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Tommy Thompson on Principles & Values

Former Secretary of H.H.S.; former Republican Governor (WI)


Declines debates because opponents "want to shoot at me"

Thompson also had some heated words when asked if he has been avoiding debates with other Senate candidates. "Everybody's upset because I'm leading. If I wasn't leading, if I was last place, nobody could care less whether I come," said Thompson. "The fact that I'm number one, everybody wants to shoot at me. Well that's nice, they are being gentlemen about it. We want to take your head off, so come on down." [For this week's debate], Thompson says he had prior engagements.
Source: WLUK-TV FOX 11 News on 2012 Wisconsin Senate debates , Apr 9, 2012

Bring into administration Dems, Republicans, & independents

Q: What will you restore to the Oval Office?

A: I would open up the East Wing. I would open it up to bring in the best minds--Democrats, Republicans, independents across America--that want to get something done with this great country. Instead of tearing it down, start building, pro-America. And by bringing in the best minds, the best people, we can change the direction and really start building America a stronger and healthier and better tomorrow than ever before.

Source: 2007 GOP Iowa Straw Poll debate , Aug 5, 2007

THIS Thompson is the reliable conservative, not the actor

Q: Is there a need for another Thompson in this race?

A: I think that anybody with the Thompson name should get involved if they want to get involved. It will help the Republican Party to have him in. But talking about conservatism there isnít a candidate on either side of the aisle that has had as many vetoes as I have. Nobody has reduced taxes as much as I have. And if youíre talking about a reliable conservative, it is THIS Thompson--Tommy Thompson, not the actor--thatís the conservative.

Source: 2007 GOP debate at Saint Anselm College , Jun 3, 2007

Send Pres. Bush on lecture tour; but not to U.N.

Q: Seeing as how you were a member of President Bushís Cabinet as Health and Human Services secretary, how would you use George W. Bush in your administration?

A: I certainly would not send him to the United Nations.

I would put him out on a lecture series talking to the youth of America about honesty, integrity, perseverance, passion, and serving the public. George W. Bush believes very much in public service. I think he could be a wonderful spokesperson.

Source: 2007 GOP debate at Saint Anselm College , Jun 3, 2007

Bushís & GOPís mistake: we didnít come up with new ideas

Q: What has been President Bushís biggest mistake since taking office?

A: Because we went to Washington to change Washington and Washington changed us. We didnít come up with new ideas. We got to transform health care. We got to wind down the war in Iraq. We got to make sure that we really are conservatives. If weíre going to spend money as foolishly as the Democrats, the voters are going to vote for the professional spender, the Democrat, not the amateur spender, the Republican.

Source: 2007 GOP debate at Saint Anselm College , Jun 3, 2007

For strong state governments, not federal power

Progressive state-level government does not have to be designed around contemporary liberal ideology. I have tapped into the reform-minded roots of my state to create a proactive government designed around conservative values.

I am not an "anti-government" conservative. I served in the Wisconsin State Legislature for 20 years--it was a part-time job--before being elected governor. From both a philosophical and a practical perspective, I draw a major distinction between the roles of state governments and the role of the federal government. I believe the framers of the Constitution recognized a strong role for state governments, the level of government closer to the people. I do not believe they created or quite envisioned the level of federal power and authority that exists today.

Source: Power to the People, by Tommy Thompson, p. 7 , Sep 1, 1996

1966: Beat 16-year incumbent state representative

In 1966, during my third year of law school, I decided to challenge the state representative from my home district. He was a Republican, and a sixteen-year incumbent. I didn't think I would win, but I wanted to get my name known in the district so I could run when he retired. I was planning to run in the election and then enlist in the Air Force Judge Advocate General program.

As fate would have it, the incumbent made the mistake of taking a two-week cruise to Alaska shortly before the primary election. With a $100 car and $10 a day from my father -- $5 for gas and $5 for food--I spent twenty-one days knocking on every door in the district. By the time my opponent returned from Alaska and realized what was happening, it was too late.

I spent the next twenty years serving in the assembly of Wisconsin's part-time legislature and practicing law in the district.

Source: Power to the People, by Tommy Thompson, p. 19-20 , Sep 1, 1996

WI tradition of progressive governing to get things done

My ten years as governor were not without fierce partisan battles over taxes and spending, welfare, education, and crime, but we always have managed to maintain a level of respect and cordiality. In states like Wisconsin, we don't take partisan politics as seriously as they do in Washington. We can fight like cats and dogs over a major policy issue and have a beer after it's over. Part of this is due to our tradition of progressive government--a shared belief that government should get things done. It also reflects the fact that government is only a small part of what goes on in a state. In Washington, government is everything. In a state like Wisconsin, most people don't work for government and are more concerned with raising their children, working hard at their jobs, and watching the Green Bay Packers on Sunday. It gives you a better perspective on politics when your community is not dominated by it.
Source: Power to the People, by Tommy Thompson, p. 23 , Sep 1, 1996

Religious affiliation: Catholic.

Thompson : religious affiliation:

The Adherents.com website is an independent project and is not supported by or affiliated with any organization (academic, religious, or otherwise).

Whatís an adherent?

The most common definition used in broad compilations of statistical data is somebody who claims to belong to or worship in a religion. This is the self-identification method of determining who is an adherent of what religion, and it is the method used in most national surveys and polls.

Such factors as religious service attendance, belief, practice, familiarity with doctrine, belief in certain creeds, etc., may be important to sociologists, religious leaders, and others. But these are measures of religiosity and are usually not used academically to define a personís membership in a particular religion. It is important to recognize there are various levels of adherence, or membership within religious traditions or religious bodies. Thereís no single definition, and sources of adherent statistics do not always make it clear what definition they are using.

Source: Adherents.com web site 00-ADH11 on Nov 7, 2000

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Page last updated: Jul 13, 2013