Infobox US Cabinet official
name=Tommy George Thompson
title=Secretary of Health and Human Services
February 2, 2001
January 26, 2005
George W. Bush
birth_date=birth date and age|1941|11|19
University of Wisconsin-Madison
Governor of Wisconsin
January 5, 1987
February 1, 2001
Tommy George Thompson (born
November 19, 1941), a United States politician, was the 42nd Governor of Wisconsin and the 7th U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services. Thompson was a candidate for the 2008 U.S. Presidential Election, but dropped out early after a poor performance in polls such as the Iowa Straw Poll. [cite web |url=http://customwire.ap.org/dynamic/stories/T/TOMMY_THOMPSON_2008?SITE=WIMIL&SECTION=POLITICS&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT&CTIME=2007-08-13-11-36-42
title="Tommy Thompson drops presidential bid"
Thompson was born in
Elroy, Wisconsin, where his father, Allen, ran and owned a gas stationand country grocery store, and his mother, Julia, was a teacher. [ [http://www.wargs.com/political/thompsont.html Ancestry of Tommy Thompson ] ] He is a former Captain in the United States Armyand United States Army Reserve, and holds a law degree from the University of Wisconsin Law School.
Thompson was elected to the Wisconsin State Assembly in 1966, became assistant Assembly minority leader in 1973, and Assembly minority leader in 1981.  He was famous for aggressively utilizing parliamentary procedure to give his minority party some limited say in the legislative process. Since this use of procedure was invariably one of delay and obstruction he soon received the nickname "Dr. No" by the frustrated majority.
Governor of Wisconsin
From 1987 to 2001, Thompson served as the 42nd Governor of Wisconsin, having been elected to an unprecedented four terms.
Thompson's initiatives during his 14 years as governor of
Wisconsinwere his Wisconsin Works welfare reformand school choiceprograms. [ [http://www.wisconsinhistory.org/highlights/archives/2008/05/w2.asp Highlights at the Wisconsin Historical Society ] ] In 1990 Thompson pushed for the creation of the country's first parental school-choice program, allowing low-income Milwaukee families to send children to the private or public school of their choice at taxpayer expense. He also created the BadgerCareprogram, designed to provide health coverage to those families whose employers don't provide health insurance but make too much money to qualify for Medicaid. Through the federal waiver program, Thompson helped replicate this program in several states when he became Secretary of Health and Human Services.
From 1998 to 1999, he served as president of the
Council of State Governmentsand, with the organization's chairman, Senator Kenneth McClintock, the nonvoting member from Puerto Rico, led a top-level delegation to the People's Republic of China.Thompson left office when he was appointed by President George W. Bushas HHS Secretary. He was also a member of the Amtrak Board of Directorsand had an Acela locomotivenamed for him. [cite web |url=http://www.hhs.gov/news/speech/2001/011101.html
title="Amtrak A. Vital Link in America's Transportation Future"
United States Department of Health and Human Services
accessdate=2007-10-19 ] [ [http://www.hebners.net/amtrak/amtGEN42_169_183.html Pictures of P42 Genesis #182] ] [ [http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m1215/is_9_202/ai_78840332 Claytor award] ]
Ed Thompson, the mayor of Tomah, Wisconsin, was the Libertarian Party candidate in the 2002Wisconsin gubernatorial election.
Health and Human Services Secretary
Thompson announced his resignation from HHS on
December 3, 2004, and served until January 26, 2005, when the Senate confirmed his successor, Michael O. Leavitt.
2008 Presidential campaign
After first announcing the formation of an
exploratory committeein late 2006, Thompson announced his candidacy for the 2008 presidential election on April 1, 2007. [cite web |url=http://abcnews.go.com/Video/playerIndex?id=2998796
title="GOP's Tommy Thompson Enters '08 Race"
news = This Week with George Stephanopoulos
American Broadcasting Company
During a May 3,
2007, presidential debate at the Ronald Reagan Presidential LibraryThompson said in response to a question from moderator Chris Matthewsthat a private employer opposed to homosexualityshould have the right to fire a gay worker. [ [http://www.jsonline.com/watch/?watch=22&date=5/04/2007&id=23039 Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel: JS Online: PoliticsWatch ] ] He said, "I think that is left up to the individual business. I really sincerely believe that that is an issue that business people have got to make their own determination as to whether or not they should be." He called CNNthe following morning to say he didn't hear the question correctly. He apologized, saying, "It's not my position. There should be no discriminationin the workplace."
Thompson had stated he would drop out of the race if he did not finish either first or second in the
Ames straw pollon August 11, 2007. Thompson finished sixth, with just 7% of the vote, despite the fact that some major contenders were not competing in the poll. On August 12, Thompson officially announced he would drop out of the race.
In October 2007, Thompson endorsed
Rudy Giuliani. Thompson told the Associated Press in a statement that "Rudy Giuliani has shown that he is a true leader. He can and will win the nomination and the presidency. He is America's mayor, and during a period of time of great stress for this country he showed tremendous leadership."He has since endorsed Senator John McCainafter Giuliani's withdrawal from the presidential race. [ [http://wisconsin.johnmccain.com/Content/Default.aspx?area=wisconsin+Leaders&PageName=Wisconsin+Leaders John McCain 2008 ] ]
Thompson is the President of
Logistics Health Incorporated. He also is senior partner at Akin Gump, a Washington, D.C., law firm, and is a senior adviser at the consulting firm Deloitte and the chairman of the Deloitte Center for Health Solutions. [ [http://www.deloitte.com/dtt/employee_profile/0,1007,sid%253D80772%2526cid%253D86217,00.html?wt.mc_id=w Bio: Tommy Thompson, Deloitte Center for Health Solutions] ] Thompson taught a class in the fall of 2005 at the Kennedy School of Governmenton medical diplomacy. [Thompson, Tommy G. [http://www.boston.com/news/globe/editorial_opinion/oped/articles/2005/10/24/the_cure_for_tyranny/ "The cure for tyranny"] " Boston Globe", October 24, 2005]
Shortly after leaving his Bush Cabinet post, Thompson joined and served for two years on the board of directors of
Applied Digital Solutions, makers of the controversial VeriChip: a glass-encapsulated RFIDchip that can be injected into human flesh for various database-driven identification purposes.
Thompson currently serves on the board of Directors for Pure Bioscience Inc. (PURE.OB) that is in the process of introducing a revolutionary new class of non-toxic antimicrobial/disinfectant based on silver dihydrogen citrate (SDC). Thompson also serves on the Board of Trustees of the non-profit,
Medical Missions for Childrenand is the co-host for their television series, "Plain Talk About Health". [ [http://www.mmissions.org/mmc/board.html Medical Missions for Children Board of Trustees] ]
Thompson also serves as a Senior Advisor to
Capital Partners, associated with McKinley Reserve, a Wisconsin corporation with ties to both Hilbert, WIand Dubai.
He is also the National Policy Advisor to U.S. Preventive Medicine [ [http://www.uspreventivemedicine.com/Press-Room/USPM-Press-Kit.html USPM Press Kit] ]
After leaving office, Thompson promoted changes to Medicare that some complained would benefit companies Thompson has a financial stake in (including Centene and the Deloitte Center for Health Solutions). [ [http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/08/07/AR2006080701088.html Washington Post: Thompson's Medicaid Reforms Benefit His Employers] ]
Additionally, while in office, Thompson was involved in a dispute over whether the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services had to share cost estimates to Congress for legislation that would create a prescription drug benefit. Critics accused HHS of downplaying the true cost of the law by $150 billion. CMS Administrator Tom Scully threatened to fire the actuary if he revealed to Congress his estimate. Investigators determined that the data was improperly hidden from Congress, but did not conclude whether laws had been broken. [ [http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?sec=health&res=9B02E0D9143BF934A35754C0A9629C8B63 New York Times: Top Medicare Official Threatened Actuary] ]
tatements about Jews, Israel
April 2007, Thompson apologized for publicized remarks he made while speaking to an assembled crowd of Jewish social activistsin Washington, D.C.[http://www.politico.com/blogs/jonathanmartin/0407/T_Thompson_Apologizes_For_Jewish_Remark.html Jonathan Martin, "T. Thompson Apologizes For Jewish Remark", Politico, April 17, 2007] ] On April 18, 2007, appearing before a conference organized by the Religious Action Centerof Reform Judaism, Thompson made reference to his lucrative transition from public service to the private sector by stating: "You know that's sort of part of the Jewish tradition and I do not find anything wrong with that." [http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/04/16/AR2007041601082.html Frederic J. Frommer, "Thompson Apologizes for Comments", Washington Post (Associated Press), April 16, 2007] ] After the conclusion of his address, Thompson was reportedly pulled aside privately by the RAC’s Rabbi David Saperstein, and then returned to the podium to issue a clarification, [http://www.forward.com/blogs/campaign-confidential/tommy-thompson-earning-money-is-part-of-the-jewis/ Tommy Thompson: “Earning Money” Is “Part of the Jewish Tradition”, Forward.com, April 16, 2007] ] adding: "I just want to clarify something because I didn't (by) any means want to infer or imply anything about Jews and finances and things. What I was referring to, ladies and gentlemen, is the accomplishments of the Jewish religion. You've been outstanding business people and I compliment you for that."
Later, Thompson told The Politico that his remarks could be blamed on fatigue and a persistent cold. [ [http://www.politico.com/blogs/jonathanmartin/0407/T_Thompson_Apologizes_For_Jewish_Remark.html The Politico] ]
Thompson made a variety of other lesser comments, including referring to the
Anti Defamation Leagueas the fringe Jewish Defense League, Israel bondsas "Jewish bonds". [http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/pages/rosnerBlog.jhtml?itemNo=849067 Shmuel Rosner, "Friendly advice to American candidates trying to woo the Jewish vote", Haaretz, April 17, 2007] ] [http://www.jta.org/cgi-bin/iowa/breaking/101208.html Candidate: Making money part of Jewish tradition, Jewish Telegraphic Agency, April 16, 2007] ] [http://www.jsonline.com/story/index.aspx?id=591756 Craig Gilbert, "Thompson apologizes to Jews for comments", Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, April 16, 2007] ] He also discussed his connections to conservative Israeli and Jewish leaders to the mostly left-leaning activist group.
Conference organizers avoided comment on the gaffes, instead praising Thompson's decision to appear before the group. [http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/849062.html Shmuel Rosner, "Republican presidential hopeful Thompson: Money-making part of Jewish tradition", Haaretz, April 16, 2007] ]
Politicizing of science
2001, Nobel laureate physiologist Torsten Wieselwas nominated by Gerald Keusch(then an employee of HHS: director of the Fogarty International Center, the branch of the National Institutes of Health) for a position on an advisory panel in the National Institutes of Healthto advise on assisting research in developing countries. Thompson, who at the time was Secretary of Health and Human Services, rejected Wiesel. Thompson's office rejected 19 of 26 nominations and in return sent résumés for other scientists that his employee Keusch described in an interview as "lightweights" with "no scientific credibility". When Weisel's name was rejected, an official in Thompson's office told Keusch that Wiesel had "signed too many full-page letters in The New York Times critical of President Bush." This incident was cited by the advocacy group Union of Concerned Scientistsas part of a report detailing their allegations of President George W. Bush's abuse of science.cite journal |author=Emma Marris |title=Bush accused of trying to foist favourites on health agency |journal=Nature |volume=430 |issue=281 |year=2004 |doi=10.1038/430281a |date=14 July 2004 |url=http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v430/n6997/full/430281a.html |pages=281] cite book |title=Undermining Science: Suppression and Distortion in the Bush Administration |author=Seth Shulman |year=2007 |publisher=University of California Press]
1998 Race for Governor
* Tommy Thompson (R) (inc.), 60%
Ed Garvey(D), 39%
1994 Race for Governor
* Tommy Thompson (R) (inc.), 67%
Chuck Chvala(D), 31%
1990 Race for Governor
* Tommy Thompson (R) (inc.), 58%
* Tom Loftus (D), 42%
1986 Race for Governor
* Tommy Thompson (R), 53%
Tony Earl(D) (inc.), 46%
* [http://www.whitehouse.gov/government/thompson-bio.html Biography] from the
* [http://www.logisticshealth.com/aboutlhi/tthompson.html Logistics Health Incorporated]
;Documentaries, topic pages and databases
* [http://herndon1.sdrdc.com/cgi-bin/can_detail/P60003795 Federal Election Commission - Tommy G. Thompson (President)] campaign finance reports
* [http://senate.ontheissues.org/Tommy_Thompson.htm On the Issues - Tommy Thompson] issue positions and quotes
* [http://www.pbs.org/newshour/vote2008/primaries/candidates/thompson.html PBS NewsHour with Jim Lehrer - Vote 2008: Tommy Thompson]
* [http://www.vote-smart.org/bio.php?can_id=21738 Project Vote Smart - Tommy G. Thompson]
* [http://www.wisconsinhistory.org/turningpoints/tp-060/ "Tommy Thompson and the Conservative Revolution"] ; primary source material compiled by the
Wisconsin Historical Society
* [http://www.marquette.edu/library/collections/archives/Mss/TGT/TGTmain.htm Tommy G. Thompson Collection, 1957- [ongoing] Special Collections & Archives,
Marquette University(archive of materials donated by Thompson and others)
* [http://topics.nytimes.com/top/reference/timestopics/people/t/tommy_g_thompson/index.html New York Times - Tommy G. Thompson] news stories and commentary
*Skiba, Katherine M. [http://www.jsonline.com/story/index.aspx?id=404311 "Mr. Thompson goes corporate"] "
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel", February 25, 2006
Governor of Wisconsin
years=1987 - 2001
Scott McCallumU.S. Secretary box
department=Secretary of Health and Human Services
George W. Bush
years=2001 - 2005
Michael O. Leavitt
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