Focusing on Newt’s virtues

The alternative title for this post is “the enemy of my enemy is my friend.”  Scott Galupo is no Newt Gingrich fan, but he genuinely hates Mitt Romney, whom he describes in the same terms once used to describe Tom Cruise:  “I don’t sense a man there. I sense a bristling mass of ambition.”  He sees Newt as flawed, but with one genuine conservative accomplishment under his belt, while Mitt has done nothing to earn the conservative description but for the fact that he’s placed the “R” after his name:

Still, there’s a way Newt can effectively undermine Romney and get himself back in the good graces of the conservative base. He needs to stay out of the briar patch of Romney’s position on this or that issue, and focus on one thing: his accomplishments as speaker.

If I were Newt Gingrich, I’d dial down the “vision thing” and draw these contrasts:

What has Mitt Romney ever done, while in office, to advance the conservative cause? He got himself elected in a bedrock liberal state and served four unspectacular years. Whoop-de-do. Name one instance where Mitt Romney fought for conservative principles when it didn’t suit his electoral needs.

Newt was the architect of the most significant rightward shift in the politics of the whole nation, not just one state. Domestically, he did more to slow the growth of government than Ronald Reagan did. After he departed, the party beat a retreat from the Contract with America legacy, and, under Rep. Tom DeLay, emitted an ethical stench far more fetid than the overblown controversy over Gingrich’s book deal.

I’ve said before and I’ll say again that I will vote for anything or anybody that opposes Obama. I’ve also conceded that all of the conservative candidates are flawed.  Indeed, the problem with our primary system, not to mention conservatives’ own obsessive quest for candidate perfection, is that we tend to use the primary process to highlight the candidates’ flaws rather than their virtues.  Ultimately, I’m sure it’s a good thing, because the eventual Republican nominee is thoroughly vetted by the time the media savages him (or her) for having the temerity to challenge a member of the Democratic Party.  Nevertheless, it’s a painful and somewhat damaging process, not just for the candidates, but for the voters too.

I will therefore vote for either Mitt or Newt.  I’m not sure which of them will make me most or least happy, but I know that each will be better than Barack.

Hat tip:  Earl Aagaard

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  • http://photoncourier.blogspot.com David Foster

    The question that matters is WHO CAN WIN??? Because the country, and the world, cannot stand 4 more years of Barack Obama.

    From that practical standpoint, Gingrich probably has a small edge. There is great popular hostility toward the intertwinement of the financial and political elites, and Romney fits that profile a little bit closer than does Gingrich.

    Moreover, should Romney win the nomination there will be a great deal of media emphasis on all the people fired by companies that were acquired by Bain Capital. We know, of course, that sometimes you HAVE to lay people off to save and grow a business, but that can be a hard sell with someone who’s been laid off himself a couple of times and fears another such event. Moreover, some very knowledgeable manufacturing people believe that Bain has been entirely too quick to pull the firing and outsourcing triggers and not so astute about process and productivity improvements.

    Neither one is a dream candidate, but right now I’m saying Gingrich by a small marging 

  • jj

    I occasionally wonder what the hell’s going on.  I don’t recall there ever being a campaign like this, where – to date, anyway – there’s hardly been a thing anyone could refer to as a “campaign” at all.  What’s with the 800 debates, a year early?  These aren’t primaries, these aren’t part of any process I remember – they aren’t even debates in the sense of the definition of an actual debate – they’re joint press conferences more than anything.  This is the most stupid, ongoing, witless popularity contest I’ve ever seen.  (And at this point it’s boring and repetitive too, and I’m very close to declining to watch further.)
     
    It’s idiotic.  It’s all being run by liberals, and they do indulge in “gotcha” questions, and they occasionally get goddamed snotty, too, like Maria Whoever.  Okay, it was a pleasure for a moment or two to watch Newt smack her fat face for her, but in a snake-pit like that, why the hell would a prospective GOP candidate show up in the first place?  What this is accomplishing is to give the democrats a year’s worth of notice to crank up and focus the opposition research operation against specific people, and let the media subject them to an anal exam Jesus Christ couldn’t survive.  I don’t know whose idea all these goddam “debates” was, but it had to be the brain-child of a democrat.
     
    Imagine if Obama and Clinton had been subjected to this “debate” schedule – neither one of them would have survived to be the candidate three years ago.  By the time it comes time to actually cast a vote for somebody, everybody’s going to be so sick of all of them that the write-in for Donald Duck will probably be enough to carry some states.
     
    I really wonder if anyone at the top of the GOP has the elementary brains to come in out of the goddam rain.

  • Mike Devx

    And this allegation of a 13-year affair between Herman Cain and a woman, which he allegedly ended a few weeks before he filed papers for candidacy for President… it is deadly.  It didn’t look like he was capable of bouncing back from the harassment allegations.  I don’t even sense that this affair allegation is big news, which means the media has already given his candidacy up for dead.  Looks like the Cain Train is off the rails.

    I still don’t want to give automatic credence to any allegations, without there being proof.  I think that is dangerous.  But she does have a long record of cell phone calls.  He claims he was simply involved in helping her out financially.  It may be wrong of me to consider this, but she appears to be handling the announcement with class and dignity, and has spoken publicly because she found out somehow that a media firestorm was about to descend upon her.  Someone uncovered her story – if she is telling the truth.  She appears quite credible, and the timing doesn’t seem correct for the usual Democrat dirty tricks… ouch.

    If Herman Cain did in fact do all of these things that the women have alleged, he is a scoundrel and a man ridiculously unfaithful to his wife.  Heck, he’d even have to be considered unfaithful to his 13-year mistress!  That takes some doing, to get to that level.

    If he’s innocent of all allegations, then he’s guilty of an incredible level of naivete, putting himself in the position for all these years of an incredible lack of caution in his business behavior around women.  Even if innocent, I don’t see enough Americans being willing to give him the benefit of the doubt; I think he’s unelectable now.  I want to remain neutral without proof, but I’m really having strong, strong doubts about Cain’s innocence now.  Perhaps that reflects badly upon me; I don’t know.

    Looks like Newt Gingrich is going to be the Anybody-But-Romney candidate.  He’s been thoroughly vetted for years.  People ARE going to find out that that divorce-the-cancer-stricken-wife story was a whole bunch of bull, and that may cause them to reevaluate Newt: “If I was wrong about that cancer-stricken-wife story, what else do I have wrong in my head about this Gingrich guy?”  And Newt appears to be a much better person and candidate now than he was fifteen years ago.  I do like the new Newt, and admire his change in persona.

  • Michael Adams

    A small legal question: I understand that the standard of evidence would be utterly insurmountable for a candidate to file a libel suit, but, what about a former candidate?I realize none of the women has any money, which is probably why they made these allegations, but oh, the sweet satisfaction!
     
    Mike D, I’d add that we spend about twenty years, (so far)  unlearning the garbage we have been fed by the Leftist media. When we have passed the big stuff, like “wars for oil,” there are still the little calumnies, like “the divorce papers served in the cancer ward.” I don’t find a lie a week any more, but maybe once a month? At least now I can assume that something is a lie, until I have sorted it out.

  • Oldflyer

    I thought Romney gave an excellent interview to Bret Baier on FNC’s Special Report this evening.  Dare I say that at times he sounded a Reaganesque call for reasserting American power?
     
    I like Newt.  I can vote for Newt without any problem whatsoever.  I do not like his history of a messy private life; I do not like his somewhat arrogant pose at times.  But, I can overlook those blemishes.  I have seen growth.  I see Newt as a man with big ideas.  I see a fighter who has been through the crucible.  I do not believe that he will  wilt in the face of adversity.   I see a man who is unapologetic about being American, and being Conservative.
     
    I also like Romney.  I simply do not comprehend the level of Romney hatred.  Oh, don’t bother going through the litany of sins, real or imaginary,  again;  I have heard them all before–frequently.  I see in Romney a man of impeccable character, who is  ethical and strong.  I see a man who knows how to solve problems.  A man with proven ability and accomplishments to show.  A man who has governed in a hostile environment. I see a man who loves America.  I heard him say tonight that his goal is to restore America’s status in the world through American strength.   I believe him, and I applaud him.

  • Danny Lemieux

    I prefer Newt because he has a proven record of working successfully with Congress (Contract for America) in a hostile atmosphere (Democrat Executive, Republican Congress) and he is also very, very good at articulating conservative positions in easy-to-understand ways. We desperately need an Articulator in Chief. Third, he knows how to handle the press and shove it right back at them (like Christie).

    I wouldn’t feel bad if Romney was nominated, although I feel he spends far too much time with his finger to the wind.

  • jj

    And furthermore, I don’t know who Galupo is quoting (come to that, I don’t know who Galupo is, either) – but I do know that Tom Cruise is a joy to work with, always manages to make time for fans, and is one of the nicer – maybe nicest – people in that nuthouse where the air is brown. 
     
    Time for Herman Cain to become a democrat.  Given the trouble FDR, JFK, LBJ, and Clinton had keeping it in their pants, he’s a natural for them.  Hell, they ought to regard him as a hero!

  • excathedra

    Since I can’t have (most of, not all of) Newt Gingrich’s brain in Rick Perry’s body, I’ll vote for the Republican, whoever he is.
    As my 86 year old mother said the other day, “To get that man out of the White House, I’d vote for Howdy Doody.”

  • suek

    >>Moreover, should Romney win the nomination there will be a great deal of media emphasis on all the people fired by companies that were acquired by Bain Capital.>>

    First, I don’t particularly like Romney. His stance that as a governor of a mostly Democratic state, with a Democratic legislature which was working to pass an outrageous health bill, he had to come up with something “workable” fails, imo. If he thought their plan was unworkable, he should have simply vetoed it. If they passed it over his veto, then he should have put as much of it into effect as was practical and let the rest slide.

    On the other hand…it seems to me that the statement above is a plus for him. If I think of him from that standpoint, he’s exactly what we need – someone who’s willing to start firing people and reorganize the whole darn government. And bring it back to life _smaller_.

    Someone the other day had a critique on Newt … that he simply wasn’t an executive. That he was an idea man without peer, but not very good at executing his ideas. And that he rubbed people the wrong way. True or not, I don’t know – but if true, maybe a Romney/Newt ticket would be good.

    By the way…I don’t care for his wife. No reason I can make a statement about … more of just a feeling. Well…yes there is. It really bothers me that she is supposed to be the reason he converted to Catholicism – because she’s such a strong Catholic – but she was having an affair with him while he was still married. And she married a twice divorced man (yes, there are church acceptable ways around this, but I do see it as a problem). It’s much like Kennedy being a Catholic. Or so he said. He – and Ted – sure didn’t act like it. And he said that his faith wouldn’t influence how he performed as President. How could it not? Unless his beliefs were only skin deep…which I believe was the case. In name only, in other words.

    Anyway…good or bad, I’m struck by Newt’s “look” when he’s with his wife. He appears besotted with her. I think we’d be getting another 2 for 1 package – but, again, I’m not certain whether that’s good or bad. She may keep him on the straight and narrow – may help him get things _done_. I don’t know.

  • bizcor

     
    Yes Newt’s brain in Rick Perry’s body. Last night I attended my 5th Rick Perry event. Every time I listen to him I want to help him finish his sentence. He has a difficult time finding the right word and ends up using another word that either doesn’t convey the same point or only does so vaguely. “You have no heart” would be a perfect example of this. That isn’t what he meant to say but in the heat of the moment his brain freezes.
     
    Newt on the other hand nearly always has the correct word and speaks without much hesitation while staying on point. A few weeks ago I went to see Newt participate in a Lincoln Douglas style debate with Rick Santorum (who I also like very much). That style by the way is how all presidential candidates should debate. After the debate I was invited to a very private meet and greet cocktail party where I had a chance to actually chat with the Speaker. He does believe that Obamacare can be completely and totally removed provided we get a Republican house, Senate, and White House. He wants to secure the border and I believe he means it. He also has some good ideas about the economy and foreign policy. One of the things he said that stood out for me was people seems to think solutions to the problems are all or nothing. He said this when talking about what to do with the illegal aliens already in the country. Secure the border then there are gradual steps to deal with the problem.

    By the way, off topic but relevant to the political discussion. Does anyone see the similarity to the Herman Cain “bimbo erruptions” and the way Barack Obama won his State Senate and US Senate seats? His opponents in those elections were charged with sexual misconduct of one sort or another. Probably just a coincidence.
     

  • suek

    >>Does anyone see the similarity to the Herman Cain “bimbo erruptions” and the way Barack Obama won his State Senate and US Senate seats?>>

    Absolutely.

    >>Probably just a coincidence.>>

    Um hummm. Sure it is.

  • skullbuster

    You know, I used to think conservatives that spouted the “liberal media” junk were just showing sour grapes.  However, watching the media take Huntsman from nil to double digits in the polls in NH in a matter of a week by interviews on tv, I can see this happening.  Whether it is the exposure making people aware of his conservative views or faulty liberal polling, who knows?

    Believe it or not, as pessimistic as I normally am, I believe it’s going to be a Rep. landslide in Nov. next year. I like Newt and always have (since 1994 anyway), but I rfeally don’t think it’s going to matter. NOTE:

        http://www.newsmax.com/InsideCover/schoen-caddell-obama-one/2010/11/14/id/377010.

  • SADIE

    A couple of random thoughts …
     
    #1. Thank you Chris Christie for providing the campaign bumper sticker.
    “What the hell are we paying you for?” 
     
    #2. While we whittle down the candidates to a few and eventually to one, we don’t want to end up with a piece of wood that isn’t sharp enough to cut.
     
    #3. Willard or Newton vs Barack – where have all the Tom, Dick and Marys gone?
     
    We keep looking for the perfect apple out of the bunch. He simply does not exist. Stop searching and focus as much attention on the other two houses – they write and fund the bills, laws, earmarks and pork. They do such a bad job of it that sometime next year SCOTUS will decide what should have been decided by the voters.  If (heaven help us) Obama gets re-elected I want to be sure that his title changes from POTUS to EOTUS -Eunuch of the United States.

  • bizcor

    “EOTUS -Eunuch of the United States” i like the phrase but the Eunich will still have the power to appoint judges to the Supreme Court and other jurisdictions. Plus his justice department will still have the ability to prsecute or not people who violate the laws. No we need to cut off the head.

  • SADIE

    bizcor
     
    Well…I could look into a mohel with advanced Parkinsons.

  • bizcor

     
    Sadie, I must admit, since I’m Gentile , my Yiddish is not so good but once I looked it up got it so LOL
     

  • SADIE

     
     
    bizcor, I didn’t want to make a mountain out of a mohel ;)   I knew you would find the answer.

  • http://ymarsakar.wordpress.com Ymarsakar

    As Obama proved “anyone” can become President. You just got to be ruthless enough about it. So the question isn’t “who can win”, since anyone can win, but rather “who wants it bad enough to do what it takes”.

  • http://ymarsakar.wordpress.com Ymarsakar

     At least now I can assume that something is a lie, until I have sorted it out.

    That’s a good instinct to have. One of the numerous available defenses against propaganda.

  • http://ymarsakar.wordpress.com Ymarsakar

    That’s what my execution scaffolds were supposed to be for. Cutting off heads.