http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070626...on_lobbying;_ylt=AuiDLgvWHVgpzzbOcLFk6AwE1vAI NASHVILLE, Tenn. - Fred Thompson, a likely Republican presidential candidate, on Tuesday defended his work as a Washington lobbyist, telling The Associated Press that lobbying is an important part of life because "government's got their hands in everything." The actor and former U.S. senator from Tennessee added, "Nobody yet has pointed out any of my clients that didn't deserve representation." Thompson, who likes to cast himself as a political outsider, earned more than $1 million lobbying the federal government for more than 20 years. He lobbied for a savings-and-loan deregulation bill that helped hasten the industry's collapse and a failed nuclear energy project that cost taxpayers more than a billion dollars. He also was a lobbyist for deposed Haitian President Jean-Bertrand Aristide, who was widely criticized for endorsing "necklacing," the gruesome practice of execution where gasoline-soaked tires are thrown over a person's neck and set ablaze.