Categorized | Commentary/Editorial

Newt’s Latest Meltdown; Updated

Having been out of pocket for a couple days, I missed a lot of the excitement which transpired over the weekend.  Prior to the weekend, of course, we witnessed Mitt Romney’s self-destruction in Ann Arbor, aptly described by Jonah Goldberg as a "sincere, intelligent, cogent, informed political disaster".  And Goldberg’s review was one of the more generous.  This was followed on Saturday by Mike Huckabee’s announcement that he wasn’t running.  Then, yesterday, Newt Gingrich essentially pulled a Mitt Romney and committed hari kari on Meet The Press when he effectively defended Obamacare by touting the concept of the individual mandate central to Obama’s government takeover of the health care sector.  Oh, and for good measure, Gingrich demagogued Paul Ryan’s rational and credible Medicare plan as radical "right-wing social engineering" or something.  I miss everything. Fortunately, National Review’s Andrew Stiles didn’t and he has the details on Newt’s meltdown, first with regard to Medicare:

Newt Gingrich’s appearance on “Meet the Press” today could leave some wondering which party’s nomination he is running for. The former speaker had some harsh words for Paul Ryan’s (and by extension, nearly every House Republican’s) plan to reform Medicare, calling it “radical.”

“I don’t think right-wing social engineering is any more desirable than left-wing social engineering,” he said when asked about Ryan’s plan to transition to a “premium support” model for Medicare. “I don’t think imposing radical change from the right or the left is a very good way for a free society to operate.”

As far as an alternative, Gingrich trotted out the same appeal employed by Obama/Reid/Pelosi — for a “national conversation” on how to “improve” Medicare, and promised to eliminate ‘waste, fraud and abuse,’ etc.

Ah yes, the infamous "national conversation" and "waste, fraud, and abuse" rhetoric to which one resorts when he or she has made the calculation that pandering is preferable to an actual plan.  Newt then goes on to back Obamacare’s individual mandate while, naturally, claiming to be against Obamacare.    

He even went so far as to compare it the Obama health-care plan.”I’m against Obamacare, which is imposing radical change, and I would be against a conservative imposing radical change.”

In another surprising move, Gingrich also reiterated his previous support for a “variation of the individual mandate” for health care. “I  believe all of us — and this is going to be a big debate — I believe all of us have a responsibility to help pay for health care,” he said, insisting there is “a way to do it that make most libertarians relatively happy.”

This footling nonsense  is simply inexplicable, and is illustrative of why Newt will never be President.  Allahpundit at Hot Air struggles to make sense of it all:

I’ve already written about my mystification at his comments, but Philip Klein adds a good point to deepen the mystery: Why would a guy like Newt whose brand has always been about Big Bold Solutions criticize Ryan for offering … a big bold solution? (Especially one which Newt himself once seemed to support.) His best argument against the rest of the field was that he’s always been willing to consider radical policy alternatives that more timid conservatives wouldn’t; now Ryan comes along trying to solve the entitlements crisis and suddenly Gingrich goes cold. What exactly is the argument for his candidacy, then? That he’s willing to confront the tough problems that others won’t — except for the one that’s driving the country to fiscal ruin?

Valid questions all.  Leaving aside Newt’s myriad personal baggage, why would anyone consider voting for him as a conservative alternative to, well, anyone at all?  Let’s not forget that this is the same guy who proclaimed "the era of Reagan is over" in 2008.  Earlier this year, in a transparent attempt to pander to Iowa farmers, Newt "Professor Cornpone" Gingrich defended ethanol subsidies, hardly a conservative position.  And no discussion of Newt’s buffoonery is complete without the following two words: Dede Scozzafava.   Today on his radio show, Rush Limbaugh commented on Newt’s ill-conceived comments:

Paul Ryan responded to Newt today on the Laura Ingraham show with the following pertinent question via Gateway Pundit: “With allies like that, who needs the left?”

Given everything that’s happened in the past few days, it’s important to put things into proper perspective with regard to the Republican primaries.  There are some on our side who’ve been critical of Governor Palin’s decision to delay making an announcement on whether or not she’s running in 2012.  We all, of course, hope she runs.  But that being said, I personally don’t believe that I’m qualified to tell her how to go about it.  She’s been there and done that many times, and with remarkable success.  I trust her political instincts.  I disagree with the premise that by waiting, she’s following a flawed strategy. 

Indeed from where I sit, it’s working pretty well.  Newt and Mittens are collapsing before our eyes without any help from her.  Huck and Trump are out.  If Daniels and Huntsman get in (let’s hope they do), those two, along with T-Paw and Mitt will be fighting over a dwindling amount of moderate votes in the GOP primaries…not exactly a winning strategy. Bachmann is, at best, a junior varsity player and she simply doesn’t wear very well.  Moreover, she has taken some decidedly non-conservative positions and has near zero actual accomplishments. Bachmann’s record will be discussed in an upcoming post by Stacy.  That leaves…who?  Rick Santorum, Ron Paul, and Herman Cain?  Enough said. What’s the rush?  By sitting back, following Reagan’s 11th commandment, and watching the others self-destruct, she’s doing just fine.  That door about which she has spoken is slowly but inexorably swinging open. Relax everyone; she knows what she’s doing.  We don’t.

Update: (h/t Jack) Mark Levin grilled Newt today on his radio show today. The Right Scoop has the audio here.

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  • TedTorgerson

    I always thought Newt looked eerily like the Chuckie doll. Now he sounds like him too!

    • conservativemama

      Macy’s day balloon. 

    • Don B

       LOL.  He does, doesn’t he?

  • Guest

     She certainly hasn’t missed anything by waiting, so far.  But I have to disagree on the "she’s done it before" part… Not on the national stage, and only once, successfully, at the state level.  Pres is a whole nuther ball game.  Hard to argue with her instincts, though.  

    • Guest

      Mayor. Governor. Local. State. One plus one is how much? She only needed to win the election for governor once, and only needed 2.5 years to complete her agenda. IOW, "she’s done it before," and she’ll do it again.

      • Guest

        "It" in the reference was "deciding when to announce."  Not exactly a critical part of local politics, probably not a big part of running for Governor – which she did once, successfully.  She has not had to decide when and how to announce a run for a National ticket, yet. The roll out of that decision is a big deal, if you have been paying attention.   You can say it’s the same as running for mayor if you want, but it isn’t.   

        But as I said above, (1) waiting has been fine so far and (2) you can’t argue with her instincts.

    • puma_for_life

      That’s right; her political instincts are the best I’ve ever witnessed.  That’s not peanuts….she’s at the top of the game and that’s most of the game. 

    • Jesse_Cornish

      Right now, we all need have to have a little faith in her, just like she has in us.

  • MaMcGriz

    Tighten your seatbelts, everyone. It’s gonna be a bumpy flight. 

    Palin for President, 2012.

    Accept no substitutes.

  • HiramHawk

    Newt bites the dust… Maybe Obama will give him a job in his Administration?

    • free4now

      Then with Huntsman, he can join hands with Øbama and sing Kumbaya in perfect harmony…

  • Dan C

     We saw it a long time ago here on the site. Many of us said at the time around 18 months ago that slowly things were turning our way. I like where we are right now. We (Sarah supporters) are in great position with alot of resources and manpower yet to be deployed.

  • c4pfan

    I don’t think there is a rush either.  Can we focus on getting this congress to even voting NO on the debt ceiling? 

    • NY4P

      Is it possible, in the House and Senate, to hold new elections NOW for the leadership positions or do we have to wait for the next congress?

  • Reckoner_3

    “I don’t think right-wing social engineering is any more desirable than
    left-wing social engineering,” he said when asked about Ryan’s plan to
    transition to a “premium support” model for Medicare. “I don’t think
    imposing radical change from the right or the left is a very good way
    for a free society to operate.” 

    What an out-of-touch Old Guard retread!

  • tomlyn

    Sarah, I told you in Norfolk, Nebraska when you were there for your book signing last winter that you were going to be a great president.  I could tell it in your eyes that you were the one to lead us in the future. 

  • IsraeliCojones

    I trust her political instincts.  I disagree with the premise that by waiting, she’s following a flawed strategy.

    You nailed it, Doug. Kudos.

    • ConservativeCanadian

       If we believe that Sarah Palin has the qualifications to be a prudent and skillful president (as most of us here do), then surely we can believe that she is prudent and skillful enough to organize and run a well-timed campaign for the position.

  • $8196935

    Great roundup re the Meltdowns Doug

    also looking forward to Stacy’s post on Bachmann 

  • unseen1

    only thing about getting in now  Palin  could pile on and repay them for the Tucson pile on…. 

    • IsraeliCojones

      What do you mean?

  • nala3325

    After observing Gov. Palin for two years, one thing  I’ve learned is that she has the best political instincts. I’m with Doug on this one. She will announce when she believes it is the right time to announce.

    • lanahi

      Right now, they are starting to attack Bachmann more…that’s their latest conservative target, even in the establishment GOP.  They are doing all the work for Sarah, but I’ll bet that wasn’t their intention! What fools they are!

  • Guest

    Excellent, Doug, excellent.

    BTW, Doug, I trust her political acumen.

  • danielvito

    Gingrich, agreeing to mandated insurance is probably one of the biggest political blunders in the last 2 years. He has lost his ability to run, he needs to go away. Like Romney, he has no chance. 

    • unseen1

       hell Mitt just did the same thing  in his speech

      • danielvito

        Unseen, Romneycare is walking dead. First ad that goes up about his romneycare he’s done. No chance! 

        • sarahpalinrocks2

           You got that straight!

  • palinsupporter1

     Morris is on Hannity saying Palin isn’t running and Sean is just letting him get away with it.  What a schmuck!

    • $8196935

      Sean brought up Sarah’s name and that was Morris’s answer 

    • SFP2012

      I quit watching O’Reilly because he totally ignores Sarah when talking about possible candidates — Hannity may be next on my list! 

      • Bobbi Duvall

        I would like to send O’Reilly and Hannity a note requesting they get some different/better political analysts on their programs once in a while – I’m sick to death of Morris, Rove, and Krauthammer!!

    • Marianne

       All you need to know about Dick Morris is that he wrote a book that came out in 2005, with his predictions regarding the 2008 presidential race. The book was entitled, "Condi vs Hillary". Amazon’s book sales ranking system currently places the book at #2,310,894. Even books by Al Franken are selling more briskly than that.

    • Bobbi Duvall

      And Dick Morris has this stupid poll where he wants people to cast a vote for the person they would vote for now that Huck and Trump are out.  What is stupid about his poll is that he doesn’t even list Sarah as a choice.  That really burns me up!  (He can’t use the excuse that she hasn’t announced a run for the Presidency because neither has Daniels, Huntsman, etc. etc.  I sent a note to Dick Morris that indicated by displeasure and said that I hope both he and Karl Rove EAT CROW FOR YEARS following the 2012 election!

      • sarahpalinrocks2

         Trust me they will all be eating crow for a long time, including George Will and SourKrauthammer.

        Pass the salt, pepper, oil & vinegar. Thank you! ;)

  • $8196935

    Wall Street Journal

    Debt Ceiling Panic Alert Level

    This debate is kabuki theater and has been played out repeatedly over much of the past century

  • $8196935

    Morris on with Sean.

    He thinks the bowouts help Mitt because he is known

    Oh, he is known allright and why he is toast

    Morris also thinks Bachmann is a star and Sarah isn’t running.
    Morris finds what he does better than having a legitimate job  

    • Guest

       Dick likes to suck prostitutes’ toes.  That is a fact.  

      • sarahpalinrocks2

        ROFL at JTFour! :D

      • Reckoner_3

        –Geez Louise

        . . .TOO MUCH information!

  • Gelston

    deleted by gelston

  • OnePurpleKrayon

    I think the reason Sarah’s holding off on announcing is due to safety concerns.  If she announced now she’d be more in danger from psychos.  Perhaps she’s waiting until the school year ends for her kids to be away from attacks. It seems to mainly center around her children and family’s safety.  She would have to hire bodyguards, etc, so it is only natural for her to delay the decision as far as possible.  We should not worry too much because once she announces, people are going to jump to their feet and hop to it just like that.  All the other contenders will fade to the background and all attention will be turn towards her.  The momentum will be so great that Obama would be left going, "W-w-w-what just happened?"

    • grizzlyrising

      Good thoughts.  I wonder how walking the streets of Iowan towns is even possible for her…thoughts?  I have no idea how high level security works or what the limitations are. 

      • suehimel

         In rural IA, where I am organizing, she will have to walk the streets, the county fair grounds and through the parks, town squares and visit people’s homes.  But, that is small town America and pretty safe.  She’ll be surrounded by staff all of the time, so it won’t be that easy for some nut to get to her.  The residents themselves will recognize someone out of place.  There is no doubt she will be somewhat exposed during a campaign, but she will have to let that happen if she wants to be effective.  I am sure she will have some security, but she will have to be face to face with Iowans to get their vote.

        • Bobbi Duvall

          And I do wish she would start doing some of that walking in Iowa even though she hasn’t announced yet.  It certainly couldn’t hurt her a bit because, as you say, she will have to be face-to-face with Iowans to get their vote.  (The same might be said of South Carolina as well.)

          • sarahpalinrocks2

             She will hit Iowa like a tornado when the time is right. Trust Sarah. She knows what she is doing. It’s too early. Let the other GOP wannabes keep shooting themselves in the foot.

    • $8196935

      Yes, waiting for the end of the month for school to end
      is a realistic bottom line

    • adnnews1

      School ends next week in Wasilla, May 25th

  • unseen1

     Daniel Morgan, via Twitter:
    “Comparison: @SarahPalinUSA says Ryan plan is good start. @NewtGingrich thinks Ryan plan goes too far. You decide.”

    • citizenG100

      Who’s Daniel Morgan?

      • sarahpalinrocks2

        Daniel Morgan is  danthebarbarian on Twitter. He is one of the most staunchest Sarah Palin advocates on Twitter. Please follow him! :)

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