Fred Thompson is spending the next month in Iowa in what is clearly a do-or-die effort to revive his campaign:
FORMER TENNESSEE SENATOR Fred Thompson has decided to take his campaign and virtually all of its resources to Iowa in an all-or-nothing attempt to register a strong showing in the caucuses here on January 3. “We’re getting ready to make this not only our second home, but our first home,” he told a small gathering of supporters at the Polk County Convention Center on Friday night. Thompson and his wife Jeri chatted with the crowd before making their way through the exhibits at the Iowa Farm Bureau’s annual meeting in downtown Des Moines.
Beginning Monday, December 17, Thompson will launch a bus tour that will take him throughout the state. From the beginning of that trip through caucus night, Thompson will essentially live in Iowa, taking only a one-day trip out of the state to celebrate Christmas at his home in Virginia.
“Iowa is critical to our campaign, and it may in fact be everything to our campaign,” says one Thompson official. “If we don’t do what we need to do in Iowa, it will be tough to compete effectively down the road.”
Thompson has said publicly that he needs to finish in the top three in Iowa. Campaign officials say that a strong third place finish–presumably behind new frontrunner Mike Huckabee and former frontrunner Mitt Romney–would likely give them enough momentum to survive New Hampshire and compete in South Carolina and beyond. A second place finish would be a victory. “Just when the interest is there the greatest, is when we’ll be here the most.”
Thompson has run a lackluster campaign at best in the three months that he’s officially been in the race, but he is still coming in a respectable third in the Iowa polls and, if he’s able to hold out until South Carolina, he may just be the alternative to Rudy McRomneyBee that Republicans have been looking for.
H/T: Rick Moran