Skip to comments.‘Superfit’ Fred [Thompson] hits campaign trail running
Posted on 09/02/2007 10:06:28 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet
HE IS running for president literally. Every day Fred Thompson rises at dawn and hits the gym to get himself into shape for the White House race, according to a close confidant.
Hes really prepping himself physically and mentally for the campaign. Its like Bruce Spring-steen getting ready for the big tour, the source added.
The fitness drive is part of Thompsons attempt to inject energy into his 2008 presidential bid, which he will launch formally on Thursday.
At 6ft 5in in his gym shoes, the former senator for Tennessee and star of the television series Law & Order is not short on stature, but he has been putting aside time for a personal trainer and is said to be svelte and in tremendous shape.
A battle bus is ready to roll with the slogan Security, Unity and Prosperity, taking him to five states. He will appear on the Jay Leno Show, where Arnold Schwarzenegger launched his campaign for California governor.
He had better get cracking, Republicans warn. Ari Fleischer, former press secretary to President George W Bush, said: From the moment that Thompson declares, he has about a one-week window for people to say hes for real or not. If people get a let-down feeling after his announcement, because he got in so late, it will be harder for him to recover.
After a phenomenal start to his unofficial bid for the White House last spring, Thompsons campaign nearly ran out of puff over the summer as the would-be candidate dithered about when to enter the race.
The high point was an audience with Baroness Thatcher in London in June the nearest thing to a blessing from the late President Ronald Reagan. Thompson had been expected to announce a fortnight later, but feared his organisation was in poor shape. As the weeks drifted by, the enthusiasm of his Fredhead supporters waned, his fundraising hit a wall and his poll numbers deflated.
A series of top aides were hired and fired and his wife Jeri, a former Republican consultant, was accused of micro-managing his campaign. She was the one person on top of the job, friends say, and will remain influential.
By the time Thompson was lolling around the Iowa State Fair last month, wearing Gucci loafers on a golf cart instead of going on a walkabout like every other candidate, his closest advisers were appalled by the squandered momentum. The YouTube clips of a seemingly lazy Thompson played to the image of a candidate who lacked the fire in the belly to run.
Speculation mounted that Thompson, 65 who has suffered from lymphoma, a form of cancer, which is in remission was in poor health. He was losing weight, it was noted. But he was in reality turning into a lean campaigning machine, according to friends. He knows the race is going to be physically gruelling and he is all psyched up, one said. Its look at you, man!
Supporters hope Thompsons summer of playing footsie with the voters will be forgotten once he campaigns in earnest. He intends to fill a gap in the presidential market for a robust conservative with a populist touch.
You look at my voting record on taxes, regulations, national security, abortion-related issues and guns, Thompson said. By any measure, Ive got a conservative voting record and I think those are the principles our country was founded on.
The mantra of the new revitalised effort is Let Fred be Fred. Bill Lacy, who recently took charge of his White House bid, ran Thompsons senatorial campaign in Tennessee in 1994. He was lagging in the polls when he climbed into a red pickup truck, drove around the state and impressed people with his southern good ol boy style. Lacy had initially thought the truck was a bad idea. Fred had the good sense to ignore my advice, he recalled. It was classic Hollywood. A happy ending.
This time, Thompson intends to use the internet to maximum effect, having noted early on how a video produced by a supporter of Barack Obama showing Hillary Clinton as 1984s Big Brother went viral.
He is pursuing a risky strategy, however, by snubbing traditional voters in New Hampshire, a key primary state. He is skipping this weeks Republican presidential debate, although the other top contenders will all be present. Thompson also faces a strong rival in Rudolph Giuliani, who has consolidated his position as Republican frontrunner over the summer and leads him by nearly 12 points. However, the thrice-married former mayor of New York is vulnerable to attacks over his private life.
Thompson will be seeking to detach voters from Mitt Romney, the former governor of Massachusetts and a Mormon, who has a slick, well financed campaign and is beginning to win over evangelical Christian voters. If we had Romneys organisation and Freds personality, the race would be over, said a Thompson insider. He has already had a near fatal impact on John McCains campaign. The Vietnam war hero is now down to 11% in the polls.
If Thompson falters, Newt Gingrich, the conservative ideologue, is waiting in the wings. He told conservatives privately last week that if he could get $30m in pledges by the end of October admittedly a tall order he would run for president.
Track the latest polls at www.realclearpolitics.com
“I’m (puff, puff) Mitt Romney. And I approved of this (pant!) message.”
Working out isn’t going to prevent a relapse of his cancer sorry to say.
Fred Thompson has my vote and my support.
I read that Newsweek article that you posted yesterday, for me the real value in the article was the long description of his youth and his pre politics life.
I’m a southerner, I know southerners and their “laid back” style, any one that thinks that Fred Thompson doesn’t have an internal, success drive as big as anyone in the race, is making a mistake.
I suggest that people that are trying to look into the inner man read that article, and they will see that Thompson’s good old boy style, hides a record of a man that seems to get what he wants, no matter what new challenge he decides to take on, and he makes it look like he just fell in to it, ( which is a very typically southern thing, “never let them see you sweat”).
What concerns me more than the cancer itself is its and its ongoing treatments' effects on his energy levels.
Maybe you're upset that Duncan Hunter's own campaign communications director says Duncan has no chance of winning the nomination??
Buck up little camper. Turn that frown upside down! Before you know it, there will be another election in which you can support another vanity candidate.
Indolent being a very relative term when it comes to things like this...carrying with it a significant risk of relapse and death instead of a certain risk of relapse and death.
I’m not the one trying to get a cancer patient elected.
I see now the error of my ways. Fred Thompson never was a proper candidate for president. He's far too old and frail. He has a trophy wife and he has old man stink.
That's why I'm throwing my support behind the only true conservative in this race! John Cox!
John Cox is the only one who can beat Hillary. If you don't support him, it's your fault that Hillary gets elected. Also, if you don't support him, you hang out in bathrooms with Larry Craig.
re: Im not the one trying to get a cancer patient elected.
What a low blow. You must be proud of yourself.
Inconvenient realities don’t constitute low blows.
Perhaps not, but you sure are desperate. It’s amusing actually.
It doesn’t matter to me, I’m supporting Hunter, who is stronger than FT on immigration, on American sovereignty, and on life, and who actually served. He’s also more personable, yet at the same time serious, and doesn’t put people to sleep when he speaks. He is the perfect conservative candidate.
No, from a health standpoint the last thing FT needs is the stress of a run for the White House. Surely, there are a few that care about him enough to see this. Would we run Arlen Specter, politics notwithstanding?
Appears ol' Dunc suffers from a terminal case of 2nd tierism. Unfortunately there is no treatment for his malady unlike non-hodgkins lymphoma.
wow...that is about as negative as you can get. How many people in this country have been cured of cancer and never had it come back again? I am sure the number is very big.
Mitt Romney Pigs Out at Iowa State Fair
Romney chats amiably with the people in line and then leaves in a golf cart to go to his next event.
He hasn’t had any symptoms and didn’t miss a day of work during his treatment.
He is now in remission and is having no treatments.
Hunter can’t seem to show up for work, but keeps taking a paycheck. That’s really honest.
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