January 16th, 2008
05:30 PM ET
15 years ago

Draft Dobbs group emerges

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.l.cnn.net/cnn/2007/US/11/06/Dobbs.Nov7/ART.LOU.DC.CNN.jpg caption= "CNN Anchor Lou Dobbs."]WASHINGTON (CNN) - Move over Michael Bloomberg. Another famous figure is the subject of a presidential draft movement: CNN's own Lou Dobbs.

Americans for Legal Immigration PAC - a group, according to its Web site, that supports candidates "who make illegal immigration reduction a top priority" - launched a campaign Wednesday designed to convince the CNN anchor to enter the presidential race if a so-called "pro-amnesty" candidate wins the Republican presidential nomination. According to the group, John McCain, Mike Huckabee, and Rudy Giuliani all fall into that category.

William Gheen, the president of ALIPAC, said the group has over 25,000 active supporters spread across all 50 states and an overwhelming majority of them are ready to support a Dobbs presidential bid. Gheen also expressed confidence in Dobbs' wide electoral appeal.

"Lou Dobbs could run and win because he could easily raise the funds and grassroots support he needs to be a historic and viable candidate quickly," he said. The public is eager to rebuke the DC status quo and would quickly rally to Dobbs."

The group has launched an official Web site and is already using it to solicit fundraising pledges for the potential run and showcase Dobbs anti-illegal immigration stance.

Buzz has long surrounded a Lou Dobbs presidential bid in the blogosphere - even more so after Dobbs wrote a column for CNN.com last November in which he hypothesized an "Independent populist" would win the White House. (The Wall Street Journal published a piece soon after that claimed Dobbs was "seriously contemplating" a bid.)

"I can't imagine any one of the current candidates for their party's nomination being chosen by the American people to lead this nation for the next four years," Dobbs wrote in his column. "I believe the person elected a year from now will be an Independent populist, a man or woman who understands the genius of this country lies in the hearts and minds of its people and not in the prerogatives and power of its elites."

"I believe next November's surprise will be the election of a man or woman of great character, vision and accomplishment, a candidate who has not yet entered the race," he wrote.

Dobbs has repeatedly said he has no plans to run for president. But speaking with CNN’s Wolf Blitzer last week, he refused to rule it out. (Watch Dobbs on a potential presidential bid)

"You never say never, but the fact of the matter is, my commitment, my interest lies in being - doing what I do, which is that of an advocacy journalist on this great network," he said, adding "I'm very flattered by the thoughts."

Gheen acknowledged Dobbs' entrance into the race was unlikely, but said his group is ready to "camp outside his office" should McCain, Huckabee, or Guilaini win the GOP nomination.

- CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney

Filed under: Lou Dobbs
soundoff (196 Responses)
  1. jeannie

    Lou Dobbs loves our country, and kudos to his courage.
    We must NOT give the 20millin or more illegals amnesty. Ever.
    This must be a line in the sand, for
    we will lose our country if we "legalize" the invaders. Do we want to be like Canada, where they have two languages and two cultures?

    The USA through bad government has created an illegal alien time bomb.

    The way to solve it may be extreme, but it can be done. Millions of illegas justify extreme measures. One way is through attrition. One way is to bring our soldiers home and put them on the border. India uses her soldiers to protect the border with Pakistan. Why can't we protect our border, for God's sake?
    The 14th amendment must be re-interpreted: childten of illegal aliens
    are not citizens. No more anchor babies.
    This is our country; we have a right to send the illegals back where they came from. They do not respect our country anyway, or they wouldn't have invaded it.
    And build a wall like the Great Wall of China, if that's what it takes.
    Do you want to become Mexico? They are a thrid-world country.
    Another thought: how would Mexico like it if Americans just barged in and demanded rights, jobs, free education, free health care, amnesty, and English as the second language of Mexico? Wake up, America, or in one generation our
    country as we know it will be unrecognizable.

    January 19, 2008 01:17 am at 1:17 am |
  2. Jon

    Wow, I am in AWE of the FEW comments that are against Lou Dobbs - I don't have time to read more, as I would rather take that time to help myself make something of my life and career. They are mostly so ignorant of his show, which proves the authors know nothing of what he actually does which inspired these folks to starts this "Draft" campaign. Such knee-jerk reactions, furthermore, against a studious commentator and observer who simply doesn't appreciate unabashed lawbreakers, makes me like his opposition less and his viewpoints - most of them - more.

    It also amazes me that these same people are likely fans of juvenile "commentary" programs such as MSNBC's (shoulda stayed on ESPN) Keith Olbermann's "Countdown" show. People would do better to steal their "personal" opinions from late night talk shows than Oblubberermann, who is at least anti-conservative and often comes off as a streaking-through-the-park liberal brat of privilege.

    The difference? Lou Dobbs is not conservative, while he holds some views in that area, but he is a progressive. I don't mean his political affiliation, but his approach to SOLUTIONS is progressive and practical (yes, he does offer solutions and detailed discussions with people who have solutions, unlike better-as-sportcasters talking heads).

    highlighting mistakes and successes of our border control efforts,
    our port and border and road and airports security and safety failures,
    our trade imbalance failures,
    our deficit failures,
    our education successes and failures,
    our law enforcement successes and failures....

    I won't go on further, but I could.

    And I only watch Dobbs occassionally. (Lately only a few times a week, and only portions.)

    Dobbs should not run for president, he should enjoy the flattery of the offer, though. He's earned it. He is the most organized, focused, middle class oriented, and inspiring commentator (with a show dedicated to that) on TV that I can think of since the start of cable news networks, at the very least. I don't know when else average American people who WANT TO THINK FOR THEMSELVES and who embrace both individuality, the rights of the citizens over the power of its leadership, and equality under the rule of law, could point to someone as a sensible, non-PC-baiting spokesman. Even the things I disagree with him on I believe can be overcome. Sometimes the message is off, but the purpose is, respectfully, right on.

    Thanks, Lou!

    January 19, 2008 09:07 am at 9:07 am |
  3. Dan Prescher

    Draft for president the most self-serving, shallow, and sanctimonious caricature ever created by the infotainment industry? I’m emigrating.

    January 19, 2008 09:15 am at 9:15 am |
  4. mightymouse

    WOW......looks like Ron Paul fans found a voice......know more about your candidate guys......he will give ALL the illegals here now CITIZENSHIP.

    While l appreciate Ron views on some things...he sounds over the top on the George Washington Isolation theory and makes himself look foolish.

    Now back to MY MAN ....LOU...GO FOR IT!!!!!

    January 19, 2008 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  5. Bob

    Run, Lou, Run . . .

    and when he wins, we the American taxpayer won't have to figure out a way to send the illegals home. As a matter of fact I don't recall the American taxpayer providing bus fare, airfare or the like when they showed up uninvited at our public schools, hospital or jails.

    Run Lou and WIN . . . then Ross Perot's 'giant sucking sound' can be heard for all the right reasons.

    January 19, 2008 09:44 am at 9:44 am |
  6. mightymouse

    WOW……looks like Ron Paul fans found a voice……know more about your candidate guys……he will give ALL the illegals here now CITIZENSHIP.

    While l appreciate Ron views on some things…he sounds over the top on the George Washington Isolation theory and makes himself look foolish.

    Now back to MY MAN ….LOU…GO FOR IT!!!!!

    January 19, 2008 09:45 am at 9:45 am |
  7. zeezil

    GREAT NEWS! Dobbs, the most respected name in journalism and ALIPAC, the most respected group that is fighting illegal immigration teaming up would be a dream. It would be a tremendous boost for us that support the Constitution, the rule of law, enforcement of our current immigration laws already on the books and support LEGAL immigration.

    January 19, 2008 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  8. zeezil

    What a huge breath of fresh air should Lou Dobbs throw his hat in the ring. I would definitely vote for him. Not only is he the only MSM news anchor taking on illegal immigration (which he is totally correct on), he has taken on the economy, special interests, lobbyist influence peddling, government corruption, truth in government, religion in politics, free trade and favored trade status issues, national security, middle class erosion and American worker protection, our crumbling infrastructure, education, food safety and inspections, the environment, China's dangerous imports and its influence on our national deficit, NAFTA, SPP, NAU, LOST, ridiculous government treaties, crime, drugs, racial issues and the list goes on.

    Lou Dobbs has talked about, taken stances on, exposed and researched more issues than any other presidential candidate ever has or ever will.

    January 19, 2008 09:59 am at 9:59 am |
  9. zeezil

    I find it completely ludicrous that some Hispanics and their supporter’s claim that enforcement of our immigration laws (and those of us that support that enforcement) are racist, xenophobic and anit-hispanic. This has no basis in fact, since illegal immigrants are comprised of many nationalities. It is true, though, that 75-80% of illegal immigrants are Hispanic, which is due largely to Latin America’s proximity to our borders. If these Hispanics that cry racism because the vast majority of Americans are against ALL illegal immigration want to feel “less persecuted”, stop invading our country. By doing so you will have removed yourselves from the equation and issue. However, you will still see most Americans against ALL illegal immigration, with no regard to race, culture or ethnicity.

    January 19, 2008 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  10. Ziegfried

    If the Republicans can't offer and advance a conservative choice like Hunter anymore, why not Lou Dobbs? Vote our RINO or get Hillary. Maybe not.

    January 19, 2008 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  11. zeezil

    As of 2006, California contained greater than 25% of the total illegal alien population within the U.S. many of these illegals concentrate in Los Angeles. New statistics from the Department of Public Social Services reveal that illegal aliens and their families in Los Angeles County collected over $37 million in welfare and food stamp allocations in November 2007 – up $3 million dollars from September. Twenty five percent of the all welfare and food stamps benefits are going directly to the children of illegal aliens. Illegals collected over $20 million in welfare assistance for November 2007 and over $16 million in monthly food stamp allocations for a projected annual cost of $444 million. “This new information shows an alarming increase in the devastating impact Illegal immigration continues to have on Los Angeles County taxpayers,” said Antonovich, LA County Supervisor. “With $220 million for public safety, $400 million for healthcare, and $444 million in welfare allocations, the total cost for illegal immigrants to County taxpayers far exceeds $1 billion a year – not including the millions of dollars for education.”

    Just keep in mind that the $37 million a month is for only one county in one state and is only welfare and foodstamp benefits. It doesn't include hospital care, education, fraud, wage depression, crime, depreciation of housing values, the portion of bad loans given to illegal aliens by banks, insurance costs and the myriad of other burdensome expenses that illegal aliens put on the backs of American citizens. There are 29 sanctuary cities in California and because of that there should be little wonder why so many illegal aliens stay in this state. They basically operate with impunity and even if they get arrested for a serious crime there is little chance of them being deported. They can sign up for welfare and food stamps with no questions asked and the hospitals provide them with free care as long as there are still emergency rooms that can’t turn them away for lack of funds. All things considered, California has rolled out the welcome mat for them.

    Is there any wonder that California is right now in a fiscal crisis emergency with a budget deficit greater than $14 billion and growing? Reliable estimates calculate illegal aliens cost the state $10.5 billion each year! Why not cut all public services to those not in the U.S. legally? Just a simple thought on my part that would go a long way to putting California back on its feet. But, I digress…Lou Dobbs is the only news anchor who has been reporting and exposing this situation in the MSM.

    January 19, 2008 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  12. CheshireCat

    Jeremiah this is a good one! "Notice which candidates this group considers pro-amnesty candidates – John McAmnesty, Mike "Liberal Sanctuary State" Huckabee, and Rudy "Sanctuary City" Giuliani."

    The Main Stream Media Libacrats have been openly endorsing these RINOs and promoting them through articles and opinion pieces. It's so-so obvious.

    The only reason you are hearing the Conservative side is because of guys like Lou that have broken away from the pack of Media Liberals. It's well know fact that the majority of Americas are Conservative but our news media is dominated by Liberals. Everyday they are shoving garbage at us that we don't want to hear.

    Lou is music to our ears and that is why he is so popular. The Liberal Media fears him and so should any Liberal presidential candidate.

    Keep up the good work Lou and this solicitation to run is quite flattering. The public appreciates everything you are saying on their behalf. Thanks for being our voice on the air. You would make an excellent president.

    January 19, 2008 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  13. jean

    Please........run Lou!
    To vote for someone who is more concerned about everyday citizens than their own special interests would be a dream come true.

    January 19, 2008 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  14. beholden



    GO LOU!

    January 19, 2008 05:42 pm at 5:42 pm |
  15. Dresden

    You don't have to deport any illegals if you punish the employers who hire them. Force all employers to use the E-Verify system and then there are no jobs for the illegals who come here. No jobs means they self-deport. It's that simple. Lou Dobbs frequently talks about getting tough with employers who exploit the illegal work force. He also talks frequently about the first requirement in solving immigration problems. Secure the border! He says it constantly, if you've watched his show. But cracking down on employers will basically solve the problem. The only reason people stream over the border is to get jobs, which drives down wages for "citizens." If we could get the ACLU out of the way, who along with hypocritical business groups, have temporarily blocked DHS efforts to include an enforcement letter along with Social Security no-match letters, then much of this debate would change dramatically. DHS will issue a workaround to the idiot liberal judge in San Francisco who issued an injunction against the enforcement of immigration laws already on the books. Leave it to California, with their $14.5 billion dollar deficit, to block rational solutions to a serious problem. I really wish the earthquake would hit that would cause that bastion of lunacy to fall in the ocean.

    January 19, 2008 09:37 pm at 9:37 pm |
  16. Chuck

    Lou Dobbs for President,

    Sure makes more sence that what we have runing now. Atleast it's a guarantee that he is not part of the status Quo. He sure knows the situation world wide as well as with in our borders. But that is not the reason I am writting....
    Lou, some one needs to tell Hillary that she is only hurting her self and her bid by having the man with the cigar holder do her hench man work for her. If she as the candidate has a problem with Obama, then she needs to be the on doing the talking not her husband. If she does not have the back bone to stand her own ground while excuting her bid for presidency; I seriously question her own ability to make a decision in the best interest of America if confronted with a serious problem. Hillary need s to do her own bidding and hubby needs to put on his skirt, put on a big supportive smile and take a seat in the side lines like a nice little first lady or would we call him fist man. I must admit Bill has lost what little respect I had for him as an ex president, and a man. Hillary for her failure to do her own bidding and for her OUT RIGHT LIES as to her experience she more than lost my respect. Hillarys experience as a wife of the president and wife of the govenor as her grounds for 35 years experience? Give me a break, where is security clearnance, her defense breifings, her decision and policy making. Hillary was no more than a good wife that stood by her man while he was screwing around in the oval office.
    While we are at it lets tell Obama that he is falling into the Clinton trap. They are delibertly doing this in an attempt to distract him from what he is trying to do. Obama needs to stay focused.

    January 21, 2008 07:26 pm at 7:26 pm |
  17. JT

    I am completely offended by Lou Dobbs' show on Race and Politics. Instead of reporting the facts, Dobbs adds opinionated fuel to a blaring fire. Blacks are not voting for Obama because of his race. If a person were to research Obama's record and qualifications, one would recognize that Obama is an astute and logical choice. Dobbs should learn how to report the news without bias and prejudice. Please learn and adapt the quality and neutral reporting methods that Wolf Blitzer demonstrates.

    January 21, 2008 09:15 pm at 9:15 pm |
  18. Evan Jellicoe

    Did y'all hear Hillary Clinton tonight in South Carolina refer to illegal aliens as "fifteen million Americans" in reference to health care coverage (she was responding ot Obama's plan that does not include illegal aliens)? I suppose in Hillary's universe, if someone breaks into your home, they become "family," and to argue otherwise is to be a "racist." Keep up the good fight Lou Dodds, and please publicize this message from Hillary.

    January 21, 2008 10:30 pm at 10:30 pm |
  19. Evora Sardinia

    Hi Lou, I would like to know how to change the way we vote. I do not agree with electoral votes. It does not make us a democracy we need to couny every vote. And Also the democratic party or the republican should not be able to cancel our vote. Please find out for us how to change it. What do we need to do? Maybe the people should vote on it or the congres WHO? EVORA

    January 29, 2008 07:57 pm at 7:57 pm |
  20. Jane Tyler


    I do not know how CNN allows you to stay on the air. I usually shut off the TV when you are on, but tonight I stayed tuned when I overheard Janet Murguia put you in your place.

    Hate is not acceptable, please clean up you act or get off the air.

    from Boston

    February 4, 2008 08:20 pm at 8:20 pm |
  21. Jay

    Unfortunately, Dobbs is emblematic of the current generation of pseudo-journalists whereby opinion is mixed with fact, and the journalists make no effort to distinguish between the two (Limbaugh probably got the ball rolling on this sort of thing).

    Dobbs mostly complains and offers little in terms of viable solutions. I'm sure many people who agree with him don't mind that he often acts like an arrogant jerk, but there're still lots of us who find his approach distasteful, to put it mildly.

    He said, "I believe the person elected a year from now will be an Independent populist...". Wow... really? For a guy who's been around so long and considers himself the champion of the American people (because *all* American agree with Lou, right? :-\ ), he sure doesn't seem to understand American politics. No, an Independent populist will not become president next year.

    If Lou wants to run for president, let him. He won't win. He won't even get close.

    February 6, 2008 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
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