Monday, March 12, 2007

You Know Things Are Bad When

Fred Thompson is talking about running for president. Today, the actor and former senator from Tennessee who hasn't been in politics since 2003 came out of the closet as a potential candidate for the Republican presidential nomination.

That's like George Foreman coming out of his million-year retirement to box again.

Talk about signs that prominent Republicans don't believe that John McCain, Rudy Giuliani, Mitt Romney, and Newt Gingrich could win a general election. This is interesting because McCain and Giuliani are running at least even with Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama in the polls. The Tennessee Republicans promoting the Fred Thompson boomlet, Howard Baker for instance, must think that the good poll numbers are an illusion.

And they're probably right.

The Fred Thompson speculation also raises the interesting possibility of all the national contenders losing steam and local Republicans making some noise as favorite sons of their states, regions, or micro-constituencies. You could have Fred Thompson from Tennessee, Tommy Thompson from Wisconsin, and Jeb Bush from Florida. You could also have Chuck Hagel representing both Republican anti-war voters, and Douglas Feith campaigning on behalf of incompetents everywhere.

Now that's a meltdown I'd want to see.

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