August 18th, 2007
10:53 AM ET
14 years ago

Thompson: Roe 'bad law and bad medicine'

Watch CNN's John King interview Fred Thompson.

DES MOINES, Iowa (CNN) – Likely Republican White House hopeful Fred Thompson told CNN Friday that he would work to overturn Roe v. Wade if elected president, and would push for a constitutional amendment that protects states from being forced to honor gay marriages performed in other states.

“I don’t think that one state ought to be able to pass a law requiring gay marriage or allowing gay marriage and have another state be required to follow along,” Thompson told CNN’s John King in an interview Friday.

Thompson added that the U.S. Supreme Court decision legalizing abortion “was bad law and bad medicine.”

As for when he will jump into the race, the former Tennessee senator said "shortly."

“We are going to be getting in if we get in, and of course, we are in the testing the waters phase,” he said. “We’re going to be making a statement shortly that will cure all of that. But yeah, we’ll be in traditionally when people get in this race."

Thompson also said he believed he could enter the presidential race next month and still win the Iowa caucuses.

On the issue of Iraq, Thompson refused to provide a timeline for how much longer US forces would remain in the country under his administration, but said, “We need to make every effort to make sure that we don’t get run out of there with our tail between our legs before we’ve done the job of securing that place.”

Asked about critics who call him “too lazy” to put in the long hours necessary to run for president, Thompson said: “If I have critics in Washington it's not going to come as a surprise to me. I'll have more by the end of this campaign,” adding, “The proof’s in the pudding. I think that’s curable.”

- CNN Chief National Correspondent John King

Filed under: Fred Thompson
soundoff (535 Responses)
  1. Irving 143

    Up to fifty percent of conceptions are estimated to "spontaneously abort," or miscarry, before the twentieth week. Or, to put it another way, fifty percent of pro-life-defined-babies are aborted by God before their twentieth week of life.

    Some would say that this holocaust is due to our "fallen state," or that it's God's will and beyond our understanding. With those stats, though, God's purported position as a pro-lifer seems pretty dubious. Hope Fred Thompson's aware of this, because once you put God on your team it's very tough to distance yourself from Him if things get sticky.

    August 18, 2007 03:02 am at 3:02 am |
  2. N., New York, NY

    Disgusting. After eight years of Bush, he offers up THIS?? What a sad, pathetic man.

    August 18, 2007 03:02 am at 3:02 am |
  3. Mik Brooks, Eugene, Oregon

    Now just a minute! Your headline said Thompson would ban abortion, leading us to believe he would ban all abortions. He has said no such thing. I'm Democrat and an Edwards supporter and have watched the media distort John Edwards speeches in a similar manner. I am sick of it. What Thompson said was he was personally oppossed to aborton and that was it. His position is no different whatsoever than the oubic position of Hillary Clinton.

    August 18, 2007 03:22 am at 3:22 am |
  4. Steph, Port Charlotte, FL

    It makes me so angry that someone can be so ignorant and closed minded about the world and so unwilling to accept it that he is going to trying to amend the constitution to only put this country more out of date than it already is to the rest of the world. The rest of the world views our country to be living in the past, out dated and ignorant. And ignorance is unacceptable, it suggests stupidity and being happy with be judgmental and unreasonable.

    August 18, 2007 03:59 am at 3:59 am |
  5. Derek, Phoenix, AZ

    "One word: MENACE. People like him should be deported! Instead of trying to track down illegal immigrants, we should be deporting hate mongers like Thompson!

    Posted By Iridius, Seattle WA : August 17, 2007 5:13 pm"

    Seriously? I mean come on; what an unintelligent, uninformed comment.

    August 18, 2007 04:35 am at 4:35 am |
  6. William P. Eskdale, St. Petersburg, FL

    This is the kind of commentary we can expect from those pandering to the religious right (and there is nothing right about them). Despite the fact that a very large majority supports abortion and a substantial minority supports gay marriage, Fred Thompson and the religious right would attempt to overturn established law in the one case and impair the full faith and credit clause of the Constitution on the other hand. Its really time to show Fred Thompson those that he courts that this is a secular state and that their religious beliefs should not be imposed on the rest of us.

    August 18, 2007 05:31 am at 5:31 am |
  7. Kim Centralia, IL

    I can't believe with all that is going on all he has to comment on is gay marriages. You know all I have heard from the republican party is how unemployment is at an all time low. Question is when the troops come home, where will the unemployment rate be then?? Im sorry but I worry more about having a job and keeping it than if my neighbors next door are gay.. I have mouths to feed in my house, I don't worry about other homes sexual activities. Seems to me others are too busy worry about issues of the past to figure out what to do with our future.

    August 18, 2007 05:36 am at 5:36 am |
  8. Lee, East Northport, NY

    Geez, Fred, I'm kind of hoping that you'll also say that you don't believe in evolution, too, so that you can complete the perfect idiot trifecta. I'd like to live in a contemporary and progressive America, not the Dark Ages that you're proposing.

    August 18, 2007 05:52 am at 5:52 am |
  9. Marv, Appleton, WI

    In response to Potential Presidential Candidate Fred Thompson's statement that "“We need to make every effort to make sure that we don’t get run out of there with our tail between our legs." Apparently Mr.Thompson and most of the other politicians have never met my Uncle Frank who told me that "he who learns to run away, lives to fight another day." I see no national disgrace or dishonor in leaving Iraq as a losing combatant. The invasion was wrong from the start. How many more American soldiers' lives will this misguided thinking cost? The prolongation of this tragedy to prevent "losing the war" will not honor our soldiers nor will it gain respect of friendly nations or strike fear within the axis of evil. There comes a time to cut your losses, tail up or down.

    August 18, 2007 05:56 am at 5:56 am |
  10. Barbara J. Hot Springs, Arkansas

    Thank you. Someone who stands up for what is right, not for the minorities who bring up the same thing every election, abortion and gays. Those have no business in politics. They are moral issues. There seems to be more important priorities like medical care and the high cost of just living.

    August 18, 2007 06:02 am at 6:02 am |
  11. Andrew, Sunnydale CA

    I always find it amusing how most conservatives want to protect life in the womb. They are very hardcore about it. But then on the onther side of the coin, when that child is born, it seems that they are cast aside (okay not just by conservatives,but, in general). It is even more hilarious though because conservatives campaign as pro life, but also are for the most part pro death penalty. Dear god I love the taste of irony in the morning. You would think that since they were so hell bent on saving that life before it left the womb they would want to save it from a pretty public execution. Then again that doesn't get you votes. Neither does allowing gays to marry, but maybe they're just scared the divorce rate will go down and make all us hetro's look bad. Or maybe they really believe there is somewhere out there in this great wide world a ligit reason a man shouldn't marry a man or woman a woman. Cause the bible don't hold any weight in the gov't nor should it.

    August 18, 2007 06:37 am at 6:37 am |
  12. Your worst nightmare.

    GO FRED GO.. Anybody against abortion has my vote. I don't see how anybody can kill an innocent baby. Overturn Roe v Wade.

    August 18, 2007 06:45 am at 6:45 am |
  13. Stan, Adirondack NY

    Don't we have an opening for dog catcher???

    August 18, 2007 07:02 am at 7:02 am |
  14. Dawn, Brockton, Massachusetts

    All the more reason why Thompson will never be elected. He would set our country back 200 years!

    August 18, 2007 07:07 am at 7:07 am |
  15. Susan Cheshire, CT

    Thank you for posting Thompson's comments. Now I can work hard to make sure this close-minded neolithic simpleton doesn't even receive consideration. Shame on him for not understanding the larger picture.

    August 18, 2007 07:07 am at 7:07 am |
  16. chuck davis, Tampa, FL

    Mr. Thompson just lost my potential vote. Although I personally would not encourage abortion, I do feel that abortion should be a personal choice.

    August 18, 2007 07:13 am at 7:13 am |
  17. 50 cal

    my vote will be for anyone who is pro gun........

    August 18, 2007 07:16 am at 7:16 am |
  18. Roy, Miller Place, New York

    Not even officially in the race and he can't wait to spew his intolerance for others. Mr. Thompson would have a better chance of being president if he kept his mouth closed. The American people have had enough of Bush and his like minded arrogant fools who erode the constitution and our rights under the guise of religious beliefs. Only a fool would think that we, the middle class, are better off after seven long years of Bush, Cheney, and the republicans. I am a republican who will vote for anyone but a republican!

    August 18, 2007 07:17 am at 7:17 am |
  19. Martijn Kamerbeek, Morris NY

    Vote for this guy! Guaranteed you will never have to make decisions of your own! Abortion bad, War good, Gays bad.

    You are not qualified to have an opinion. Plus, thinking for yourself would leave you with less time to watch tv or charge the card.

    Everybody's happy, right!

    Haven't you seen the soap series Law and Order...this guy already sort of worked for the government, he's got the credentials! 😉

    August 18, 2007 07:29 am at 7:29 am |
  20. Alison, Dingle, County Kerry

    America can afford to ban abortion when it can afford to take care of all unwanted children everywhere and give jobs to all unwed mothers while providing free child care. America can afford to ban abortion when the cost of having a child in hospital is free and that child's healthcare is free. And fathers can believe that they have a right to have a legal say in their child's life if they are prepared to pay for that child's upbringing, take custody if necessary, and women have full and equal pay, opportunity for work, access to advanced education, healthcare and child care, provided by the government. But since you insist on using all that government money on a military, you can't, so abortion has to stay legal. Republicans are too stupid to get that: either you have a military, OR you have no abortion. Choose one. Pay for guns, or pay for your nation's children.

    August 18, 2007 07:36 am at 7:36 am |
  21. Cassie

    Well he might as well not even get in the race. He has just killed his own race before it even became "offical".

    Stick to acting!

    August 18, 2007 07:36 am at 7:36 am |
  22. Kim, Syracuse, NY

    I didn't get through the 207 comments posted before I started this one BUT what I did read was so negative. I agree with Fred on the two issues he mentioned, and the tidbit on Iraq. Of course there are many others that need the nation's attention.

    August 18, 2007 07:47 am at 7:47 am |
  23. cathy wiley

    you wonderful man, you have our vote anyone who thinks like our LORD, is a man after our heart.Good for you and the Mighty LORD, be with you and watch your back.

    August 18, 2007 08:10 am at 8:10 am |
  24. Stephanie, Ann Arbor, MI

    I know who I won't vote for now.

    August 18, 2007 08:16 am at 8:16 am |
  25. R.D. Tulsa Oklahoma

    He's more of a great white dope than a hope. Open mouth and remove all doubt...

    August 18, 2007 08:23 am at 8:23 am |
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