Thompson Announces New Campaign Staff

ABC News' Christine Byun Reports: The day before Republican candidate former Sen. Fred Thompson, R-Tenn., makes his '08 presidential debate debut, his campaign has formally announced a national team of senior advisors and surrogates.

Thompson's team includes mentor and former Tennessee Senator Howard Baker, former Senator Spencer Abraham, former Senator George Allen, and former state department official Liz Cheney, the daughter of Vice President Dick Cheney. Cheney and Abraham have been advising Thompson for a couple of months, and will officially serve as campaign co-chairs along with Allen.

Baker, who has advised Thompson through much of his political career, will act as honorary chairperson of the national campaign leadership team.In a statement, Thompson said: "These distinguished individuals bring wise counsel and invaluable experience to my campaign leadership team, and they will play a critical role in helping spread my consistent conservative message across America."Interestingly, Thompson's newly-announced team has presidential ties of their own.

Baker ran for the Republican nomination in 1980, but dropped out after losing both Iowa and New Hampshire.

Allen was a rumored 2008 GOP contender himself, but his presidential hopes were dashed during his Senate re-election campaign in 2006. Allen, the incumbent, lost to his Democratic opponent after a web video surfaced showing him using the word "macaca" to describe a campaign worker of Indian descent.

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