What Makes Fred Thompson Run?

It’s a funny week for Fred Thompson to be odd man out in the scrum of GOP ’08 presidential contenders. Rudy Giuliani’s got evangelical Christian Pat Robertson blessing his candidacy. Mormon Mitt Romney has the religious right’s Paul Weyrich. Even John McCain has an endorsement from evangelical hero Sam Brownback.

But Fred Thompson — conservative former senator and TV actor who was to be this campaign’s Reagan — is sort of on his own, not conservative or galvanizing in quite the way expected. But could he still be the GOP sleeper?

This hour, On Point: getting Fred Thompson.


Christine Byun, reporter for ABC News covering the Thompson campaign.

Joe Mathews, political reporter for the Los Angeles Times, he wrote a series of articles on Fred Thompson’s early life and career.

John Geer, professor of public policy and education at Vanderbilt University, editor of The Journal of Politics, and author of “In Defense of Negativity: Attack Advertising in Presidential Campaigns” (2006).

Dick Polman, national political columnist for the Philadelphia Inquirer and author of the blog “Dick Polman’s American Debate.”

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