Heart-ache: James Dobson says Fred! isn't a Christian

Or not his kind of Christian or not Christian “enough” or whatever. It’s this sort of thing that led me to support McCain, enthusiastically, in 2000.

Focus on the Family founder James Dobson appeared to throw cold water on a possible presidential bid by former Sen. Fred Thompson while praising former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, who is also weighing a presidential run, in a phone interview Tuesday.

“Everyone knows he’s conservative and has come out strongly for the things that the pro-family movement stands for,” Dobson said of Thompson. “[But] I don’t think he’s a Christian; at least that’s my impression,” Dobson added, saying that such an impression would make it difficult for Thompson to connect with the Republican Party’s conservative Christian base and win the GOP nomination.

Mark Corallo, a spokesman for Thompson, took issue with Dobson’s characterization of the former Tennessee senator. “Thompson is indeed a Christian,” he said. “He was baptized into the Church of Christ.”

In a follow-up phone conversation, Focus on the Family spokesman Gary Schneeberger stood by Dobson’s claim. He said that, while Dobson didn’t believe Thompson to be a member of a non-Christian faith, Dobson nevertheless “has never known Thompson to be a committed Christian—someone who talks openly about his faith.”

“We use that word—Christian—to refer to people who are evangelical Christians,” Schneeberger added. “Dr. Dobson wasn’t expressing a personal opinion about his reaction to a Thompson candidacy; he was trying to ‘read the tea leaves’ about such a possibility.”

If Rudy hangs around I’ve got a feeling Dobson’s going to read those leaves again and find that social-con Fred! is Christian enough after all. Dobson’s candidate of choice appears to be Newt, but Newt ain’t getting nominated so he can either warm up to Thompson or resign himself to an Inauguration Day that looks like this:


Thought he’d see it my way.

Given the choice between supporting a Dobson-approved “Christian” candidate or supporting Fred!, the Freepers make their choice.