January 16th, 2008
05:30 PM ET
13 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. Rob

    I live in Southern California and you have to "push 1 for English" everywhere now. It is like living in Mexico! I want an angry white man to step up and turn the clock back; make it safe for white America again, and if the ignorant, politically correct, head in the sand crowd wants to run around yelling "racism" or something equally banal... then let them. Fred Thompson, or Lou Dobbs.. I want my country back!!!

    January 17, 2008 08:27 am at 8:27 am |
  2. Ferlens

    Lou for President? What is an idea to ponder about…
    Advantages:
    • He understands and vocalizes the thoughts of the average citizen
    • He is not under the spells of lobbyists
    Disadvantages:
    • True, after 8 years of a man in the white House who has no common sense, it seems like anyone else could do a better job.
    • He has no propose solutions to the issues he is raising
    The country is in a very bad shade and cannot afford any more years of crisis. On a lesser note, CNN will lose the great title “The Most Trusted Name in News” for it will lower itself to a propaganda machine like Fox News.

    January 17, 2008 08:53 am at 8:53 am |
  3. Melissa, Dallas, TX

    ""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.""

    Ron Paul?

    January 17, 2008 09:00 am at 9:00 am |
  4. Justin, Atlanta, GA

    Come Dobbs. No wonder you will never mention Ron Paul's name. Just get behind him and stop with the theatrics. That kind of dishonesty is not going to win you votes.

    January 17, 2008 09:04 am at 9:04 am |
  5. Bill

    Once the borders are closed – shut tight – I see no problem in greatly reducing the
    number of illegal aliens in this country; a huge fine and long prison term for anyone who hires an illegal – be it to pick your crops, work in your factory, make your bed, or cut your grass. Withdraw free health care, food stamps, free schooling and whatever other free benefits illegals are now receiving. What incentive would there now be for an illegal alien to remian in this country?

    January 17, 2008 09:07 am at 9:07 am |
  6. April

    Lou Dobb is a wonderful man and would be a great president. How refreshing it would be to have a president who cares about America's middle class and listens to Americans. Those who are attack ing him are probably either illegal aliens or those who profit from illegal immigration. Thanks for standing up for the majority of Americans Lou!!!!

    January 17, 2008 09:19 am at 9:19 am |
  7. Anonymous

    "I don't know one Presidential candidate that has endorsed amnesty"

    If you bothered to actually watch Lou's show – you would. For starters:

    1) Hillary Clinton, along with governors of several states, said she was in favor of giving drivers licences to illegal aliens.

    2) John McCain lives in Arizona, one of the states most affected by illegal immigration. Yet time and time again, he has fought any measures to secure the border.

    3) Two US border patrol agents are currently in jail for doing their joband arresting a Mexican drug smuggler. The smuggler pulled a gun on them, and they were forced to use theirs. The US border patrol agents were fully prosecuted for doing ther job, and the drug smuggler was given amnesty to testify against them. That was about a year ago, and those guys are still in jail. Several Senators have petitioned Bush for a pardon, and he has refused to hear it.

    Big business wants that border open so they can continue to get cheap labor, and your lawmakers and candidates are doing everything intheir power to make it and keep it that way.

    January 17, 2008 09:28 am at 9:28 am |
  8. roger, conway sc

    I watch Lou from time to time, what bothers me the most about him is that he in closed minded toward anyone's views that differ from his, expecially on immigration. I feel strongly that people should not be in our country illegal but our government has allowed 12-20 million into this country illegally and I do not see how the US can send them back in a humane manner. I agree with closing off the border to stop the illegal's from entering but there needs to be a solution on what to do with the illegals that are here. The other problem that I have with Lou is that CNN pays him about 6 million a year & he lives on a 300 acre spread in NJ & he says that he speaks for the average american (us) how many of his viewers make that kind of money & live on 300 acres.

    January 17, 2008 09:28 am at 9:28 am |
  9. John

    I have watched CNN since the early days of The Capitol Gang. I watched Lou Dobbs regularly until his hours changed. I think Lou Dobbs should follow The Capitol Gang into history (and take Wolf with him.)
    I read Lou's comments on the CNN web page yesterday and I can assure you when he repeatedly used all of us he was not speaking for me. Of course I am not "middle class" but an elite member of the lower income working class.
    I like the views of David Grange and William Cohen when they are Lou's guests. I would take Lou's position on illegal immigration over McCain's but I would never vote for Lou Dobbs for president or vice president.

    January 17, 2008 09:31 am at 9:31 am |
  10. Ryan Indianapolis

    Lou Dobbs is a fraud...please do some research on this phony before you jump on his bandwagon......Not to mention he is a close-minded loser.....

    January 17, 2008 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  11. Will

    Hey Bill, just because a segment of the population doesn't vote the same way you do doesn't mean they are stupid. Just so you know, I'm a northern liberal

    January 17, 2008 09:59 am at 9:59 am |
  12. Wolff Blitzer 08

    I will vote for Wolff Blitzer any day any time over all the Dem and Republican candidates. I love you Wolff. 🙂

    January 17, 2008 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  13. roger, conway sc

    I watch Lou from time to time, what bothers me the most about him is that he in closed minded toward anyone's views that differ from his, especially on immigration. I feel strongly that people should not be in our country illegal but our government has allowed 12-20 million into this country illegally and I do not see how the US can send them back in a humane manner. I agree with closing off the border to stop the illegal's from entering but there needs to be a solution on what to do with the illegals that are here. The other problem that I have with Lou is that CNN pays him about 6 million a year & he lives on a 300 acre spread in NJ & he says that he speaks for the average american (us) how many of his viewers make that kind of money & live on 300 acres.

    January 17, 2008 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  14. Walt, Belton, TX

    Think maybe Lou has too high an opinion of himself, kind of like Hillary, etc..

    January 17, 2008 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  15. Julie-Albuquerque

    Oh Lord, please don't let this man run for any political office – I love CNN, but have always switched the channel when his program comes on. He is biased, judgemental, and unflexible. Traits we certainly don't need for a President of this country.

    January 17, 2008 10:26 am at 10:26 am |
  16. John G, New York, NY

    Give me a break.

    Lou Dobbs is an incurable narcissist who makes a living at inflaming non-issues for the purpose of pandering to his own self-importance.

    When will CNN realize that this guy has no intention of reporting the news but, rather, is hell bent on BEING the news? He does no service to the reputation of CNN.

    January 17, 2008 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  17. Nick, Texas

    Go ahead and run Lou. We need another fringe media darling candidate now that it's clear that Thompson and Paul are going nowhere in the polls.

    January 17, 2008 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  18. Tolu, Minneapolis, MN

    Puhlease!!! Lou Dobbs is a populist idiot. Talk is cheap; getting stuff done is not. Don't wait our time with this lunatic who only cares about ratings.

    I used to be a huge Dobbs fan, when he used to host Moneyline. Now, he's a crazy Xenophobe who thinks we are in the Guilded Age.

    January 17, 2008 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  19. mike, dallas, TX

    Lou Dobbs for president? That is insane.
    Anybody running for president needs a healthy dose of ego. But Lou Dobbs' talk of running for president is a result of a disproportionate size of megalomania. Just because a bunch of immigrant hater sympatheizers send you e mails that soothe your ego does not mean your leadership is needed and you should run for the presidency. Who is next? Glenn Beck? Bill O'Reiley? Give me a break!

    At the start of the Iraq war Lou Dobbs stopped becoming a business news anchor and became a cheer leader inviting retired Generals and defense secretaries on his show adding another coverage to the already nauseating 24 hr cable coverage of the war. At that time I e mailed him posing a question whether he was acting as an anchor or if he was using the program as a platform to run for office. He replied it was none of my businness and he will run the show what ever way he likes. I guess my instinct was right.

    But it bothers me a great deal when news personalities use the mass media given to them to inform the public end up using it to advance their own political future and ambition. I don't think that is fair. Can you imagine one of the presidential candidates having the opportunity to build his platform for 4 years on a daily TV program for free before announcing to run while others spend millions of dollars to get a one or two minute spot to get their message through? If Lou Dobbs really cares for the middle income family and for America why doesn't he quit his job at CNN and serve as a council man, a mayor or even a lecturer in a university for few years and then run like anybody else at a level field? That will tell us if Lou dobbs cares more about middle income America or about Lou Dobbs himself

    January 17, 2008 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  20. Sensible Cape Coral Fl

    The acid test of genuine criticism is the ability to offer solutions. Sorry Lou. You are so full of yourself that you have no time for common snese.

    January 17, 2008 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  21. George, Billerica, Mass.

    I understand Mr. Dobbs frustration with Washington on the issues he cares about. But all this nonsense about independent runs for President will accomplish nothing. The electoral process is fixed for the two major parties. I wish Mr. Dobbs would use his pulpit to go after this corrupt process with as much fervor as he did with illegal immigration. Let's talk about the restrictive ballot access rules, corporate influence, the idea that campaign money has been ruled to be free speech, that campaign funds can be used for other purposes, Congressional district gerrymandering, a plurality voting system that discourages having more than two candidates and encourages negative campaigning, allowing election without a majority, and especially this State by State winner-take-all Presidential election system. The bedrock democratic principle of elections by the people and by a majority are ignored in our system. Note how none of the candidates (one exception: Mike Gravel) ever talk about electoral reform, even after the 2000 debacle. Gee, wonder why that is...?

    January 17, 2008 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  22. John, OH

    We all know he is against illegal immigration and few things he says make sense but this group is named Americans for Legal Immigration. Now correct me if I’m wrong but from his show I have not heard him supporting legal immigration either. He is against “immigration”, be it legal or illegal. He is against increasing visa number based on employment, against increasing temporary working visa numbers and that is legal immigration.

    January 17, 2008 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
  23. Dave Reader

    I am a lifelong Republican and I tell you that I will vote for Lou Dobbs (should he decide to run) no matter who the GOP nominee may be.

    Dave / Columbus, NM

    January 17, 2008 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  24. Fed up citizen

    I love the thought of a Dobbs/Beck ticket!!!! I have recently started watching him and he seems to be standing up for the middle class (speaking out on the craziness coming out of Washigton with both parties) Why doesn't the media focus on that. Washington cronies are as crazy as Britney Spears-nothing makes sense.

    January 17, 2008 11:57 am at 11:57 am |
  25. Anonymous

    One key point that Lou Dobbs doesn't get: Much of Central and South America poss the economic conditions that throughout history have produced violent cultures of opposition against the regional power. In this case, the regional power would be the US. This could be very dangerous. Chavez tries to stir up serious opposition against us -he even goes as far as establishing a close relationship with Iran so that he can advance anti-Americanism to increase his power- but his foolishness doesn't take root in Latin America. Why? Because good hard working people from Latin America come here, discover that Americans are not Satan, and send their hard earned money back home to their loving families. The result: they don't hate us or want to kill us. These remitences preserve peace and help build nice futures and market places in coutries that would otherwise be struggling much worse. Everyone wins. It's very effiecient. Such exchanges provide security for us and much needed foreign aid for them. I love immigrants, even illegal ones. I'd rather struggle with my terrible Spanish and patiently enjoy their terrible English than listen to that bore Dobbs. It makes me proud to help illegals in any way I can. They're some of the best Americans I've ever met.

    January 17, 2008 12:00 pm at 12:00 pm |
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