From NBC/NJ's Carrie Dann
WEST DES MOINES, Iowa -- Despite swirling rumors that Fred Thompson may be on the verge of dropping out of the presidential race if he performs poorly in tonight's caucus, the senator from Tennessee urged supporters today to pull off a bombshell victory in Iowa.
"Let's go out and shock the world," he bellowed to a cheering crowd of about at a hotel in West Des Moines this morning. "Let's do something great for our country!"
At times uncharacteristically enthusiastic, Thompson spoke optimistically about his positive momentum in the state. "The crowds have been better and better and better, and enthusiasm is building and building and building," he told a crowd of about 200 at a hotel in West Des Moines. "We're going to have a wonderful day and a wonderful night."
Thompson's poll numbers in Iowa have slid dramatically in recent months as voters and pundits alike have questioned his fervor for the office. But he insisted today that he believes in his capacity to be the president who leads America into a better future. "I'd be less than honest with you if I didn't think I believe I am that man," he said with a flourishing crescendo. "And with your help I will be that man."