With the anticipated entry of Fred Thompson into the presidential race quite soon, it looks like it ought to become a very interesting race. As I've said before, I suspect that Thompson will crowd out much of the field on the right -- reducing it to largely a two-man race with the Mayor. In his typically interesting Saturday column, Novak notes that Giuliani is getting important help from the New Jersey GOP:
WASHINGTON -- Supporters of Rudy Giuliani for president are changing New Jersey's longtime proportional representation rules for allocating national convention delegates to winner-take-all, seeking a coup to give the former New York City mayor the lion's share of the state's 52 votes.
A June 14 meeting of New Jersey's Republican State Central Committee is expected to adopt a Feb. 5 presidential primary procedure giving the first-place finisher all three delegates in each of the state's 13 House districts, and the statewide leader all 13 at-large delegates. In the past, delegates were divided among candidates according to their share of the vote (as in 1980, when Ronald Reagan and George Bush split New Jersey).
Giuliani's Jersey coup is engineered by his liberal supporters in the state allied with David Von Savage, conservative Republican chairman of Cape May County (also backing him for president).
Thompson meanwhile, is bringing on board Larry Lindsey -- who engineered George Bush's economic platform in the year 2000 -- which earned high praise from supply-siders and fiscal conservatives:
Lawrence Lindsey, George W. Bush's issues adviser in the 1999-2000 run-up to his presidential candidacy, is poised to play a similar role in Fred Thompson's imminent campaign.
A former Harvard economics professor and Federal Reserve governor, Lindsey was National Economics Council director in the Bush administration's first two years. He was fired following the 2002 elections after accurately predicting the cost of the Iraq war.
A footnote: Longtime Washington power broker Tom Korologos, who completed his service as U.S. ambassador to Belgium in February, is also expected to join Thompson's campaign.
Read the rest of the column for Democratic delays on Bush's nominations, and possible retirements in the House GOP.