The early reaction to the Thompson is mixed. The NY Times is remarkably restrained, quoting a GOP consultant to the efffect that “Putting that figure out – $5 million – and not meeting it was probably not a smart move from a messaging standpoint,” but noting that “$3 million is nothing to laugh at.” Conservative commentator Allahpundit at HotAir recites Thompson’s excuse that $3M is acceptable since they are supposed to be raising only modest “testing the water” sums. He then notes: “That’s fine, but in that case why were Fred’s ‘First Day Founders’ initially asked to bring in $4.6 million? Or even $5 million? ????” The “we shouldn’t be raising big money” excuse seems very odd indeed, since presumably they are trying to do just that with big fundraising dates in July (including ones in D.C., Atlanta, Baton Rouge, North Chatham, Massachusetts and Alabama), the total for which have not yet been released. But the good news, haven’t found anyone talking about last week’s staff shakeups.
“Lessons learned in the two months that former senator Fred Thompson, R-Tenn., has been “testing the waters”: 1. Having a campaign shake-up does not require having a campaign (though having a meddlesome spouse helps). 2. Folksy observations do not answer questions about lobbying work on behalf of abortion-rights groups (and the flies called “opposition research” buzz really loudly come fall). 3. No one politician can possibly fix all the things that plague the GOP (even if that politician plays a problem-solver on TV). 4. Some actors look better in the middle distance than in tight shots.”
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