Fred Thompson Speech, Brought To You By Ricola
OK….. My first thought…
GET THE MAN A COUGH DROP…..
I like Fred Thompson, I think he is a nice guy and was a pretty good Senator.
But watching the first 2/3rds of his address, all I could think of was how many times he kept clearing his throat. I know that this is more and issue of style than substance, but when you keep making noises that sound like you need a doctor throughout the address it does tend to detract.
The first part of the speech was I think pretty flat. He did not have the energy that I think most people expected and, while his tribute to the lifetime of service by Senator McCain was eloquent, it was hurt by the dry delivery and the frequent throat-clearing events.
Now, once he got towards the end, things did start to pick up. He seemed to finally get a shot of energy which gave him one heck of a closing and that did fire up the crowd. As with the Democratic convention, these kinds of speeches are more intended to rev up the party faithful than inspire the TV audience (such as with the Warner and Schweitzer addresses to the Democratic event).
However if done properly the speeches can do both, appealing to the party faithful and to the nation at large. Warner and Schweitzer did that (though to some degree I suppose that was a negative because they made some of us wish THEY were the ticket instead of Obama/Biden).
But the fact remains that those speeches were big pluses for the Democrats and Thompson had the chance to do this for the Republicans. Overall however I have to give a thumbs-down to the Thompson address on that count.