They’d hoped for $5 million in June. They’ll end up with $3 million for June and July, due in part to voters’ passions cooling as Fred drags his feet on getting in. NBC claims the formal announcement is set tentatively for September 4th in Nashville but can they really wait that long if donations are already down? Probably: it seems the social cons are in love, Mitt’s prodigious fundraising notwithstanding.

That’s not the only scoop from NBC:

Some sources describe the role of the presumed candidate’s wife, Jeri, as vast and powerful. Sources say “she’s integrally involved in every decision” and that Fred Thompson has “set it up so everything goes through her.” Critically, that was cast as “running it like a congressional campaign” and from the “kitchen table.”…

At present, those close to the planning say Jeri is involved in hiring, salaries, schedule, office assignments at the two headquarters, and small details like the color of bumper stickers. Some sources defend her, adding that “it’s easy to say she’s controlling things.” Sources describe that she, like many in Washington, knows many people in politics. They acknowledge Jeri meets with and interviews senior staff candidates and is clearly a key adviser.

I’m not sure how that shakes out vis-a-vis her bogus image as a trophy wife. If they don’t want people knowing how big a role she plays then the trophy wife nonsense is a welcome smokescreen. But … why wouldn’t they want people to know? Does it hurt his image as large and in charge if it looks like his wife is stage-managing him?

Take that as your exit question. Then scroll down to the end of this Carl Cameron piece and see for yourself just how much influence she allegedly has.

Update: “You are not a real conservative, sir!”

Update: See-Dubya attributes the cash falloff to the slowdown in Fred’s radio commentaries, which haven’t had a new entry since July 3rd.

Update: Hmmm.

The day after his would-be campaign manager was replaced, Ex-Sen. Fred Thompson has another senior staff position to refill.

J.T. Mastranadi was hired just a week and a half ago to be the campaign’s director of research. He resigned this morning, a friend of his said. The friend said that Mastranadi was “fed up” with the “lack of structure” and was unclear about his role in the coming campaign.