In. what. parallel. universe?
Newt Gingrich? Dumpy white-haired guy? Former Congressman and Speaker of the House? THAT Newt Gingrich?
Doesn't anybody remember what happened the LAST time we put him in charge?
Newt Gingrich is not an untried commodity. He has wielded power in the highest halls of government. He has spoken for the GOP at a time when the party had an absolute majority in Congress. He rallied and inspired Americans with his "Contract with America".
1994: GOP adopts the "Contract with America" co-authored by Newt Gingrich. With this as a plaftorm, the GOP took the majority in Congress...
Source for the following, About.com ("US conservative politics") Large type bold comments TBL:
"Shortly after theContract With America had been voted upon, passed, vetoed, renegotiated, re-voted upon and again passed, budget talks between House Republicans and President Clinton broke down:
Newt couldn't deliver the Contract he promised the American people with an absolute majority in Congress.
"Gingrich led the override of Clinton's veto and when government operations expired, the federal government shut down."
Newt failed to pin the blame for the shutdown on the intransigent White House, paving the way for a generation of GOP cowardice in budget confrontations.
"Following the 1996 elections, many House Republicans blamed the GOP's weakened position on Gingrich. Meanwhile, Democrats filed a raft of ethics charges at him in an ironic attempt to get him to resign. Gingrich ultimately pleaded guilty and in 1997 was fined more than $300,000. Gingrich maintained that the statements made against him were "inaccurate" and "unreliable." Later that year, members of the GOP caucus staged a coup to remove Gingrich from the chair. Upon learning of Gingrich's potential replacement, Dick Armey, one of the conspirators, warned the Speaker of the coup and the threat was averted."
Newt lost the GOP its absolute majority in the House and Senate.
"Despite his narrow escape from being unseated as Speaker, it was clear by 1998 that Gingrich didn't have long in his position. Although he never joined the chorus of voices admonishing Clinton for his marital indiscretions, Gingrich did use the president's alleged perjury as a rallying cry to gain more seats in the midterm elections."
Newt Gingrich: My Affair Clarified Why I Needed To Impeach Clinton
"Nevertheless, Republicans suffered more losses and the blame was again laid at Gingrich's feet. Rather than face another challenge for his seat, Gingrich announced he would step down not only as Speaker but also from the House -- despite soundly winning an 11th term."
November 13, 2000: "... the combined budgets of the 95 major programs that the Contract with America promised to eliminate have increased by 13%." Edward H. Crane, President, Cato Institute.
Since then, Newt has undertaken to reinvent himself as the GOP's "Idea Man," who understands policy and politics, as he has amply demonstrated on several occasions:
The fact is, Newt Gingrich IS a great idea man, but whenever he has been given the chance to ACT on his ideas, he has failed miserably, and embarrassingly, at great cost to the GOP and the American people. Bluntly put, Newt could fall into a bed of roses and come out with fertilizer clenched in his teeth.
There is no visible reason Newt should be the favorite of the GOP machine or its conservative base.