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Jan. 7, 2008

Fred Thompson

by Ya Zhou, Online Connections Editor & Online Copy Editor
Editor's Note: Fred Thompson dropped out of the presidential race on Jan. 22.

Political Party: Republican
Current Position: Member of the Council on Foreign Relations and a visiting fellow at the American Enterprise Institute
State: Tennessee
Political Experience: U.S. Senator of Tennessee, 1994-2002

This is not original reporting. All information has been compiled from Thompson's campaign site.

As a Republican Senator from Tennessee, Fred Thompson has already expressed many of his political views. Similar to Rudy Giuliani's "12 Commitments," Thompson has a set of "First Principles," which are the core beliefs he will pursue if elected as President, according to Thompson's campaign web site.

His first principle is individual liberty, which translates to limited government involvement in the life of an individual. A key point of Thompson's campaign is judging and balancing federalism between the central and state governments. He believes in cutting down waste in the government. As President, he proposes to open the government's fiscal records for the public to see. According to his campaign site, federal budgeting and reform is one of Thompson's priorities because the national debt averages out to about $170,000 per person.

Another one of Thompson's "First Principles" is maintaining what he calls traditional family values. Thompson is pro-life, and, like several other Republican candidates, wants Roe v. Wade overturned. While he does not support same sex marriages, he believes the decision is up to the states, as opposed to the federal government. Moreover, he aims to preserve the Constitution's Second Amendment, which secures the individual's right to own arms. As stated on his campaign site, "The answer to violent crime is smart, effective and aggressive law enforcement. The real effect of these gun-control measures is to place onerous restrictions on law-abiding citizens."

Thompson has had a history of mixed opinions on the issue of illegal immigration. In 1997, he was in favor of granting amnesty to illegal immigrants from Nicaragua and Cuba. Three years later, in 2000, he voted against granting amnesty to illegal immigrants from El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Haiti. Currently, he opposes amnesty and claims more border security is needed.

While Thompson is not a front-runner for the Republican nomination, the majority of his platform is consistent with the conservative stance; he has chosen to compromise on only a few issues.



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