Fred Thompson comes out against another smear by another irresponsible reporter:
Today I had this story written about me regarding what I said at a Town Hall event in Burlington, Iowa by a reporter who wasn’t even at the event. Incidentally, I declined to be interviewed by this particular reporter yesterday for reasons which will soon be apparent.
In referring to me, she reported “he doesn’t like modern campaigning, isn’t interested in running for President, and will not be devastated” if he doesn’t win.
Below is a transcript of what I actually said in response to a question by a local Burlington resident which was the basis of the reporter’s story.
It is clear that there are those in the media who will exact a high price for candor and from those whom they consider to be insufficiently ambitious. But it is with increasing amazement that we see that those who are willing to slant or leave out important parts of a story to make their point.
I used to attribute the “lazy Thompson” narrative to nothing more than the media’s own lack of interest in real coverage—but with the number of times Sen. Thompson has been deliberately misquoted I’m starting to wonder if there’s something more at play here. I’m starting to wonder if the media isn’t afraid of Sen. Thompson. After all, the media leans heavily Democratic—and they have a vested interest in seeing the weakest possible Republican challenger to their heir apparent Hillary Clinton. That’s why the media has been playing hands-off with Mike Huckabee—they know that his pseudo-populism would fracture the economic and social wings of the Republican coalition and ensure a Clinton victory. Sen. Thompson is an authentic conservative on both fiscal and social issues. He’s strongly pro-life, he’s strong against earmarks, and when it comes to judges, Sen. Thompson is the one that President Bush chose to help Chief Justice Roberts through the Senate. Thompson would keep the Republican base together in a way that few—if any— of the other Republican hopefuls can.
No wonder they’re afraid.
What Sen. Thompson actually said in Iowa reminds me of precisely why I support Sen. Thompson’s bid for the Presidency. He isn’t a career politician, nor is he a member of the Beltway political class. From Sen. Thompson’s remarks:
If people really want in their president super type-a personality, someone who has gotten up every morning and gone to bed every night and been thinking about for years how they win the presidency of the United States, someone who can look you straight in the eye and say they enjoy every minute of campaigning, I ain’t that guy. So I hope I’ve discussed that and didn’t talk you out of anything. I honestly want – I can’t imagine a worse set of circumstances [than] achieving the Presidency of the United States under false pretenses. I go out of my way to be myself.
We’ve had enough of phony political hacks pandering to every possible group under the sun. The professional political class in this country is an affront to the values of citizen leadership that the Founders desired. Sen. Thompson has a career of civil service, but he’s hardly a member of the political class. His campaign is based strongly on ideas, not empty promises and not attempts to conceal the issues with gauzy personal narratives.
Thompson remains tied with the rest of the pack, but if substance were what mattered, he’d be winning by a large margin. The media keeps misquoting him because they have their narratives in play, and they’re scared that a solid conservative might get the Republican nomination and take the Republican Party to the White House for another four years. Republican primary voters need only concentrate on who the media wants them to vote for to know precisely who is the least fit to win. Thompson is the real thing—a conservative with solid policy prescriptions and the ability to get them enacted. That’s what the media fears, and that’s what the country most desperately needs.