Former Wisconsin Governor Tommy Thompson brought his presidential campaign back to Iowa today. Thompson says the Republican discontent with their party’s presidential candidates bodes well for him. Thompson says the Republicans lost control on the national level after becoming the party of big spenders, and Thompson say his record as governor will show Republicans he’s a "reliable conservative."
Thompson says with the Democrats controlling both house of the Wisconsin legislature, he vetoed over eight billion dollars in spending proposals and six billion dollars in tax increases, and no other presidential candidate can come close to that. Thompson visited the Iowa statehouse today where he criticized Democrat legislators for voting to raise the cigarette tax in Iowa. Thompson says the Iowa Democrats are "intellectually dishonest" for saying their goal in raising the cigarette tax is to reduce smoking, when they don’t use the new tax revenue solely for smoking cessation programs.
Thompson says to be intellectually honest, you’d use the money to help smokers quit, but Thompson says the Democrats have raised taxes to expand state government, and says he’s proud of Republicans for standing up and saying "that’s wrong." Thompson says he has a good record for holding the line on government spending.
Thompson says if you look at his record you will see he works on a bipartisan basis, but will stand his ground. Thompson say he is a conservative that has vetoed every tax increase brought up by the Democrats and he says he doesn’t know of any other candidate that can say that. Thompson does admit however some fee increases were approved during his 14 years as governor.