August 18th, 2007
10:53 AM ET
13 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. Tammy, Tipp City, OH

    To Kuro in Long Beach CA...if we want deliberate misquotes I'll tune into Fox News Channel!!

    August 17, 2007 05:53 pm at 5:53 pm |
  2. Matthew W. Combest

    Well, put Thompson down in the Hate mongor book – and he had so much potential. what a lost soul...

    August 17, 2007 05:53 pm at 5:53 pm |
  3. Scott, Newport, KY

    Well, he just lost my vote. Rudy 2008!

    August 17, 2007 05:56 pm at 5:56 pm |
  4. s. andrews las vegas, nv

    good actor-bad candidate

    August 17, 2007 05:58 pm at 5:58 pm |
  5. Sharon, Littleton, CO

    I'm so shocked! Not another holier-than-thou,hateful and bigoted right-to-lifer running for the GOP nomination! That's precisely what has been wrong with this country for the last six years. The current administration is so preoccupied with what other people do in their bedrooms and about the holy crusade to protect the fetus that it is unable to address the real issues that are important to the rest of Americans (e.g. healthcare, education, our crumbling infrastructure, the war in Iraq, our disappearing middle-class and the loss of our civil liberties) I hope Thompson gets the GOP nomination so he can taking "thumping" in 2008. Go Dems!

    August 17, 2007 05:59 pm at 5:59 pm |
  6. Lance, Monrovia, CA

    Are you kidding me? Is this guy serious?

    Fred Thompson is saying whatever he can possibly say to get noticed and get elected without saying too much or having to actually make a real effort.

    This guy is the EPITOME of politics as usual. He would be even more asleep at the wheel than Bush is, and Bush is in a vegatitive state.

    Our only hope is if this jerk got elected would be that he'd develop Alzhiemers and forget he was president.

    The only problem is, that nobody would notice.

    What the hell does he stand for anyway? He speaks in cryptic nothings about what he would do with no tangible information given.

    He'd repeal Roe vs. Wade? It was a bad law? Give me the constitutional evidence.

    I'm tired of Presidents that want constitutional ammendments to take AWAY our rights. That would be the first time in history ever that a ammendment has been a restriction instead of a freedom.

    don't try to legislate my body or those around me. If gays want to get married, that's the church's issue, not my governments.

    What ever happened to the conservative party that said big goverment and big legistation was bad? What ever happened to the party that felt government should be neither visible or divisive?

    It used to be called the Republican party, but instead, they decided to go for devisive sound bites to whip up the Christian right.

    That ain't America dude, and you sure as hell ain't presidential just because you play a guy with a brain on the tee vee.

    August 17, 2007 06:02 pm at 6:02 pm |
  7. Addam, Hurricane WV

    Its funny that people care so much about the unborn until they are born, and then could care less afterwards. The same people with these "superior morals" are the same people who want to cut back on social programs like health insurance for children, welfare, SSI, food stamps, housing programs and other needs based programs. They are so eager to protect the child but could care less how that child's needs are going to be met once its born. Statistics say a majority of abortions are performed on the poor. So for you people out there who want your personal/religious beliefs to become law, you better put your money where you mouth is and start paying more taxes to help working mothers support these children. How is a mother working for minimum wage supposed to support a child, not to mention have enough time to raise that child. Are you going to pay to support her, because she can't be at two places at once, and last I checked babies don't raise themselves. You can argue that she should have made better choices, but doesn't the bible talk about the issue of free will? Didn't Jesus not talk about forgiveness and understanding for all people including those less fortunate or those who make bad choices. If you read the bible more and stopped listening to preachers you might find yourself being a better person all together.

    August 17, 2007 06:03 pm at 6:03 pm |
  8. BOBBY BURNS JONESBORO, AR

    THANK YOU FRED THOMPSON MORAL VALUES ARE IMPORTANT YOU ARE MY GUY A STRAIGHT SHOOTER GO FRED

    August 17, 2007 06:03 pm at 6:03 pm |
  9. Lu, IL

    At first I thought this article was a spoof posted by the Onion. It's somehow funnier that this guy is really considering running!

    August 17, 2007 06:04 pm at 6:04 pm |
  10. KP - Detroit, MI

    Law and Order sucks, and so does this tool.

    August 17, 2007 06:07 pm at 6:07 pm |
  11. Publisher, Texas

    I say Fred for President. I like his straight line conservative views.

    August 17, 2007 06:09 pm at 6:09 pm |
  12. Jeff S, Dayton, OH

    I always thought conservatives felt Hollywood stars should stay in Hollywood and out of politics. Except of course for Ronnie, Arnold and now Fred! Of course, the Republican party is the most hypocritical party there is.

    August 17, 2007 06:10 pm at 6:10 pm |
  13. Anthony Van Norman, Greensburg, PA

    oops, there go your political aspirations! better stick to sitcoms!

    August 17, 2007 06:13 pm at 6:13 pm |
  14. Klinemann, San Dimas CA

    I guess he's a doctor now too, or he just played one on TV. Oh please, just go away.

    August 17, 2007 06:15 pm at 6:15 pm |
  15. Dianne, Normal, IL

    Jim (of Fayette, VA), I think your statement about governors being the best presidents is egregious at best. All you have to do is look at Rod Blagojevich of Illinois to see governorship at its worst. Rod may think he's governing but I shudder to think of him in the highest office of the land. Also, Fred Thompson as president would be an unmitigated disaster. Banning abortion is always the rallying cry of men who don't have to actually have a hand in raising an unwanted kid. And if gays are working, voting, dying in Iraq and serving our country, they deserve the same rights as straights, hands down. No vote from this late middle age woman!

    August 17, 2007 06:16 pm at 6:16 pm |
  16. Rob Shearer, Phoenix, AZ

    This is the great white hope of the Republican party? You have got to be kidding! With quotes like these flying out of his mouth, Fred will sink himself in all but the redest or should I say redneck of states. Things are suddenly looking up for Mrs. Clinton. Ha!

    August 17, 2007 06:19 pm at 6:19 pm |
  17. Dennis

    One has to wonder how Thompson hopes to be elected president, while espousing views opposed by a solid majority of Americans.

    August 17, 2007 06:19 pm at 6:19 pm |
  18. C.N. - Lowell, IN.

    I don't get liberals – they don't mind killing 50 million babies since '72 but they can't appreciate military heroes who have given their lives to save us all from jihad.

    August 17, 2007 06:20 pm at 6:20 pm |
  19. Anthony, Greensburg, PA

    K. in Charlotte, NC...

    Do you also think we should be doing something to protect the socioeconomically disadvantage 18 year old men and women in the Middle East right now! If abortion is murder so isn't this Republican induced Middle East Mess! It's entertaining to see the slow minded fools who are so easily roped in by these inconsequential purposely splitting issues! To boot, you're likely a low income conservative. Never will understand!

    August 17, 2007 06:21 pm at 6:21 pm |
  20. Harley Jane, Houston

    thats a pretty dumb thing to say. He's just lost the confidence of a good majority of the American People. Oh wait, he's a republican, they can get away with saying crap like that.

    My apologies...

    August 17, 2007 06:21 pm at 6:21 pm |
  21. Chuck, Redondo Beach CA

    Yeah, he's against abortion, until his wife slaps him around. I heard she's a firecracker, fires his staff right and right. Another Hollywood republican, what a surprise.

    August 17, 2007 06:26 pm at 6:26 pm |
  22. Vincent J. Petrosino

    Ladies of America, Unite! Now is the time to elect a qualified woman as president such as Hillary Clinton because candidates like Fred Thompson will have you lurking in back allies again to correct the mistake a lying male snake foisted on you! Overturning Roe v. Wade also means preventing women from making and keeping the advances they have made since Roe v. Wade was passed. Men do not get pregnant and have a million excuses for not using protection ! This is why our forefathers were wise enough to declare a separation of church and state. We cannot go backward, we must keep moving forward! Ladies, do not allow this to happen. As the father of several daughters, I ask you to see this for what it is! Sexist grandstanding.

    August 17, 2007 06:27 pm at 6:27 pm |
  23. Mrs. America

    He needs to work on increasing his vocabulary.

    August 17, 2007 06:28 pm at 6:28 pm |
  24. JS - Tampa, FL

    No matter how you feel about either issue, Thompson just signed his ticket for the off ramp. He won't be elected president after this move. It's too divided even amung conservatives. Too bad.

    August 17, 2007 06:30 pm at 6:30 pm |
  25. Thomas J.

    Thank you, CNN.

    This story and these comments have given me the best laugh I've had in a long time.

    Thank you, America, for allowing us ordinary citizens to sound off like this.

    August 17, 2007 06:30 pm at 6:30 pm |
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