And. . . action! The much anticipated '08 White House campaign of Fred Dalton Thompson gets underway tonight in carefully choreographed fashion.
While you're watching the airing of FDT on Jay Leno, you can simultaneously log onto ImwithFred.com (soon to be renamed Fred08.com) at 12:01 am ET and see the ardent former Senator announce his candidacy for president in a webcast.
He'll be absent from Wednesday night's squabble among the Republican presidential candidates in New Hampshire but his presence will be felt when Fox News airs a Thompson ad focusing on his three pillars: Security, Unity, Prosperity. You can view the ad here: LINK
It's on to Iowa for Thompson on Thursday in what will be a critical 3 day swing through the nation's first caucus state. Thompson delivers 11:30 am ET remarks at the Polk County Convention Complex in Des Moines followed by a 7:00 pm ET meeting with residents at Bayliss Park in Council Bluffs. On Saturday, he'll make his way to New Hampshire for a couple of days of campaigning there.
In other news…we're waiting to see how/if the Senate Ethics Committee responds to the letter from Idaho Sen. Larry Craig's legal team arguing the Ethics Committee does not have any jurisdiction to investigate the senator for his arrest in a Minneapolis airport men's room. LINK
If you happened to miss ABC News Now's "Politics Live" today, Roll Call reporter David M. Drucker explained how Craig's Saturday morning misdial landed into the hands of the Capitol Hill publication.
"It fell into our lap,"Drucker recalled explaining how Craig had been calling a particular phone number for the past several weeks without leaving a message, a phone number which belonged to an acquaintance of Drucker.
"What are the odds?" Drucker added.
As for the rest of Thursday's events...
Mitt Romney raises campaign coin in New York and Washington DC. His Wife Ann does the same in Plano, Illinois. The Democratic Party in Massachusetts is hoping to discredit the former governor with a website RomneyFacts.com LINK
Rudy Giuliani in Minneapolis for a 12:15 pm ET visit with local residents in St. Paul, followed by a 5:30 pm ET trip to Illinois for a tour of a local business in Des Plaines.
John McCain appears on "Fox and Friends" at 7:00 am ET from Portsmouth, New Hampshire. After that John McCain attends a 10:00 am Armed Services Committee hearing on Capitol Hill.
Mike Huckabee follows McCain on "Fox and Friends" at 8:15 am ET. He then heads to New Hampshire for a full day of campaigning. Bloggers can tune in to a 10:00 am ET conference call and members of the more traditional media can dial in at 10:30 am ET
Tom Tancredo is in New Hampshire attends a 7:00 pm ET town hall meeting in Merrimack.
As for the Democrats...
Hillary Clinton speaks (in closed press fashion) to employees of JP Morgan and Goldman Sachs in New York. She also attends a 10:00 am ET Senate Armed Services Committee hearing to examine a report on the findings of the Iraqi Security Forces Independent Assessment Commission.
Barack Obama attends a town hall meeting in Las Vegas before heading out to San Francisco for a 9:30 pm ET $2,300/head fundraiser at the Spalding home.
To respond to charges he's too inexperienced to be president, Obama introduced new campaign rhetoric on Wednesday arguing that his years as a state senator in Illinois give him more legislative experience than Clinton and former Sen. John Edwards D-N.C., reports ABC News' Jonathan Greenberger. LINK
Edwards fundraises in New York before going to Portsmouth, NH for a 5:30 pm ET potluck and to put some phone banking time.
Bill Richardson is in California for a 12:00 pm ET fundraiser.
Joe Biden remain in Iraq.
President Bush continues his trip to Australia for the APEC Conference. He meets with the leader of the Australian Labor Party and then heads off to the Australian National Maritime Museum before meeting with the President of China.
The American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research (AEI) holds a 2:30 pm ET discussion on "'No Middle Way' in Iraq" with Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., Michael O'Hanlon of the Brookings Institution Army Gen. Jack Keane and others.
POLITICAL STORIES ON ABCNEWS.COM:
ABC News' Jonathan Greenberger "Obama on Dem Rivals 'I've Passed More Bills' LINK
ABC News' Jack Date and Theresa Cook "Congressman Found Dead at Home" LINK
ABC News' Jennifer Parker "Democrats Launch Anti-Romney Website" LINK
ABC News' Justin Rood "Want a Piece of Scandal History? It's Yours -- For a Price" LINK
ABC News' Jack Date and Theresa Cook "Chertoff 'Happy' to Stay Until the 'Very Last Day' LINK
ABC News John Cochran "Surviving a Scandal is All in the Timing" LINK
POLITICAL VIDEO ON ABCNEWS.COM:
Second Thoughts for Larry Craig LINK
John Edwards Campaigns Hard in Iowa LINK