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Published on January 5th, 2012 | by Saira Khan
Image © [caption id="" align="alignleft" width="315" caption="Newt Gingrich, Don Irvine Photos ©"][/caption] Is our notorious Newt seen as a possible leader purely because he is, not to put too fine a point on it, the lesser of more evils? As Maureen Dowd put it, ‘Next to Romney, Gingrich seems authentic. Next to Herman Cain, Gingrich seems faithful. Next to Jon Huntsman, Gingrich seems conservative. Next to Michele Bachmann and Rick Perry, Gingrich actually does look like an intellectual’. Gingrich offers experience -- something some of this year’s GOP candidates lack -- having been a member of the House of Representatives from 1978 as well as a previous Speaker of the House. He also offers the prospect of a conservative revolution, claiming to ensure Republican majorities in the House and Senate by 2021. This is a bold statement to make, but does Gingrich have the background to back it up? From 1978 to 1994, Gingrich led the ~1/3 Republican Congress in a series of reckless obstruction to Democrat policies, which effectively brought up the Republicans to the domination of Congress by 1994. This GOP candidate claims to have 'helped Ronald Reagan and Jack Kennedy develop supply-side economics... help led the effort to defeat communism in the Congress... [and] balance the federal budget for four straight years'. Gingrich, in his own words, describes himself as a ‘world historical transformational figure’. True, he may have balanced the budget under Clinton. True, he may have facilitated a Republican takeover of Congress. But he did neither of these things single-handedly, as his heroic speeches seem to suggest. Let us not forget; it was Clinton who shut down Government in 1995, not Newt Gingrich. Gingrich’s time as Speaker of the House is often described as disastrous, having faced ethics violations and been deposed by his own allies. But this is not all. Gingrich does not merely have skeletons in his closet; he has an entire graveyard back there. His legal charges in 1997 amounted to $300,000. Granted, 83 of the 84 claims were dismissed, but it is not an unprecedented occurrence that additional legal claims are forgotten when one has been admitted to. Gingrich dodged Vietnam service and once cast Clinton as a hippie McGovernick, leading a movement to impeach Bill Clinton whilst engaging in a love affair himself. He described Palestinians as an ‘invented’ people. He displayed sneering arrogance in his nasty remark to Mitt Romney; ‘the only reason you didn't become a career politician is because you lost to Ted Kennedy’. He faced a mass resignation of staff in response to an impromptu Greek holiday and also failed to qualify for the Virginia polls. Despite the family values that the GOP allegedly stand for, Gingrich has two scandalous love affairs behind him. Ron Paul denounces his fellow GOP candidate as a Washington insider who made $1.6 million from Freddie Mac. Not to mention Gingrich’s public contradictions. He currently claims to support the death penalty for marijuana, disparages Paul Ryan’s Medicare plan and, as previously mentioned, casts Palestinians as invented. Before the campaign, the same wily GOP candidate supported marijuana legalisation, an individual mandate for healthcare insurance and supported Yasser Arafat and the Palestinian state at the 1993 Oslo Accords. True, people can change, but if we put together all of Gingrich’s past liberal statements, we get Al Gore. Gingrich seems to do only that which is the best for him at that particular moment in time. Maureen Dowd’s statement may be found to be fairly questionable and, indeed, rather amusing in light of the above information.

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Gingrich, putting the ‘HIP’ back into ‘hypocrisy’

Newt Gingrich, Don Irvine Photos ©

Is our notorious Newt seen as a possible leader purely because he is, not to put too fine a point on it, the lesser of more evils? As Maureen Dowd put it, ‘Next to Romney, Gingrich seems authentic. Next to Herman Cain, Gingrich seems faithful. Next to Jon Huntsman, Gingrich seems conservative. Next to Michele Bachmann and Rick Perry, Gingrich actually does look like an intellectual’.

Gingrich offers experience — something some of this year’s GOP candidates lack — having been a member of the House of Representatives from 1978 as well as a previous Speaker of the House. He also offers the prospect of a conservative revolution, claiming to ensure Republican majorities in the House and Senate by 2021. This is a bold statement to make, but does Gingrich have the background to back it up?

From 1978 to 1994, Gingrich led the ~1/3 Republican Congress in a series of reckless obstruction to Democrat policies, which effectively brought up the Republicans to the domination of Congress by 1994. This GOP candidate claims to have ‘helped Ronald Reagan and Jack Kennedy develop supply-side economics… help led the effort to defeat communism in the Congress… [and] balance the federal budget for four straight years‘. Gingrich, in his own words, describes himself as a ‘world historical transformational figure’. True, he may have balanced the budget under Clinton. True, he may have facilitated a Republican takeover of Congress. But he did neither of these things single-handedly, as his heroic speeches seem to suggest. Let us not forget; it was Clinton who shut down Government in 1995, not Newt Gingrich.

Gingrich’s time as Speaker of the House is often described as disastrous, having faced ethics violations and been deposed by his own allies. But this is not all. Gingrich does not merely have skeletons in his closet; he has an entire graveyard back there. His legal charges in 1997 amounted to $300,000. Granted, 83 of the 84 claims were dismissed, but it is not an unprecedented occurrence that additional legal claims are forgotten when one has been admitted to. Gingrich dodged Vietnam service and once cast Clinton as a hippie McGovernick, leading a movement to impeach Bill Clinton whilst engaging in a love affair himself. He described Palestinians as an ‘invented’ people. He displayed sneering arrogance in his nasty remark to Mitt Romney; ‘the only reason you didn’t become a career politician is because you lost to Ted Kennedy’. He faced a mass resignation of staff in response to an impromptu Greek holiday and also failed to qualify for the Virginia polls. Despite the family values that the GOP allegedly stand for, Gingrich has two scandalous love affairs behind him. Ron Paul denounces his fellow GOP candidate as a Washington insider who made $1.6 million from Freddie Mac.

Not to mention Gingrich’s public contradictions. He currently claims to support the death penalty for marijuana, disparages Paul Ryan’s Medicare plan and, as previously mentioned, casts Palestinians as invented. Before the campaign, the same wily GOP candidate supported marijuana legalisation, an individual mandate for healthcare insurance and supported Yasser Arafat and the Palestinian state at the 1993 Oslo Accords. True, people can change, but if we put together all of Gingrich’s past liberal statements, we get Al Gore. Gingrich seems to do only that which is the best for him at that particular moment in time.

Maureen Dowd’s statement may be found to be fairly questionable and, indeed, rather amusing in light of the above information.

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