the GOP's great advantage.

Rudy can pretend to be strong, but in the first big decision of his campaign, when to announce, he allowed himself to be backed into a corner by Hillary!.

McCain can pretend to be a great military thinker, but has allowed himself to be drawn into a fight he didn't have to fight, and is standing in the middle of the fray, instead of backing off and letting our enemies destroy each other.

Romney can pretend to be a great tactician and political mind, but he failed to see the possibilities of sticking to his plan and standing up for the traditional electoral process.

14 posted on 09/07/2007 3:19:46 AM PDT by gridlock (I don't support Hillary Clinton because I am afraid of strong women.)
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To: Darkwolf377

“Democrats despise this country for what it IS but love what in their minds they think it COULD be—”Compassionate Socialism” or “Socialism with a human face.” “

Democrats couldn’t care any less about passionate socialism. They don’t care about minorities, retirement, healthcare, AIDS prevention, hunger, homelessness or any other social issue.

Democrats care about one and one thing only. Having power. They have turned into Stalinists who are trying to create a two class society and they are doing it by trying to wipe out the middle class. This has been their MO for years.

Remember the template. If they say they care about something deeply, they will do everything in their power to first destroy it, then blame their opponents, then legislate it to bankruptcy, with their attorneys getting all the proceeds.


15 posted on 09/07/2007 4:02:13 AM PDT by EQAndyBuzz (When O'Reilly comes out from under his desk, tell him to give me a call. Hunter/Thompson in 08.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Bump!

http://Vets4Fred.net

http://FredForPresident.com

16 posted on 09/07/2007 4:18:42 AM PDT by W04Man (I'm Now With Fred http://Vets4Fred.net)
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To: GeronL
Also, when in the GOP-controlled Senate, being so easily rolled by Senator John Glenn regarding the alledged "influence" of the Chineses in the Klinton administration.
17 posted on 09/07/2007 4:21:29 AM PDT by jamaksin
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To: Calpernia

So, what’s your point—if you had one?


18 posted on 09/07/2007 4:37:15 AM PDT by Clara Lou (Run, FRed, run!)
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To: Darkwolf377
Democrats DO NOT GET IT--

The Dims didn't get it in 1980 or 1984, either....

19 posted on 09/07/2007 4:40:26 AM PDT by Thermalseeker (Made in China: Treat those three words like a warning label)
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To: EQAndyBuzz

“They have turned into Stalinists who are trying to create a two class society and they are doing it by trying to wipe out the middle class.”

I think you’ve hit the nail on the head. If they assume power look for the ruling elite to exempt themselves from universal health care just like they’re exempt from the soon to be bankrupt Social Security.


20 posted on 09/07/2007 4:48:14 AM PDT by bigcat32
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Every one else started a year too early. Fred correctly viewed that as disrespectful to a sitting President.

It just like the world leaders celebrating the millennium a year early ... why?

21 posted on 09/07/2007 5:06:46 AM PDT by GingisK
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To: Clara Lou
This pretty urchin has many sharp points.

Be mindful, they can be poisonous.

22 posted on 09/07/2007 5:08:10 AM PDT by Calpernia (Hunters Rangers - Raising the Bar of Integrity http://www.barofintegrity.us)
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To: Calpernia; Clara Lou

Plaque on Ronald Reagan’s desk:

“There is no limit to what a man can do or where he can go if he doesn’t mind who gets the credit.”


23 posted on 09/07/2007 5:09:56 AM PDT by b9
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To: gridlock; All
"The primary season has been extended to benefit Hillary! Rodham (Clinton). She, alone, stands to benefit from the extended process."

You are right by half and wrong by half.

The extended primary season is/will probably benefit Hillary, but I believe it was not exactly created FOR Hillary alone.

The Dimorats have taken the lead in two things this election season - the extended primary season itself and a huge increase in the number of so-called "debates" - and the two things are related to each other. But, their purpose is that they are both related to the Dimorats main propaganda providers - the LameStreamMedia. The extended primary season in general and the well publicized and televised "debates", almost weekly, allow the Dim's friends in the LameStreamMedia the means and the cover for their free and constant play-by-play daily repetition of the Dims talking points as "news". The sheeple are induced to be mentally "in tune" with the Dim's template of "issues" and promises by their mantra-like daily repetition for more than a year before anyone votes. They and their media executive friends are "framing" the issues (reinforcing the leftist context in which the issues MUST be viewed), helping to keep the sheeple's political thinking locked in that frame (box).

The Dims and the LameStreamMedia, working together, are to the American political process the equivalent of those who - with great intelligence, insight and cunning, together with perverse goals - create suicide bombers; people who no longer can think for themselves; people who are conditioned to simply follow, like lemmings to the sea.

24 posted on 09/07/2007 5:35:57 AM PDT by Wuli
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To: Wuli
You will pardon me if I see Hillary! and the Round-Heeled Media as joined-at-the-hip.
25 posted on 09/07/2007 5:43:05 AM PDT by gridlock (I don't support Hillary Clinton because I am afraid of strong women.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet; namsman
This sums it up perfectly:

"Whatever happens next, Thompson at least gave commentators something new to talk about. Was it a mistake to go on Leno instead of the debate, they wondered? And, did he sign on too late, they speculated? Is he a team player?

Thompson must have chuckled all the way to Iowa. Too late for what? Most Americans still don't know who's running and don't share the punditry's obsession with quantifying who's up and who's down every 24-hour cycle. If they're watching television, they're more likely watching Leno, who averaged 5.9 million viewers in 2006, instead of the presidential debates, which tend to draw between 1 million and 2 million viewers, according to Variety."

26 posted on 09/07/2007 5:45:27 AM PDT by SW6906 (6 things you can't have too much of: sex, money, firewood, horsepower, guns and ammunition.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

I might be wrong, but it seems that Fred has gotten more press by NOT announcing (till Leno) than the rest have gotten by spending MILLIONS...

Seems like a plan to me.


27 posted on 09/07/2007 6:45:44 AM PDT by four more in O 4 (God Bless America. Let Freedom Reign.)
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To: GeronL

Check out www.fredthompson.cc


28 posted on 09/07/2007 7:11:29 AM PDT by mjc83930 (content coming soon - www.fredthompson.cc)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Good article by Kathleen. It’s true, most Americans aren’t watching the debates or thinking about the election now. Fred got more free attention on Jay Leno than he ever would have gotten in the completely unmemorable debate.


29 posted on 09/07/2007 7:22:22 AM PDT by blitzgig
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To: jellybean; girlangler; KoRn; Shortstop7; Lunatic Fringe; Darnright; babygene; pitbully; granite; ...
Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket


30 posted on 09/07/2007 7:44:54 AM PDT by Politicalmom (Of the potential GOP front runners, FT has one of the better records on immigration.- NumbersUSA)
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To: Calpernia

That is the stupidest thing I have ever heard.

You really think Fred Thompson is eagerly investigating Duncan Hunter’s “style” so he can also be reduced in the polls to 1%?

I bet somebody else somewhere has said that before. Hunter must have stolen it from that person.


31 posted on 09/07/2007 7:49:53 AM PDT by Politicalmom (Of the potential GOP front runners, FT has one of the better records on immigration.- NumbersUSA)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
By setting himself apart from the gaggle and having a one-on-one chat with 6 million Americans, Thompson messed up the political ecosystem. In a single well-timed appearance, he made up for a late start and got exposure and buzz. And it didn't cost him a dime.

************

Great article.

32 posted on 09/07/2007 8:20:14 AM PDT by trisham (Zen is not easy. It takes effort to attain nothingness. And then what do you have? Bupkis.)
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To: Politicalmom

>>>That is the stupidest thing I have ever heard.

What is?

>>>You really think Fred Thompson is eagerly investigating Duncan Hunter’s “style” so he can also be reduced in the polls to 1%?

Copy and paste where I said any such thing.


33 posted on 09/07/2007 8:21:19 AM PDT by Calpernia (Hunters Rangers - Raising the Bar of Integrity http://www.barofintegrity.us)
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To: Calpernia

You know why Fred’s version is better? Because he doesn’t get mired down in the minutia of exact numbers and so many meaningless details.

That’s the difference between a leader and a go-to guy that a leader hires to do a job. Duncan Hunter is a doer, not a leader. He’s a very good doer and a good man, but he’s not a president. He simply doesn’t have it in him.


34 posted on 09/07/2007 8:22:48 AM PDT by perfect_rovian_storm (John Cox 2008: Because Duncan Hunter just isn't obscure enough for me!)
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To: perfect_rovian_storm

>>>so many meaningless details.

Yes, our brave men would be meaningless to you.


35 posted on 09/07/2007 8:23:40 AM PDT by Calpernia (Hunters Rangers - Raising the Bar of Integrity http://www.barofintegrity.us)
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To: Calpernia

I didn’t see you do that, but others have put forth that (rather ridiculous) notion.


36 posted on 09/07/2007 8:23:52 AM PDT by perfect_rovian_storm (John Cox 2008: Because Duncan Hunter just isn't obscure enough for me!)
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To: Calpernia

Good Lord. You people are moonbats.


37 posted on 09/07/2007 8:24:32 AM PDT by perfect_rovian_storm (John Cox 2008: Because Duncan Hunter just isn't obscure enough for me!)
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To: perfect_rovian_storm

Then the comments should be directed appropriately.


38 posted on 09/07/2007 8:24:40 AM PDT by Calpernia (Hunters Rangers - Raising the Bar of Integrity http://www.barofintegrity.us)
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To: perfect_rovian_storm
That’s the difference between a leader and a go-to guy that a leader hires to do a job. Duncan Hunter is a doer, not a leader. He’s a very good doer and a good man, but he’s not a president. He simply doesn’t have it in him.

*************

I like Hunter, but he simply has not created the momentum he needs this time around. I don't know if he has it in him, but he has too little name-recognition for a national election at this point. I hope he runs again in eight years.

39 posted on 09/07/2007 8:26:35 AM PDT by trisham (Zen is not easy. It takes effort to attain nothingness. And then what do you have? Bupkis.)
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To: Calpernia

Well, let’s clear it up. Just what was your purpose in posting something from Duncan Hunter on a Fred Thompson thread?

Is it just that your candidate is so pathetic that you need to advertise him on Fred Thompson threads where the traffic is, or is there some other reason? Because if you were implying that Fred is imitating a candidate that is polling at .5%, we should get that out on the table now.


40 posted on 09/07/2007 8:27:12 AM PDT by perfect_rovian_storm (John Cox 2008: Because Duncan Hunter just isn't obscure enough for me!)
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To: perfect_rovian_storm

I was more focused on a lead in to post my sea urchin. Pretty, no?


41 posted on 09/07/2007 8:28:20 AM PDT by Calpernia (Hunters Rangers - Raising the Bar of Integrity http://www.barofintegrity.us)
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To: Calpernia
Yes, our brave men would be meaningless to you.

************

Unfair, and disappointing.

42 posted on 09/07/2007 8:28:47 AM PDT by trisham (Zen is not easy. It takes effort to attain nothingness. And then what do you have? Bupkis.)
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To: trisham

I honestly don’t think it’s about name recognition. I think he’s a micromanager. You can hear it every time he speaks. His battlefield scenarios are like porn to his supporters, but offer little or nothing to the public at large to support. He keeps droning on and on about the wall.

I want a guy who’s gonna get a wall built, but I start to worry when the guy’s got a hammer and nails in his hands marching down to do it himself.


43 posted on 09/07/2007 8:30:28 AM PDT by perfect_rovian_storm (John Cox 2008: Because Duncan Hunter just isn't obscure enough for me!)
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To: Darkwolf377

What do you really expect from a dem? Look at who they are......criminals/felons/welfare moms/people who can’t speak english, immigrants and superjealous/bitter people who would rather see the USA turn into a third world nation that have a rich white person.


44 posted on 09/07/2007 8:31:05 AM PDT by Fawn (http://www.brightlion.com/InHope/InHope_en.aspx)
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To: trisham

Yes, I too felt equating our military quota with meaningless details was unfair and I too was disappointed.


45 posted on 09/07/2007 8:31:08 AM PDT by Calpernia (Hunters Rangers - Raising the Bar of Integrity http://www.barofintegrity.us)
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To: Calpernia

That it is. :)


46 posted on 09/07/2007 8:31:27 AM PDT by perfect_rovian_storm (John Cox 2008: Because Duncan Hunter just isn't obscure enough for me!)
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To: Calpernia
Yes, I too felt equating our military quota with meaningless details was unfair and I too was disappointed.

*************

I'm sorry Hunter didn't have more success this time around. He's a good man, but he will not be the Republican nominee.

47 posted on 09/07/2007 8:33:03 AM PDT by trisham (Zen is not easy. It takes effort to attain nothingness. And then what do you have? Bupkis.)
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To: trisham

We shall see.


48 posted on 09/07/2007 8:35:13 AM PDT by Calpernia (Hunters Rangers - Raising the Bar of Integrity http://www.barofintegrity.us)
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To: perfect_rovian_storm

I like Hunter. I think he’s a good man, but few people are aware of him. He’s simply not going to establish himself in time. If Thompson chooses him for some role in his administration, Hunter may be able to go on for another run at the presidency at a later date.


49 posted on 09/07/2007 8:35:45 AM PDT by trisham (Zen is not easy. It takes effort to attain nothingness. And then what do you have? Bupkis.)
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To: Politicalmom

Unfortunately, it’s not the stupidest thing that I’ve heard from the Duncanders.


50 posted on 09/07/2007 8:38:46 AM PDT by prairiebreeze (PUT AMERICA AHEAD! VOTE FOR FRED!!)
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