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Breaking: Tommy Thompson Forms Exploratory Committee

Well, this is unexpected. Former Wisconsin Governor Tommy Thompson wants to run for president and has formed a exploratory committee.

Former Wisconsin Gov. Tommy Thompson, who served as Health and Human Services Secretary in President Bush's first term, said Wednesday he intends to form a committee to explore a possible run for the White House in 2008.


"I intend to do so after the first of the year," the Republican said in reference to establishing an exploratory committee.

Thompson made the comments in Iowa, where he met with about 100 members of a group called Iowans for Wellness and Prevention. The state holds the first votes of the presidential nominating process.

Thompson, who will turn 65 on Sunday, spent nearly four decades in politics and government, including 14 years as governor. He resigned as HHS secretary in December 2004 shortly after Bush won a second term. His tenure at HHS was marked by anthrax attacks, a flu vaccine shortage and passage of the Medicare prescription law.

"We touched the third rail of politics and delivered on our promise to modernize Medicare with prescription drug coverage," Thompson said.

During his stop in Iowa, Thompson argued that his background as a Midwest governor and HHS secretary would appeal to voters.

"The three big issues in 2008 are going to be health, energy independence and the war in Iraq," he said.

Thompson faces a daunting task in what's expected to be a crowded field of Republican presidential candidates. Front-runner Sen. John McCain planned to file the paperwork for an exploratory committee on Thursday and former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani recently took the first step in his bid.


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Comments (13)

He is the best candidate th... (Below threshold)
Pete_Bondurant:

He is the best candidate thus far. I hope Thompson runs.

He was a great Governor in ... (Below threshold)
dickdee:

He was a great Governor in Wisconsin. But he is sorta like GW since he doesn't have the greatest command of english. So far he's a better choice than the rino's seeking fame. Just imagine the politcal space between him and that commie Feingold!! Tommy is the superior politican and has a much better positive buoyant attitude.

Remember back when it was t... (Below threshold)
SomeJoe:

Remember back when it was the "War on Terror"? Too much focus on Iraq alone is Republicans getting dragged off message. Iraq is a battle. It's not going to end there.

As a <a href="http://politi... (Below threshold)

As a commenter noted over in Politics, he may be angling for the Veep nomination. As the popular former Governor of a "light blue" Great Lakes state, he could be an ideal selection, too.

Well, he was popular here a... (Below threshold)

Well, he was popular here and taxes were lower, but spending went up under him. So he would be another Bush type Republican.

The wrong Thompson is runni... (Below threshold)
hermie:

The wrong Thompson is running.

I'd have chosen Fred.

Steve of Norway is correct.... (Below threshold)
theExecutioner:

Steve of Norway is correct. He's no fiscal conservative. However, he IS much more conservative on other issues than McCain, Giuliani.

I know of Thompson's accomp... (Below threshold)
Pete_Bondurant:

I know of Thompson's accomplishments as governor but I have been trying to find out his views with respect to the War on Terror. Can anybody shed any light? Is Thompson a hawk? That is the most important issue to me.

Who?... (Below threshold)
SurfinKC:

Who?

Sorry. Tommy was on just ab... (Below threshold)
yetanotherjohn:

Sorry. Tommy was on just about everyones list for a republican senate recruit that got away. Even in the 2006 election year, he had a good chance of winning in Wisconsin (real good chance), so losing the senate is at least in part to be laid at his door. Given his age, I could understand him not wanting to go through the rigors of running for senate or serving. I could understand it if he was like Rossi and wanted a job in his home state, rather than serving in DC. But if you feel you are up to making the run for president (and presumably serving if you won), then running for the senate should have been on the table. And until he can explain how his personal ambitions to be president are more important than the service he could have done for his country in running for senate, I am not kindly disposed to his candidacy.

Tommy Thompson? You mean th... (Below threshold)
hansel2:

Tommy Thompson? You mean that loser who couldn't get enough cipro doses to us during the anthrax scare? The guy who failed to estimate enough flu vaccines around the same time?

Sure. Let this fool try to run for President. i wouldn't hire him to make french fries at the drive through.

Don't recall the Cipro thin... (Below threshold)
Timothy:

Don't recall the Cipro thing, but I do recall him saying that the anthrax attack was an isolated case of "bad water" by a hiker when it first began. I wrote him off as a government hack who didn't have a clue what he was talking about at that moment.

Eh.... (Below threshold)
jd:

Eh.




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