From Brad over at The Crossed Pond:
I really don’t know if I can think of a modern analogue to the Fred Thompson campaign. Mind you, almost the week before he announced, he was practically the frontrunner for the nomination, with all the Big Mo’.
And, a week AFTER he announced, he was already underperforming, and from then on, his campaign strength has gone from bad to worse to worse to worse to worse to worse.
The only analogy I can muster is it would be as if Al Gore finally entered the Democratic race in early September and then, his first week on the campaign trail, he slapped a baby. And then, his second week on the campaign trail, he slapped another baby. And for every consecutive week thereafter, he just kept slapping babies.
It's fair to say that Fred has underwhelmed on the campaign trail. But after Ron Paul, he would be my pick for the nomination, so I'm halfway rooting for him. I definitely don't think that he should drop out of the race as Brad suggests. But if he doesn't gain traction soon, as in the next 30 days, it won't matter.Also at the Crossed Pond is an interesting analysis on Ron Paul busing in legislators from Arkansas to criticize Mike Huckabee's record as governor on immigration and taxes:
...the Paul campaign has decided that they’re in the hunt, and it’s time to start drawing specific distinctions (and/or to make sure that nobody runs away with it). That Huckabee is the target, on the surface, adds a little chutzpah to it. They’re not dicking around with McCain in New Hampshire or Thompson for third in Iowa, for instance, but going right for the top dog. Which is intriguing, to say the least, because campaigns usually don’t do this kind of thing unless they think that in doing it, they can make a difference. It’s intriguing because they’re acting like a real campaign.
Here’s my guess: Huckabee represents perhaps the biggest obstacle to the Paul campaign in New Hampshire. He’s the guy who, if he comes out of Iowa with a huge boost, is going to ratchet up in New Hampshire polls to second or third. Paul’s at the cusp of breaking through there, but Huckabee, who had been dueling with him for fourth, is already starting to fall ahead, and his rise out of Iowa could lock Paul out of the top four altogether if things fall against him. A fourth in Iowa and a fifth in New Hampshire—which is actually pretty likely as far as expectations go—wouldn’t be very good for Paul’s chances of being a breakout story, to say the least.