Friday, March 30, 2007

Reclaiming Nick by Susan May Warren

This week the Christian Fiction Blog Alliance is blogging about Reclaiming Nick by Susan May Warren. You can go to the Blog Alliance website for reviews and other comments about Susan book. I hope you enjoy it!


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Thursday, March 29, 2007

Update on Dobson/Thompson

Yesterday I posted on James Dobson's statement that he does not believe Fred Thompson is a Christian. That statement spread throughout the internet and was discussed on several blogs including this one. Today I received an e-mail that originated with Reuben Watkins of Grassroots Voters. I've cut and pasted the body of the e-mail here:


Last night the posted a link to an article in U.S. News & World Report titled: Dobson Offers Insight on 2008 Republican Hopefuls, Focus on Family Founder Snubs Thompson, Praises Gingrich. The calls and emails were fast and furious and I do mean furious!

This morning I had an opportunity to speak with Brad Miller, Director of Family Policy Council at Focus. We had a great conversation and Brad confirmed what many of us had been suspecting - the article was not an accurate representation of the conversation.

Dr. Dobson had never actually spoken with Fred and did not know Fred's personal viewpoints and beliefs firsthand.. Dr. Dobson noted that Fred's voting record while in the Senate was to be praised and indicated a strong conservative, pro-family position. Dobson did not know Fred to be an outspoken evangelical, which can be considered a negative in some circles. The notion that Dr. Dobson was supporting a potential Gingrich candidacy over others was also false. Brad also mentioned that there is a great deal of excitement among the "religious right" about a potential Fred Thompson candidacy and that Dr. Dobson was not endorsing or supporting any candidate or potential candidates at this time.

I appreciate Brad for the conversation and helping to clear the air on this and I appreciate your ongoing efforts in supporting a potential Fred Thompson candidacy. If you haven't been to the site lately, please take a minute stop by: We are well on our way to our goal of organizing 10,000 Fred Thompson supporters!

[End of e-mail]

You can see that all sides are trying to clarify the statement but the damage may already be done. One of the leaders of conservative Christians is on the record (and on the internet) as saying that Fred Thompson is not a Christian. The second part is that the response by the Thompson camp is that Thompson was baptized into the Church of Christ. To some evangelical Christians, the response may be more damaging than the initial statement.

I also would like to point out something else. I think it is completely impossible for a person to definitively state that another person is or is not a Christian. A person might be able to say "he doesn't act like a Christian" or "he doesn't fit my definition of what a Christian is" or something like that, but someone certainly cannot comment on another's salvation. The relation between a person and Jesus Christ is individual to that person, and only he/she and Christ know the truth.

Hopefully Dr. Dobson was mis-quoted -- I know from personal experience that it happens all too often when dealing with the media.


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Wednesday, March 28, 2007

James Dobson Says Fred Thompson NOT a Christian!

This article released today quotes James Dobson as saying that he doesn't believe Fred Thompson is a Christian. The Thompson camp quickly countered by saying that Thompson is in fact a Christian, and was baptized in the Church of Christ.

James Dobson carries tremendous weight among conservatives and this statement could have a real (negative) impact on Fred Thompson's candidacy. It will be interesting to see how this plays out over the next several days.


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Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Polls Show Fred Thompson Moving Up

Two polls were released on Monday that showed Fred Thompson clearly moving into third place among republican candidates -- and he isn't even a candidate yet. Real Clear Politics has a link to both the USA Today/Gallup poll and the Zogby poll. Thompson's gains appear to be at the expense of Guiliani and Romney. There was also a report out this week that the John McCain camp says it will not reach fundraising goals by the end of March.

In researching some sites about Fred Thompson I found this list by Congressman Zach Wamp of why Fred Thompson should be president. Wamp is a congressman from east Tennessee.

And then there is this interview with Governor Mike Huckabee. He seems to be lost in the crowd and hardly mentioned anymore (not that he was mentioned a lot before).

The web is buzzing with Fred Thompson. His potential candidacy seems to be hitting Mitt Romney and Rudy Guiliani the hardest. John McCain is languishing. And the primaries are still almost a year away.


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Sunday, March 25, 2007

Catching Up

I was out of town most of last week and have been catching up on some reading since I returned. There was an article in Friday's Wall Street Journal that, as a writer, interested me. It was written by Carl Bialik, The Numbers Guy, about online bestseller lists like and Barnes & Noble. The article certainly doesn't explain how the sales rankings, particularly Amazon, are created but it is interesting to read how those are manipulated.

The article quoted Rick Frishman who I heard at the Mega Book University earlier this month in Los Angeles. Frishman is a bestselling writer but also heads up the New York PR firm Ruder Finn. Frishman is connected with Mark Victor Hansen of Chicken Soup fame, and claims that for a mere $10,000-$15,000 he can get a book propelled to the on-line bestseller lists. Frishman, Hansen, Alex Mandossian, and the other marketing professionals I saw at Mega Book are certainly successful and I wouldn't discount anything they say. Obviously they are trying to make money but what they say about the publishing industry and marketing carries a tremendous amount of weight.

On a different front, I continue to be amazed and pleasantly surprised at the interest in a Fred Thompson presidential campaign. It has been over two weeks now since Thompson said he was considering a run, and he still garners more attention on the web and in the media than any of the republican candidates who have announced that they are running. Robert Novak mentioned Thompson in his article this week. One blog has had several posts about Thompson's position on abortion I haven't posted in over a week, but I still have hits on my site from people all over the country (and from some outside of the country) looking for information about Fred Thompson's positions on different issues and about his faith. It will still be several months before Thompson decides to run but he is already sucking air out of some of the other candidates campaigns.

Personally I hope Thompson gets in. It will make the republican primary interesting and if he wins, he will be tough to beat in the general election.


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Saturday, March 17, 2007

Fred Thompson Still the Topic of Conversation

I haven't posted all week because I've been consumed with the decades old desegregation lawsuit in Madison County and in trying to obtain unitary status for the school system. So I haven't had time to blog.

But in looking back at the week I was surprised at the number of hits on my blog from people looking for information about Fred Thompson. The search requests for Fred Thompson far exceeded any I've ever had for the other republican candidates like Rudy Guiliani, John McCain or Mitt Romney. Many of the search requests were for information about Thompson's religious beliefs. I would like to know something about that too. I've asked around but can't find any public pronouncements by Thompson on this point. Perhaps he will make one some time.

There really does seem to be a tremendous amount of interest among conservatives about Thompson. I've received two e-mail blasts from Bill Frist and his VOLPAC. I've received e-mails from friends wanting me to sign a petition at Grass Roots Voters urging Fred Thompson to run. One friend's e-mail said "finally a candidate I can support." What is it about Thompson that is exciting conservatives?

My last post outlined his positions on issues important to conservatives, but is it just that? He has been married previously but that doesn't seem to dissuade conservative Christians from getting behind him. I suspect it is the old litmus test I talked about before: electability. He has the conservative credentials and conservatives see him as someone who can win.

Some pundits believe that Guiliani and Romney will keep Thompson out of the race. Others say that he is in line to take Paul Harvey's place on his popular radio show and that is too enticing to Thompson.

I don't know if Thompson will get in the race or not, but I do know one thing at this point. He certain is garnering more attention than the candidates who have already announced. Will see if the conservatives are able to draft Fred Thompson.


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Monday, March 12, 2007

Fred Thompson's Positions on the Issues

The possibility of Fred Thompson running for president has generated a lot of interest over the weekend. There are some who say that there is no chance Thompson will run. But the web seems to be buzzing with questions about Thompson's faith and his position on different issues. Yesterday Chris Wallace interviewed Thompson on Fox News and here is a transcript of that interview. Many conservatives have to like what they heard: Pro-life; believes Roe v. Wade should be overturned; against gun control; against same-sex marriage; and supports President Bush's surge of troops in Iraq. Many of the republican candidates already in the race must be concerned about a potential Fred Thompson campaign.

Also yesterday Rudy Guiliani's words from years ago about public funding for abortion were replayed. Nothing new really. Everybody knows that Guiliani is pro-abortion and the fact that he supports (or at least supported) public funding for abortions would have to be inferred.

Fred Thompson basically said that he isn't convinced that any in the republican field of candidates is capable of "carry[ing] the ball" in November 2008. He's going to wait a few months before making a final decision about running. But if the other candidates don't start showing they have the ability to win in November, 2008, look for Thompson to jump in.


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Saturday, March 10, 2007

Abortion Ban in Mississippi

The Mississippi state legislature passed a law this week that would make abortions illegal in the magnolia state if the U.S. Supreme Court ever overturns Roe v. Wade. The bill is waiting Governor Haley Barbour's signature. The bill was originally designed to presently ban all abortions except in cases where the mother's life was in jeopardy or in cases of rape. Rather than becoming a case to test Roe v. Wade, the bill was amended to only become law if Roe v. Wade were overturned. The argument advanced by some in seeking the amendment was that the Supreme Court is still one vote shy of overturning the 1973 case. Some call this type of law a trigger law because it doesn't challenge Roe v. Wade direclty but becomes law if Roe is ever overturned.

The reasoning by the Mississippi legislature's amendment was that the Supreme Court is still one vote shy of overturning Roe. I agree and have posted about it in the past. Might President Bush get an opportunity to make another appointment to the Court? There has been recent speculation that Justice Ginsburg might retire and earlier speculation about Justice Stevens. We'll see but certainly the court is one vote short of overturning Roe.


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Friday, March 09, 2007

Fred Thompson for President?

One former senator from Tennessee decided not to run for the White House but The Hill is reporting this morning that another former senator from Tennessee might be interested. And another former senator from Tennessee is lining up support. The story in The Hill is that former senate majority leader Howard Baker is on capital hill lining up support for a Fred Thompson campaign. Many of you remember that Thompson got his start by serving as the chief republican counsel on the Senate Watergate Committee in 1973. Later he successfully ran for the senate and later left public office. He is now an actor on the NBC show "Law & Order" where he plays the lead district attorney general.

Thompson's interest in the White House tells me that there are still a lot of republicans who are not satisfied with the current list of potential nominees. Howard Baker still commands a lot of influence. He successfully lead President Bush's legal team during the 2000 election recount in Florida. It will be interesting to see if Thompson jumps in.

On a different note, the Christian Fiction Blog Alliance is blogging this week about The Watchers by Mark Andrew Olsen. Please follow these links to read reviews and to find out more about Mark's book.


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Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Back to Politics as Usual

It's been almost a week since I had time to post. I was out-of-town most of the weekend attending the Mega Book University with Terry Whalin. I've spent the first part of this week catching up and brainstorming some other writing projects. Now it's time to get back to the regular routine.

Ever since the Drudge Report flashed the sirens and posted in bright red letters that Scooter Libby had been convicted of perjury, etc., the media has been consumed with the story. Jurors have been interviewed, claims that this conviction puts Vice President Cheney and the entire White House in a bad light have been raised by liberal media, and there have even been calls for President Bush to pardon Libby by at least one of the jurors. It has consumed several days of news cycles and it will be interesting to see if the fallout has any impact on the 2008 presidential election.

Somewhat lost in the Scooter Libby hoopla were a couple of articles about Rudy Guiliani that I read over the last couple of days. First was this one that ask whether Guiliani can get past the first date. It is an issue I addressed some time ago. Then I said that Guiliani would have a very difficult time winning the republican primary but would be a very electable candidate in the general election against any democratic candidate, including Hillary Clinton. The other article opines that evangelicals will vote for Guiliani because of his wartime leadership despite his positions on gun control, same sex marriage and abortion. It is the electability litmus test. Guiliani does have a huge lead in early polling in the USA Today polls.

The question continues to be whether a true social conservative will move into the top tier of republican candidates. So far it isn't happening. And as more money is raised by the leaders, the chances of it happening continue to diminish significantly. Will conservative republicans look to the electability test rather than where a candidate stands on important conservative issues? So far it appears to be the case.


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Thursday, March 01, 2007

Who Will Fill Conservative Void?

The question that many are asking so early in the 2008 presidential campaign is who will fill the conservative void? What Robert Novak and other pundits are asking is who is the real conservative who will step to the front of the republican candidates? The consensus is that so far there isn't one. John McCain or Rudy Guiliani can't fill the void although Guiliani plans meet with some conservative leaders tomorrow. Mitt Romney is certainly trying to secure the conservative base into his camp.

I've mentioned Mike Huckabee often as a potential candidate who could secure at least the social conservative votes. Some are trying to solicit him to run for the U.S. Senate rather than the White House. Another name that I ran across yesterday but had completely forgotten about is Jim Gilmore. I don't know anything about him other than what is on his exploratory committee website but he seemed to make waves at the Conservative Political Action Convention in Washington this week.

I think it is important that we have a true conservative in the top tier of the republican candidates but no one seems to be stepping up at this point.

On a different note, the Christian Fiction Blog Alliance is bloggin this week about A Valley of Betrayal by Tricia Goyer. I hope you get a chance to read the reviews and purchase Tricia's book.


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