I was pretty certain it was going to happen. Although I was skeptical earlier, in part because I assumed the former guv wouldn't want to spend his golden years as a junior senator, the hype and suggestions became too loud to ignore. Moreover, the polls showed that he had a serious chance at beating Feingold.
Tommy Thompson hasn't definitively made up his mind about a run for the U.S. Senate. But family reservations about a campaign make a bid unlikely, Thompson sources say this morning. Wispolitics:
WTMJ-TV's Charles Benson reported this morning that Thompson won't run. But Thompson told the AP he doesn't know what he's going to do.
Sources tell WisPolitics no final decision has been made, but serious family reservations about a bid make a campaign seem unlikely. Anything was possible, they said, because Thompson wants to run.
Thompson is scheduled to speak at tomorrow's Tax Day Tea Party rally in Madison. A Thompson spokesman declined to comment on the former guv's plans, but said his intentions will be clear by the end of tomorrow's speech.
Hmm...This morning I thought his apparent decision to announce his candidacy at a Tea Party was surprising, but simply indicated that he was taking the GOP primary seriously, and that he felt the need to show the right that he was serious about courting their votes. Although Tommy Thompson is still very popular in Wisconsin, some of Terrence Wall's accusations against Thompson for being a moderate would stick with GOP voters.
However, now that it looks like he's not going to run, his presence at the Tea Party highlights another possibility for all the rumors: He's doing it to get the GOP attention and help it fundraise. The best-known Republican in Wisconsin, Thompson can mobilize tea partiers to support the party and maybe even convince some of his former moderate supporters to embrace the conservative candidate that the party ends up nominating.
What do you think?