Republican Thompson announces candidacy for US president on TV

Fred Thompson - veteran actor, former Republican senator - launched his bid for the US presidency in Hollywood style. "I'm running for president of the United States," Thompson told Jay Leno in a taped appearance on NBC's "Tonight Show" airing Wednesday night. Thompson called top opponents Rudy Giuliani and Mitt Romney formidable but added, "I think I will be, too" as he rejected the notion that he was getting into the race too late, only four months before the state-by-state voting to narrow down candidates begins. The national election is in November 2008.