His head hunched and his voice dry and cracking, Ex-Sen. Fred Thompson told evangelical activists today that the death of one daughter and the birth of another reconciled his heart with his head about abortion.
"My political record and my head were always there, always has been there, but I must say that it took life's experiences for me to absorb the real importance of it all. I had been blessed early in my life when I was young...and I have been blessed when I was not so young. I've had thethe ultimate tragedy that a father can have and the ultimate blessing that a father can gave.
With regard to Ms. Hayden, I can only say that after the first time in my life, seeing the sonogram of my own child. I will never think exactly the same again. I will never feel exactly the same again. Because my heart now is fully engaged with my head."
Later, to a standing ovation, Thompson said that in the first hour of his administration, "I would go into the Oval Office and close the door and pray for the wisdom to do what is right."
Here are his applause lines:
"We've been together for a long time, We've not always agreed on perhaps the right approach to everything, but the goal has been the same."
"Our basic rights come from God, and not from any government."
"Our people have shed more blood than any nation in the history of the world."
"I'm proud to have been a consistent conservative, cutting taxes, balancing the budget, reducing regulation, promoting welfare reform, fighting for good conservative judges with a100 percent pro-life voting record, and I'm proud of that record."
** Had praise for John Roberts and Sam Alito
** Described his proposed constitutional amendment to prevent judges in one state from recognizing another state's same-sex marriage laws.
** Called entitlement reform a moral issue
** Predicted that the "struggle against radical Islam" would be "long" and arduous.