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Yet another article about Thompson’s lack of true conservative credentials, he’s not really a Reagan conservative. *Yawn* There were some conservatives who thought Reagan wasn’t a true conservative. Thompson is absolutely solid on all the issues and state’s rights is a conservative position:
He’s a consistent federalist: Believing in states’ rights is a central tenet of conservative thinking, but so is opposition to homosexuality and support for sweeping tort reform. Thompson opposes gay marriage but believes states should be allowed to sanction civil unions, as the governor of the early-primary state New Hampshire has just said he’ll do. While in the Senate, Thompson, a former trial lawyer, also resisted one of the tenets of the Contract With America that called for limitations on malpractice awards-an issue he thinks should be left to the states.
It’s the social conservative who are moving away from the conservative position, he’s being consistent. I think that’s honorable and is one of the reasons we should support him over the other candidates, he’s guided by principles, and they are consistent principles. He’s not trying to play to the base.
Speaking of conservative issues, he has one of the best positions on gun control in the race and it’s a winning position:
Virginia, like 39 other states, allows citizens with training and legal permits to carry concealed weapons. That means that Virginians regularly sit in movie theaters and eat in restaurants among armed citizens. They walk, joke and rub shoulders everyday with people who responsibly carry firearms — and are far safer than they would be in San Francisco, Oakland, Detroit, Chicago, New York City, or Washington, D.C., where such permits are difficult or impossible to obtain.
The statistics are clear. Communities that recognize and grant Second Amendment rights to responsible adults have a significantly lower incidence of violent crime than those that do not. More to the point, incarcerated criminals tell criminologists that they consider local gun laws when they decide what sort of crime they will commit, and where they will do so.
Still, there are a lot of people who are just offended by the notion that people can carry guns around. They view everybody, or at least many of us, as potential murderers prevented only by the lack of a convenient weapon. Virginia Tech administrators overrode Virginia state law and threatened to expel or fire anybody who brings a weapon onto campus.
In recent years, however, armed Americans — not on-duty police officers — have successfully prevented a number of attempted mass murders. Evidence from Israel, where many teachers have weapons and have stopped serious terror attacks, has been documented. Supporting, though contrary, evidence from Great Britain, where strict gun controls have led to violent crime rates far higher than ours, is also common knowledge.
So Virginians asked their legislators to change the university’s “concealed carry” policy to exempt people 21 years of age or older who have passed background checks and taken training classes. The university, however, lobbied against that bill, and a top administrator subsequently praised the legislature for blocking the measure.
The logic behind this attitude baffles me, but I suspect it has to do with a basic difference in worldviews. Some people think that power should exist only at the top, and everybody else should rely on “the authorities” for protection.
Despite such attitudes, average Americans have always made up the front line against crime. Through programs like Neighborhood Watch and Amber Alert, we are stopping and catching criminals daily. Normal people tackled “shoe bomber” Richard Reid as he was trying to blow up an airliner. It was a truck driver who found the D.C. snipers. Statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show that civilians use firearms to prevent at least a half million crimes annually.
And for proof that he’s not a poser, go here.
And yet another conservative issue could help push Thompson to the head of the pack: abortion. Again, he has the strongest position in the race and now with the pro-life wing of the Republican part feeling energized by the recent decision in support of the ban on partial birth abortions, support for Rudy will erode. Thompson will benefit from that because he has the best position on abortion. I agree with Dick Morris’ take on this:
The recent Supreme Court decision upholding Congressional legislation banning partial birth abortion and the tragic shooting at Virginia Tech will both ignite demands on the left for an aggressive drive to protect Roe v. Wade, and to legislate tougher gun controls. This Democratic offensive puts Rudy Giuliani in the middle and could erode support for his candidacy. On the other hand, it could fire the ranks of true believers and lead them to rally around a Fred Thompson candidacy.
He’s urging Thompson to get in early if he wants to beat Rudy:
If Fred Thompson jumps into the race quickly, with both feet, and hits the ground running, he can pre-empt Newt’s potential candidacy and head it off – much like Barack Obama’s swift entry into the race eclipsed any real chance that Al Gore had to challenge Hillary. It is well worth getting into the race early in order to win a bid in the semi-finals and a free pass to the GOP finals against Rudy.
The financial demands for competition on the super, super Tuesday – February 5, 2008 – are daunting. Giuliani, with $12 million on hand, has a big head start. If Thompson waits too much longer, Rudy’s financial edge could become decisive. With virtually the entire nation voting on the same day, the cost of advertising and even of personal campaigning, is huge and Thompson will need every day he can make available to raise money – starting too late may mean never having a chance to win.
But Dean Barnett is urging Thompson to wait until the fall and appear presidential, above the fray:
Now about Thompson ” not that anyone from Thompson HQ has asked my advice, but if I were he, I’d stay out until the Fall. Act presidential, be above the fray, keep enjoying copious amounts of favorable free media, and avoid the embarrassments that inevitably occur with 24/7 campaigning. The Thompson strategy should be to capitalize on a surge of interest that will occur when he officially enters the race. If he enters now, he’ll be just another guy by the time Iowa rolls around. Right now, he’s the Great White Hope.
Shouldn’t that be the Great Right Hope? This is weird advice coming from the Hugh Hewitt blog since Hewitt was saying in February that it was too late for any other candidates to enter the race.