Thompson’s fundraising numbers are a self-trap

Jim Geraghty posts the Thompson defense of their "disappointing" fundraising numbers. I, frankly, don’t know what to make of all of this, but I have two thoughts.

First, people are comparing John McCain, Mitt Romney, and Rudy Giuliani’s fundraising numbers to Fred Thompson’s. Simply, these are apples and oranges. McCain and Romney had been running for President for several years. Romney ran for his RGA position in 2004 and starting building his national fundraising network soon after. And Giuliani had started his political operation at least a year beforehand, collecting business cards and favors as he campaigned for candidates all over the country. Compare that to Thompson. I first heard his name circulated at CPAC, when it seemed laughable. Three months after that, he raises more money in one month than the total amount raised by any one 2nd tier candidate. Starting from scratch.

That said, it illustrates a trap that the Thompson campaign has set for itself. No plausible number was high enough to meet the expectations. And that’s going to be part of the problem for him. He will never be as conservative as the hopes and dreams of his followers. He will never be as articulate as Reagan. He will never (or at least not for a while) have the fundraising apparatus of someone who has been running for President for 3-4 years. Etc. Etc. Etc.

People might cut him some slack if his followers didn’t present him as the savior…