Sunday, August 12, 2007

What Might Have Been

All the people who said Barack Obama should have waited a cycle before running for President should take a close look at the case of former Wisconsin Governor and Bush cabinet member Tommy Thompson. Thompson was considered a potential front-runner for the GOP nomination in both 1996 and 2000, but he declined to run. This time, he threw his hat in the race, and proceeded to get completely annihilated before withdrawing today after a bad performance at the Ames Straw Poll.

Moral of the story: Don't miss your window.


Anonymous said...

Heh, "through his hat in the race". Does it count as a Fruedian slip if it's not sexual?

I wonder if another Thompson hasn't missed his window.

PG said...

Thompson probably wouldn't have had a great chance against Clinton in 1996, because his own great accomplishment for Wisconsin, welfare reform, was being enacted on a national level by Clinton at that time. 2000 would have been good, though -- pity he didn't enter the GOP primary. He certainly would have been preferable to GW Bush.

I don't think Obama would be missing his personal window of being a well-known person if he waited for the 2012 or 2016 election. Thompson got buried at HHS in 2001 and left even that national position at the beginning of 2005 -- no one knew who he was by 2007.