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Fred Thompson: Tale of the Tape

Oct. 27 2008, Published 7:07 a.m. ET

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night's Republican debate is being described as a make-or-break moment for debate first-timer Fred Thompson. The Iron Eagle III star—whose poll numbers are surging in Iowa—is responding to the pressure by letting people know he's "probably a little rusty" while his opponents are "very smooth" because "they've had a lot of practice." But is this transparent pre-debate gambit really necessary? A string of slip-ups and sweaty train wrecks on Thompson's campaign route suggests that no one is worried about him looking too slick. Radar takes a look ...

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First impressions

The kick-off speech above was widely and understandably panned.

Gay gaffe

Claimed that "no state legislature in the nation" has passed legislation recognizing gay marriage. Well, no legislature other than the one governing the most populous state in the country.

More Thompson video clips after the jump!

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