Saturday, January 21, 2012

Will Gingrich Self-Destruct?

Gingrich 2012

Nothing could be more ridiculous than emotionally imbalanced, illogical and prejudicial attacks like this:

kederNewt SchlicterNEwt

@KurtSchlichter is always so delightfully sublime, sarcastic and smarmy that I’m willing to accept that he is only playing one of his many Twitter persona’s.  But even if that were so, there are dozens of similar tweets including from the disgraced professional scandal snuffer -  Ari Fleischer - saying the same.  Newt will disintegrate and ruin the GOP. (Hmm. Where have I heard that before?)

I’m always alert to the hidden motives in people like this who demonstrate sensational screeds devoid of demonstrable fact.  As Ron Paul might sound like they are a bit “overly sensitive.” Now whether this is because they can’t face the weakness of their own favorite who might be loosing, or worse – they are being paid to have this opinion – they embarrass themselves more than the candidate they are attacking when these arguments lack basis in fact.

CrotchetyCoffeeBird250x251 Once again I need to give you the bird. Of truth.  So there can be some balance to counteract these hacks.  I am desperate for SOMEONE to give me FACTS (instead of conjecture) on why NOT to support Gingrich.  So you show me where I’m wrong if you can.

The arguments against Newt I presume are three fold:

A. He’s a secret big government liberal,
B. He can’t be trusted
C. He can’t win against Obama.

First, the marital trust thing.  Don Wildmon, (reportedly) the late Jerry Falwell and Tim LaHaye have walked through the televangelist scandals and fiercely attacked other duplicitous wolves in shepherd’s clothing.  All know Newt and vouch – as do his daughters forcefully – that he is a changed man.  The fact Romney backer – Bob McDonnell publicly is defending Gingrich against these charges as well, should put this to rest for the reasonable and intelligent observer.  No one has ever excused Gingrich of integrity in voting on legislation contrary to a campaign promise as Romney did in pledging no new taxes and then welcoming the spirit of Ted Kennedy into his soul in his single term as Governor.  I do understand those who favor Santorum however. Even despite his misjudgment in ignoring his core principles and endorsing a pro-abortion Senator in the ghoulish form of Arlen Specter that ended up being the 60th vote on ObamaCare.  But at least true, he is faithful to his wife.  That’s a good great thing.

RickGrin The “big government” liberal thing to me however is inexplicable.  Anyone who believes Earmark Defender Extraordinaire has a MORE conservative record by voting for No Child Left Behind, Medicare D, numerous tax hikes and a SOPA endorsement is just (fill in the disparaging remark of your choice here).  And on the issue of “electability” how the heck is someone who keeps putting the explosive issues of gay marriage before economic reform EVER going to inspire a nation to follow him? The social conservatives with whom he is supposed to be a “lock” don’t even go for him as a majority.  He’s not terribly far apart from Gingrich on policy (even though much weaker on his economic plan,) but what evidence is there that he can lead much less get elected?  I don’t see any evidence that he is anything other than a crap shoot.  His line about getting elected in a “blue state” seems a bit less compelling in light of an 18 point loss 5 years ago by people that knew him intimately for 14 years.

Which leads us to Mitt.  The man on record as saying (to the abortion lobby just 10 years ago) that he would be a stealth candidate for them and would “moderate the GOP.”  How do you ever know FOR SURE if he has honestly changed or is just playing a role after saying that?  His own wife says that he can argue both sides of an argument so convincingly you don’t know what he is really for.  So a guy who lied just weeks ago (still) about what his book said about ObamaCare; declared less than a year ago said he would keep “some” of ObamaCare; who, when actually was IN government, and who implemented the most far reaching liberal healthcare program and gay marriage statues in HISTORY is more conservative?  Ridiculous.  Is he more electable?  I personally can’t see how.  Obama has made it clear his strategy is class warfare.  On EVERY conservative issue, Romney does not have a clear differentiation from Obama.  He exorbitantly raised taxes and government spending in his 3 years as Governor and actually IMPLEMENTED Cap and Trade. (I say three years since he was campaigning for president 220 days his last year in office.)  Even the Bible says you know someone by what they DO rather than by what they say.

So let’s look at Gingrich and evidence that he is some crazed, out of control, Rosie O’Donnell in pants (is that redundant?).

1. The Company they Keep.

Gingrich1 Gingrich has the highest ACU ratings of his congressional endorsements – Romney the least.  Santorum?  The fact he has NO endorsements is pretty damning.  I would be happy to counter this argument with the Nikki Haley endorsement were it not that Romney’s PAC contributed money (coincidently of course) two weeks prior to her endorsement.  Isn’t it odd that nearly every congressional member of the RINO “establishment GOP” is endorsing Romney and yet somehow we are to believe Newt is “big government?” Something here doesn’t add up.  At least to those who have had a class in critical thinking or mathematics.

The “volatile” and “unpredictable” argument certainly fits Mr. “adultery leads to bestiality” Santorum, but correspondingly libels very reputable Gingrich-endorsers like former Reagan National Security Advisor Bud Macfarlane and, the defender of his father’s legacy, Michael Reagan.  Thomas Sowell isn’t known for making rash judgments or keeping company with those that do (save his BFF Rush Limbaugh) and if this was SUCH a danger, would they really take such a chance?  Unlike Romney we know Gingrich doesn’t have the money to buy off principled conservatives like that.  Certainly a former hyper-grounded military guy such as Macfarlane would understand political ramifications having walked through Ollie North and Iran Contra.

Meanwhile, only 8 or 9 years ago LIBERAL DEMOCRATS were endorsing Mitt Romney and he was endorsing them back.  Hmmm.

Well let’s move on to actual HISTORY to see if there is evidence for Gingrich to “self-destruct.”

2. The Gingrich History of Self Destruction

youngnewt First you have that whole Conservative Opportunity Society where he would rant and rave to lonely CSPAN cameras all hours of the night.  Against liberalism and communism.  He’s crazy and out of control!!  But founding members admit, that 14 year effort would never have yielded the results of a GOP takeover congress without his leadership, tactics and strategy.

However, because Houstonians have habitually (and inexplicably) re-elected Sheila Jackson Lee time and again, we can’t just look at longevity in Congress to prove that there is any reverse correlation with self-destructive tendencies.  After all, don’t we keep hearing how awful Gingrich was disdained by his peers?  Perhaps someone who was actually THERE should comment.  Like the late, great Tony Blankley who worked for Gingrich:

Thus, Romney received the endorsement of the GOP political types -- congressmen and former congressmen. Now they are doubling down on their early bet and are out telling reporters that Gingrich was never much of a leader and never got much done.

Curious. I remember most of them enthusiastically following his leadership year after year as the Republican whip from 1989-1994. It was the most successful congressional opposition movement since Benjamin Disraeli formed the modern Conservative Party in Britain in the mid-19th century. And after the GOP took back the House for the first time in 40 years (and the Senate, too, by the way), Gingrich's four years as speaker proved to be the most productive, legislative congressional years since at least 1965 to 1967, and they were led by Lyndon B. Johnson from the White House. Working against -- and with -- Democratic President Bill Clinton, we passed into law most of the Contract with America, welfare reform, telecommunications reform (which ushered in the modern cell phone and Internet age), we had the first balanced budget since before the Vietnam War, we cut taxes and lowered unemployment to under 5 percent.

Just who the heck do all these wizard political pros think managed all that? It wasn't us clever staffers or many of the now grumbling GOP K Street crowd. We helped, but Gingrich led. I admit Gingrich's methods were not orthodox. He modified the seniority committee chairman system and picked the best members for the key posts. More than a few feathers got ruffled.

It is worth the read to hear the amazing strategies Gingrich used to get things done despite not even being able to count on members of his own party members for votes on the legislation that propelled them into a majority.  They will be studying what this guy has done for centuries.

NewtSketch But wasn’t he “thrown out” by his own party?  Let’s go back in time shall we?  Back in the day, he alienated establishment Republicans like John Sununu who demanded Gingrich allow the GOP to go back on campaign promises written on the lips of George Herbert Walker Bush.  Many felt Gingrich was not “reasonable enough” for not just going along with the big government political necessities as they saw it.  Then, during the Clinton years, Democrats launched the precursor to this year’s nomination napalm negatives by charging Gingrich with 84 counts of ethics violations and giving the public (and his co-legislators) the impression that he couldn’t get anything done.  Of course he was cleared of EVERY SINGLE ONE of these charges, but like the Herman Cain stuff – no one can really EVER would know until all the investigation was complete whether it was true or not.  So Gingrich resigned because of GOP leaders who wouldn’t follow and support him.  He certainly could have fought for his position but pulled a Perry.  Considering that THAT group ended up moderating the GOP agenda to the point that George Bush racked up $3 Trillion in debt, No Child Left Behind, Senior Drug Care and lost Congress it’s not like they did any better without him.  Can anyone name a conservative program besides tax cuts passed since Newt? 

VinWebberGingrich And of his supposed “bombast”?  Let’s hear from someone who was with him since 1981 (Gingrich arrived 2 years earlier) and was part of the entire wild ride.  This was PBS Frontline interview of Vin Webber was in the final years of Newt’s Speakership.  When you read of the strategy and challenge of navigating the GOP Establishment, the liberal GOP members, and the tenacity to pass Reagan’s conservative agenda you can’t help but be a bit in awe.  But the man who as the former Congressman from Minnesota addressed these very charges against Newt back then:

Q: Some say that Newt has contributed to this phase of nasty politics because in his early days he was an attack dog and a bomb thrower. And he wanted to shake things up and go after the establishment. Do you think that's a fair criticism?

Weber: I'm sure there's substance to that. That's a very difficult question. On the one hand, it certainly is true that he is a genuinely historic figure, the first Republican speaker in forty years, really the first speaker maybe ever, credited for bringing his party to majority status. That makes him an historic figure. And it's also true that part of that helped to [ration] up the level of instability in the political discourse.

On the other hand, he's quite right in saying, if you asked him, the Democratic Party was quite solidified and you almost needed a stick of dynamite to dislodge them. We could still be sitting there in the minority if he had not told us that we had to wake up and shake up the Democratic majority. It's very difficult to draw that fine line exactly in the right place. Be ready to shake up the Republican minority and get them to understand that they must shake off this minority party mind-set, that they must challenge the Democrats in several serious ways without crossing the line into the personal?

I think that if you actually read the things that he said, I can intellectually defend everything that he said. But I understand that the atmospherics were quite poisonous and probably did some damage to the atmosphere in the House of Representatives. Could we have done it differently? Probably not.

polar opposite man Funny how we have these idealized versions of history.  It reminds me of the women that want a sensitive man, but one who takes control.  Someone who is ambitious and wealthy but wants him home at 5 pm and on weekends.  And someone who will listen for hours to every inane thought the woman has but also have a keen self-identity and confidence.  (And to any past females in PolitiJim’s life – YES, I am talking about you.)

Ironically, many of the complaints about Gingrich were because of his military style leadership that seemed out of place for a Congressman.  In the above article Vin Webber states he believe Gingrich would make a very good President.  (For those of you who still think it is a negative to be like FDR, you may want to read the understanding that Webber and Gingrich had of the reference.  That means you Glenn Beck.)  And that was what scared the bejesus out of the Democrats with Gingrich as Speaker.  Even according to TIME magazine, he had usurped the role of the Presidency from Clinton.

IndyDayWHExplode So you want to replace Obama. Good.  You want to replace entitlements and vaporize government waste. Very, very good.  You want someone who will have conviction and resist the assaults of the opposition as well as the seductions of the establishment.  I got news for ya.  That ain’t Mitt Romney and I’d like to see ANY EVIDENCE where he has resisted any “big” liberal government plan where it wasn’t in his political best interest to do so.  I’m not talking talk. I’m talking action. 

Santorum?  I admit he has conviction.  He also would be “son of Clinton” in making his first legislative action a social engineering attempt at gay marriage, abortion or some other GOOD issue and kill chances for big economic reform as Clinton did with his first action being gays in the military.  He said so in the debate!

What we need is simple.  Strategy and balls.

GeneralDouglasMacArthur MacArthur and Patton didn’t become great military leaders because they reached a consensus.  Wilberforce and Churchill didn’t make the most of their political leadership by trying to “get along” and not raise waves.  Great leaders are complex characters.  There is always a fine line of having the confidence and courage to do the heroic while avoiding the the appeal of going overboard.  We are told that the biting and clawing of young tigers teaches them this very thing.  Gingrich has certainly learned a thing or two by living through the Reagan and Clinton political wars first hand.  We honestly don’t KNOW how Santorum or Romney would do.  This isn’t a for profit job like Bain or the Olympics where your word is immediately obeyed, and it sure ain’t managing 20 people in a Senate office.

The idea that Gingrich would say something stupid leads me to believe these Tweeters were one of those knock kneed numbskulls afraid to tell Mr. Gorbachev, to “Tear Down that Wall.”

It is Santorum most likely to say something so stupid that our society would stop all support of the conservative agenda with a statement on sexual mores, or proposed statues on his social agenda – not Newt.  If people ever did the homework to look up the Paul Ryan flap and actually WATCH the interviewing instead of reacting like a liberal pantywaist, you’d see that this was Gingrich’s point. You can’t shove legislation down the throats of the entire American population without getting some “buy in” first.  THAT is social engineering and it is why (thank God) Obama was stopped from any further major legislative damage, overreaching with Obamacare.

Recent Evidence of “disintegration?”

Gingrich Forceful Let’s look at this campaign.  In 1400 debates and 2 years (or whatever it has been) who has made the mistakes?  It sure as hell hasn’t been Gingrich.  In fact he is the ONLY one who hasn’t had an “oops” moment and handled every pitch thrown at him with complete understanding of the not only the issue, but the political strategy involved in countering it.  Even given the arcane 30 second sound bite limit  He doesn’t whine or cut interviews short when he can’t answer them.  He may not give the answer someone likes, but he never runs away.

Even the immigration issue where he said he wanted to give 25 year law breakers a break – while shocking and abhorrent to we conservatives – would never hurt him in the general election and was a measure that didn’t GUARANTEE citizenship or leniency unless the neighborhood agreed to it.  About 20 things Santorum have said on the trail would stain him in the eyes as a chauvinist homophobe, and would be the distraction of EVERY interview from nomination until defeat.  And SOPA?  It would actually incite a whole demographic to register to vote just to stop him.

And Romney? 

RomneyHeyBaby Yes.  I will stipulate that there is no slicker politician in all of the kingdom.  But look at what HE has said during the campaign that could be amplified a billion times over in Obama TV ads and lame stream media rehashing:

  • Ohio Proposition – Against it, no comment, for it.
  • RomneyCare for the country? – Still lies that it says in his first edition IN PRINT it is what he wanted.
  • NET Jobs created through Bain? – 100K, 110K, not nearly 100K, 120K, we can’t say.
  • Gay Marriage in MA - He had nothing to do with, the Supreme Court made me do it, I’m against it.  (Romney actually seemed to subvert the MA Constitution by ensuring it’s passage via Executive Order.)
  • He disavowed within the past month that his Gubernatorial campaign distributed gay pride flyers. You know. The ones that had “Paid for by the Romney for Governor Committee.”

This is the heart of a “suppress the vote” campaign making you feel sick pulling a lever for either one.  There is a reason why the “flip flop” label sticks.  It has merit.  What is Newt’s label?  “Philanderer” and “Bombastic.”  One won’t matter among Democrats and Independents, the other is similar to the “stupid” label on Reagan.  When people actually get to know (or re-know) him, they’ll see a strong, sometime opinionated leader.  Who won’t cancel 100,000 jobs in the gulf and another 150,000 jobs on a pipeline.  They certainly won’t worry that he will do what he promises.

Don’t forget, the unholy alliance between Goldman Sachs and the Obama administration is troublesome beyond words.  Whose campaign has Goldman Sachs given the most money to?  You got it.  Mitt Romney.  $369,000 worth.  (If you exclude Obama and the $450K to him.)   Santorum or Gingrich ain’t getting nuttin’.

The following are the overall donation numbers from employees of the big Wall Street banks and their wives....

Mitt Romney: $813,300
Barack Obama: $198,874
Tim Pawlenty: $101,515
Rick Perry: $58,900
Jon Huntsman: $28,250
Ron Paul: $13,104
Herman Cain: $2,715
Michelle Bachmann: $1,500
Newt Gingrich: $1,250

I don’t think I need to go back and document the ties from Obama to Occupy Wall Street and their not so secretive plan to declare an all out class and race war this year to get him re-elected.  For those who still maintain that an attack on BAIN was an attack on capitalism, you either haven’t done the research, have had one too many multi-martini lunches which have erased memories of 40 years of Gingrich’s crusade for lower taxes and free market reforms, or, perhaps are trying to compensate for personal guilt over your own unrestrained greed.  I don’t know and don’t care.  The fact is that you could mandate Milton Friedman free market education from now until November 5th, and you would never convince the rank and file of America that a privileged, Wall Street Nor'easter named Mitt isn’t trying to help his cronies.  Especially with Obama and Occupy sucking up 1/3 of every news broadcast or more once they swing back into gear.

RonPaulGoofyLook I revert back to the Reagan election formula that POLICY has to be conservative, distinct from the Democrats and inclusive in the minds of the AVERAGE (not conservative) American.  ELECTABILITY must include a command of communication that educates, inspires and can quickly disarm any bomb thrown at them.  Electability also has to include an “aura” of a Presidential stature.  Paulbots will be mad at me for not including him in this review but there simply is no mathematical path for Ron Paul to be elected in the GOP.  Even if there were, he certainly would not fit the bill on foreign policy or in having the stature of a sane, well-balanced individual we could trust with nuclear codes.  Against a calm, cool and collected aura of Obama, Paul would be worse than Nixon with no makeup.

Good looks and charm may have been perfectly suited for 1992, 2000 and 2008, but who believes that that will sell this year?  It’s one thing to have a quarterback who can throw a game winning TD.  It’s another thing for someone to know when to throw it.  It’s still another for a quarterback to ]inspires his team to believe that they can win causing everyone to give it their best.

Please, anyone.  Give me an example of Mitt or Rick doing the same on ANY scale compared to what Gingrich has done and is doing.  Show me any evidence that Romney could withstand a historical onslaught of negative ads that wouldn’t tank his “favorables” worse than what Mitt did to Newt in Iowa.  Seriously, I’m open to voting for the best candidate WHOEVER it is.  But give me something other than lip service that sounds like a liberal line and articulate an argument that rests on facts.

Here is my checklist:

  • Experience in leading a conservative cause WHILE IN OFFICE (when it would do some good.)
  • Experience in enacting laws and legislation that turn back government and reflect conservative values.
  • Experience in selling and implementing BIG conservative ideas on a national scale that move a country to the right.
  • Experience in creating, strategizing and leading a movement that results in a conservative congress to help pass these reforms, not just a personal election victory (or one.)

Please. Tell me where my logic is wrong, will you?


LOVE reading your material!! We seem to be thinking out of the same part of the brain. I haven't disagreed with anything you have said and that is saying a lot!! I have pragmatically looked at all the candidates and given each careful and thoughtful consideration. My heart just says that Newt has the conviction and passion to make it happen. I don't want another "let's all get along" politician. "My Friends..." Bravo

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