Monday, September 17, 2007

New GOP frontrunner doesn't have a name

(Published 7/21/07)

An Associated Press-Ipsos poll released this week introduces us to the new frontrunner for the GOP presidential nomination, and it’s someone named "None of the Above."

Despite the constant campaigning and posturing by the Big Three - former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, U.S. Sen. John McCain and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney - many in the GOP would apparently rather take their chances with an unknown and as-yet unnamed candidate than get behind any of the known quantities.

Giuliani has taken the biggest tumble, dropping 14 percentage points to 21 percent since March, while McCain and Romney sit at 15 and 11 percent, respectively. Those who couldn’t or wouldn’t commit to a candidate now make up 23 percent of those polled, up from 14 percent just last month.

Much of this has to do with the candidate-who-isn’t-a-candidate, former U.S. Sen. Fred Thompson, who sits comfortably at 19 percent, within the poll’s margin of error of 3.5 percentage points.

Why hasn’t Thompson gotten in yet? Officials from the campaigns of his potential opponents are virtually daring him to GET IN THE RACE ALREADY. Democratic aides argue that Thompson could be violating campaign finance laws by "ducking" the full financial disclosures and filings required of official candidates, according to Mike Allen of

Why all the fuss? Because privately, they know what Thompson knows: as long as he can maintain a relatively strong position - and polling as one of the top two candidates without even announcing certainly qualifies - he has nothing to gain by subjecting himself to the rigors of a full-on presidential campaign - or getting "chewed up," as Allen puts it.

With his exploratory committee, Thompson can raise money (he’ll make his first Alabama fundraising appearance in Birmingham on Monday), hire staff, prep for debates and continue "testing the waters" from relative safety on the sidelines while the "Big Three" thrust and parry and hemorrhage precious campaign cash.

As CNN reported this week, the "uneven enthusiasm" and "dissatisfaction" of those in the GOP "underscores the volatility of the ... nomination fight."

I’m betting that will all change when Thompson finally decides to dispense with the toe-in-the-water approach and take the plunge.

* * *

In other news this week, an Australian man was told that doctors sewed a tooth into his forehead following a collision with another player during a rugby match more than three months ago.

Imagine that doctor-patient consultation:

"Hi, Mr. Jones. Thanks for waiting. We’ve finally found the reason for those headaches, eye infections and lethargy you’ve been having. (Clears throat) Well, um, let me put it to you this way. You ever watch Seinfeld?"

"Seinfeld? I guess so. Why? Can I not have soup or something?"

"No, nothing like that. You know the one with the Junior Mint?"


"Well, this is kind of like that, except, it’s ... um, it’s a tooth."


"Yeah, it seems that a tooth lodged in your forehead, and it was sewn in there when you had that nasty wound closed up three months ago."


"Yes, well, we’re all human, and, after all, let’s be honest; with the shape of your forehead (voices trails off) ... Well, it’s a mistake anyone could have made."

(Sounds of lawyers being called)

Also this week, a Colorado man was found to have "squirming fly larvae" living under the skin on his head. He likely received the larval infestation while on a trip to Belize this summer, because, according to the Associated Press, "bot fly infections are not uncommon in parts of Central and South America."

It just goes to show that if you aren’t keeping up with the news, you’re missing out ...

... On some pretty disgusting stuff.

No comments: