Lou Dobbs for President? Don't laugh. After months of telling reporters that he "absolutely" would not consider leaving his highly-rated CNN show in which he crusades against free trade and illegal immigration, Mr. Dobbs posted a commentary on his Web site last week predicting a surprise new presidential candidate in 2008. The mystery candidate is an "independent populist . . . who understands the genius of this country lies in the hearts and minds of its people and not in the prerogatives and power of its elites."
Friends of Mr. Dobbs say he is seriously contemplating a race for the first time, although it's still unlikely. They spin a scenario under which the acerbic commentator would parachute into the race if Michael Bloomberg, the New York billionaire and favorite of East Coast elites, enters the field as an independent. With Hillary Clinton continuing to score badly in polls in the categories of honesty and integrity, and with the public's many doubts about Rudy Giuliani and other GOP contenders, Mr. Bloomberg may well see an opportunity to roil the political waters by entering the race late. If so, Mr. Dobbs then sees a niche for a "fourth-party" candidate who could paint the three other contenders as completely out of touch.