Twenty-four minutes after he began speaking in a small restaurant the other day, Fred Thompson brought his remarks to a close with a nod of his head and an expression of thanks…“Can I have a round of applause?” Mr. Thompson said, drawing a rustle of clapping and some laughter.
“Well, I had to drag that out of you,” he said.
That’s just pitiful. At least he still has the little woman to perk him up when he feels deflated.
Jeri Thompson, wife of GOP presidential candidate Fred Thompson, shakes off the “trophy wife” label critics have tagged her with for being 24 years younger than her husband….she met her future husband at a Nashville supermarket on July 4, 1996…he carried her groceries to the car, and she invited him to a friend’s party that night.
Years later, she tells People: “I was never an older-man-dater kind of girl before.”
Voters who came out to see him as he traveled through Iowa — even while expressing admiration for his views and intense interest in his candidacy — said they were struck by how little energy or passion he appeared to bring into a room….After his events, he tended to stay for only a few minutes to sign some autographs or pose for some pictures….he tends not to ask many questions of the people he meets and tends not to make prolonged eye contact with them.
Thompson is quite an unusual politician. His acting background would suggest a special kind of charisma or skill at public speaking, but now on his second swing through Iowa, he didn’t whip up the excitement of a crowd or sound particularly eloquent or inspiring as Barack Obama or John Edwards often do. Instead of being eager to shake hands and meet voters when he finishes his speeches, he ambles toward them, speaks in a deep, but muted tone and poses for pictures or answers questions, often without making eye contact….
Thus far, Thompson has been king of the clueless on the campaign trail. And apparently quite the personality dud and yawnfest. Considering the GOP contenders, that is really saying something. Oliver Willis has more, including a link to one of the worst interviews with Thompson that I have ever seen.
In real life, unless the leader knows what he’s doing, we’re all in a world of crap. And, frankly, haven’t we had enough from Shiftless George to last us a few generations? (Don’t miss the phony Bubba act story about Thompson’s little red truck via Washington Monthly.) Here’s a thought — how about we pick an actual leader who is willing to do all the homework, instead of one who just tries to play one on teevee and hasn’t bothered to even learn basics about the damn job. Lazy, much?
(Very recent photo of Fred Thompson in Iowa via Yahoo/AP/Kevin Sanders. Doesn’t he look perky? Not.)