Magazine article Insight on the News

All Eyes in Tennessee Are on Thompson

Magazine article Insight on the News

All Eyes in Tennessee Are on Thompson

Article excerpt

"I just want to be prepared," confides Rep. Ed Bryant (R-Tenn.). Bryant is awaiting Republican Sen. Fred Thompson's (R-Tenn.) announcement of whether he will run for re-election in 2002. But it remains to be seen if Thompson will forfeit his seat in a Democratic-controlled Senate and return to the big screen or possibly the legal profession.

Thompson "has been very tight-lipped" on the issue, notes Stephen Lindsey, a spokesman for the Tennessee Democratic Party. Just last week, the senator said he had not made up his mind. But figures from the Center for Responsive Politics indicate that Thompson isn't keeping pace with the fundraising habits of an incumbent senator. Thompson's receipts in 1999-2000 totaled only $103,752.

Meanwhile, Bryant is "raising money like a wild man," says Lindsey. His total receipts in 1999-2000 of $827,549 are eight times that of Thompson. "I typically raise quite a bit of money," says Bryant. But the congressman admits to being "more aggressive in this cycle. …

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