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Tancredo Ready to Run

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Colorado’s own Rep. Tom Tancredo appears set to formally announce his bid for the White House in 2008. As the Rocky Mountain News reports:

Rep. Tom Tancredo will use Iowa talk radio on Monday to announce his plans for the 2008 presidential race, and all indications are that he’s moving full-steam ahead on a longshot White House bid.

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Tancredo’s “For A Secure America” exploratory committee surpassed the $1 million mark in fundraising last week, and he said that made it “certainly more likely” he would go forward with a full-fledged candidacy.

The official word is expected to come at 8 a.m. MST Monday, when Tancredo appears on the “Mickelson in the Morning” talk show on AM radio station 1040 WHO in DesMoines. Tancredo already is in Iowa in anticipation of that appearance.

Even Tancredo considers himself a longshot in a GOP field that includes former New York Gov. Rudy Giuliani, Sen. John McCain of Arizona, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and others. At this early stage, fundraising is a big part of the competition, and the front-runners are expected to report raising tens of millions of dollars through the first quarter of the year…

…Even if he announces a run for the White House, Tancredo might leave the fate of his 6th Congressional District seat up in the air. He said last week he had not decided whether he would run for re-election to Congress if he does not win the presidential nomination.

“Ask me after Super Tuesday,” Tancredo joked, referring to Feb. 5, 2008, when dozens of states are expected to hold early presidential primaries or caucuses.

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For those of you thinking, He can’t possibly believe that he has a chance, you’re absolutely right. Jake Plummer will be the starting centerfielder for the Colorado Rockies before Tom Tancredo is the President of the United States, and Tancredo knows this. But he has enough money to make a decent run at the Presidency, and if he does well enough in key states – say he comes in a close third – then he’ll be in position to get a big time administration job if a Republican eventually takes the White House. Tancredo is running in order to prove that he is popular enough to be considered for another job, like a cabinet position or an ambassadorship.

But Tancredo’s chances at the Presidency aren’t what matters here. What matters is the last two paragraphs of that Rocky Mountain News story, where Tancredo discusses whether he’ll run for re-election to his congressional seat. If Tancredo runs for re-election after likely getting drubbed as a Presidential candidate, then he’ll keep his seat in CD-6 (Littleton, Highlands Ranch) without much trouble. If he doesn’t run for re-election, and I hear that many Republicans don’t expect he will, then every Republican politician with a pulse will enter a primary to succeed him in 2008.

The early leaders in that clubhouse are state Senators Tom Wiens and Ted Harvey, and Wil Armstrong, the son of former U.S. Sen. Bill Armstrong. All three potential candidates have been planning potential congressional candidacies for months. Other potential candidates include Secretary of State Mike Coffman, former Lt. Gov. Jane Norton, state Rep. David Balmer and former state Sen. John Andrews.

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