The Campaign Spot

More Thompson on McCain-Feingold, And An Anti-Whining Diatribe

A reader contends that I’m committing “journalistic malpractice,” complaining that after yesterday’s post on Thompson & campaign finance reform, I didn’t point readers to Thompson’s comments to Sean Hannity.

HANNITY: Federalism. All right, the other issue: you were one of 11 Republicans who supported McCain-Feingold. A lot of conservatives are angry at that. Do you still support it? Was it the right decision, in retrospect?
THOMPSON: Part of it was, and part of it wasn’t. The part that I came to town to change was the increasing amounts of money being given to politicians. The Clintons showed us how to use soft money in ways that people up until recently thought was against the law. And more and more large donations flowed into the parties and to the candidates.
I said, “Let’s raise the hard money legitimate limits that we’ve always had from $1,000″ — it was my amendment, really, that got it from $1,000 to $2,000, plus indexed for inflation, do away with the soft money. I still think that’s a good idea. I support that. Coming to a politician and giving him a bunch of money and having business before him is not a good idea.
HANNITY: But 60 days before a general, 30 days before a primary…
THOMPSON: That’s not working.
HANNITY: That’s not working?
THOMPSON: It shouldn’t work.
HANNITY: You would repeal that?
THOMPSON: Yes.

Well, yes. But those comments suggest his view has shifted a bit from what he had two and a half months earlier told the Wall Street Journal,

Conceding that McCain-Feingold hasn’t worked as intended, and is being riddled with new loopholes, he throws his hands open in exasperation. “I’m not prepared to go there yet, but I wonder if we shouldn’t just take off the limits and have full disclosure with harsh penalties for not reporting everything on the Internet immediately.”

And just as Reagan had had it up to his keister with leaks, I’ve had it up to there with people whining that I’m unfair and biased against their guy (since I’m getting it from every direction). Sorry, McCain fans, but your man has had a lousy month in the polls and the base loathes his position on immigration. Sorry, Fredheads, but Thompson’s handling of the abortion lobbying inquiries will not be studied for years to come as a triumph of p.r. crisis management. Sorry, Rudy fans, but Rudy’s speeches do sometimes fall flat and some of his debate answers have looked haltering and tentative*. Sorry, but Mitt Romney’s dog-on-the-roof story will go over about as well as a dog-walking service sponsored by Michael Vick and pointing out that some voters will never vote for a Mormon does not make me “an accomplice to bigotry.” If Sam Brownback doesn’t want to get whacked around for switching his vote during the immigration deal, he ought to lay off making attacks on other candidates for flip-flopping.
Ladies and gentlemen, I didn’t get your candidates into these messes, your man did. Stop giving me grief for noticing the flaws of Republican candidates on what is first and foremost a news site. You want nothing but happy talk? Go visit your candidate’s web site, ‘cause this ain’t it.
Oh, and Ron Paul will never become president. There, I said it. Live with it, Paulites.
* UPDATE: An NR editor asked, “haltering”? I’m referring, of course, to when a debate answer falters so much that it halts. Also, I’m referring to when Rudy removed the leather straps used to secure a horse – the “halter” – from behind the podium. Doesn’t anyone else remember him doing that?

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