What You May Not Know About Fred Thompson
SURE, YOU KNOW THAT FRED THOMPSON IS A FAMOUS ACTOR AND WAS A SENATOR FROM TENNESSEE, BUT YOU MAY NOT KNOW . . .
1. Thompson, whose tough-on-crime image is key to his presidential aspirations, wasn't always in lock step with his Senate colleagues on anti-crime legislation. He led an unsuccessful effort in 2000 to derail Aimee's Law, which required states to keep rapists, murderers and molesters in prison for at least 85 percent of their sentences or pay a penalty if they committed the same crime elsewhere. Thompson argued that the measure was unfair to states. His colleagues disagreed, voting 90 to 5 to approve it.
2. Thompson loves to tell voters about his support of the right to bear arms, his lifetime membership in the National Rifle Association and his A grade from the gun lobby during his Senate career. Thompson, however, didn't join the NRA until 1994, the year he ran for political office -- the U.S. Senate -- for the first time. And recently he noted that he hadn't been hunting in a very long time.
3. President Bush's retreat is in Crawford, Tex. His father's is in Kennebunkport, Maine, and the Kennedys always had Cape Cod. Fred and Jeri Thompson prefer to escape to the Gulf Shore region of Alabama. They have repeatedly used a 7,600-square-foot house on Ono Island in the Gulf of Mexico that Thompson's close buddy Philip Martin owns. According to a profile in Pensacola Home and Garden magazine in 2006, the five-bedroom, six-bathroom island getaway features a private beach and dock, a conference room, a wine room, a game/exercise area, an outdoor pool, and an original Salvador Dali painting.
-- John Solomon