In comments on the Waiting for Fred post, Chuck noted: "I like what Fred says, but I have my doubts that he would be an effective president."
Without knowing Chuck's definition of "effective", it's impossible to reply. My definition of "effective" is rather simple. Appoint strict constructionists to the bench and propose budgets that balance and represent no more than 18-20% of the GDP.
By my standard, President Bush has been fairly effective. The deficits incurred are owed to a one off event and are coming to an end. His court appointments have been as good as the pool of available candidates allows.
I realize that my definition of effective is simplistic and may suffer from the soft bigotry of low expectations but I don't see McCain and Giuliani making it over even the low hurdle. I find McCain's alliance with Feingold in the passage of an act designed to provide cover for his involvement in the Keating scandal, coupled with his love of the camera and enjoyment of his 'maverick' (should be 'loose cannon') status to be simply ludicrous. Giuliani's lack of adherence to the concepts embodied in the Bill of Rights combined with his new "growth" regarding his positions on a u-pickem list of issues make belief that his appointments to the bench would be (IMO) satisfactory, impossible.
That leaves Romney and Thompson, and of the two, Thompson is more apt to beat Miz Clinton than Romney. I realize that's not a ringing endorsement or a clarion call but as The Shadow of the Beast creeps accross the land I'm sure to do better.