Patterico's Pontifications

11/12/2011

Turning an elephant into a Newt?

Filed under: 2012 Election — Karl @ 8:34 am



[Posted by Karl]

As more people take a second look at Newtmentum, I may as well jump ahead to the next round of scrutiny.  Nate Silver evaluated the former Speaker’s strengths and weaknesses the other day.  My take on Gingrich’s campaign is loosely based on his structure.  Keep in mind that elections are mostly about the economy, so any analysis of Gingrich as a candidate is about his performance at the margins compared to his GOP rivals.

Fundraising and Campaign Infrastructure. Silver notes that Newt’s fundraising has been abysmal, but notes “the money sometimes follows the polls.”   Sure enough, the campaign says it has raised $1 million since Sunday, which will help the campaign erase its debt of nearly $1.2 million.  Fundraising can be a virtuous circle or a vicious cycle, but it is some sort of comment that a man who was the first GOP Speaker in over 40 years, founder of a raft of groups to support him and his ideas, and the go-to policy man after the 20o8 blowout has fared so poorly on this front.  Indeed, it’s notable that American Solutions folded after Newt threw his hat into the ring; it remains to be seen whether a new version can raise money as a Super-PAC.

Silver also notes Newt’s general lack of campaign infrastructure, caused in part by staff defections over the summer.  Perhaps it’s ironic that many were former Rick Perry advisers who likely left with an eye to joining the Texas governor’s campaign, given how Team Perry has fared.  However, the fact that Perry has stumbled does not mean that the staff was not justififed in leaving Gingrich.  Rather, the mass resignation was a reflection of Newt’s management style, which has long been an issue.  As Speaker of the House, he did fairly well for the first two years, then was the target of an aborted coup.  Recriminations after 1998 midterms — during which Newt thought the GOP would gain 30 seats without messaging or strong GOTV efforts and proved unable to properly balance conservative and moderate factions — would lead to the Fall of the House of Newt.  In a historical context, the summer’s campaign chaos may say something about not only the Gingrich candidacy but also any possible Gingrich presidency.

Ideology and Electability.  Silver opines that ” Gingrich’s overall ideological positioning isn’t bad given the mood of the Republican electorate” and fairly close to that of Perry, representing” something of a sweet spot for the Republican primary electorate.”  Silver also believes Newt “might ultimately run a net of about 4 points worse than someone like Mitt Romney nationally.”  Silver is likely wrong about almost all of this.

Silver seems to think Gingrich merely holds a few positions out of step with the conservative grassroots of the GOP.  However, Newt’s voting record was more moderate than later House Speakers Hastert and Boehner.  He has never been a traditional conservative on any axis, and the commentariat has not been alone in noticing.  Thus, Gingrich has engaged in a rolling series of flip-flops, on (among other issues) Rep. Paul Ryan’s budget plan, universal healthcare (including anindividual mandate), Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, education, and the cap-and-tax scheme for carbon emissions. (For immigration hardliners who didn’t like Perry calling them heartless, note Newt used the same word for them in the first GOP debate this year.)  He also will likely be shown to be on both sides of the role of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac played in the housing bubble (his involvement with the GSEs goes back further than commonly known, too).  In short, Newt is not Romney, but he’s not exactly NotRomney, either.

Silver thinks Gingrich’s ideological position might cause him to do 4% worse than Romney.  Even if Gingrich was as conservative as Perry, I think Silver overestimates the effect of ideology on the outcome of the election (and will blog on that further soon).  That disagreement aside, it is notable that Gingrich is perceived as more conservative than his actual record and positions have been.  His revolutionary rhetoric and takedown of Speaker Jim Wright had the establishment media painting him as an extremist before he ever took the Speaker’s chair.  When considering Obama’s two playbooks, it generally would be difficult for Obama to attack Romney as both a serial flip-flopper and an extremist — but the Dems would likely have an easy time convincing swing voters Newt was at least an extremist.  Thus, a Gingrich nomination arguably carries the risk of a Perry or Cain nomination with the casual voter, but with the risk of a not-much-better-than-Romney presidency for the right in terms of likely policy outcomes.

And that is before you get to personal issues, of which Newt has more than a few.  Time spent discussing them — and in some instances debunking them — is time not spent exploiting Obama’s miserable failures, so the establishment media will rummage through that baggage more zealously than a rogue TSA agent.  All told, Newt’s public image is such that, over the summer, polls showed somewhere between 42 and 63 percent of voters would never vote for him.  I think those numbers may be overstated, but he is sufficiently well-known that any charm offensive is unlikely to change minds outside GOPers and leaners.  Indeed, Newt’s favorables and positive intensity were declining even among Republicans and GOP leaners over the course of the campaign.

The current Gingrich surge is supposedly fueled by his debate performances.  If that was really true, he would have surged much earlier, as Newt is nothing if not a nimble debater.  Moreover, the two themes in those debates that resonate with GOPers are telling.  First, Newt’s earlier performances featured a lot of trying to stop candidates from attacking each other.  That made him seem like a team player, or someone who didn’t want to follow the establishment media moderator’s agenda.  But you know who this benefits?  More moderate candidates like Romney… and Gingrich.

Second, there is a lot of love out there for Newt’s ritual attacks on the debate moderators.  It plays well with conservatives, but one wonders how it plays with swing voters.  After all, the casual voter avoids politics most of the time in part because it’s confrontational.  And the casual voter may not share the right’s view of media bias (they likely have no opinion on the subject).  Thus, Gingrich’s fencing with the press will remind them why they don’t like politics and reinforce the negative image the Dems and media will be pushing if Newt becomes the front-runner.

Silver concludes that Newt’s “chances of winning the nomination are weaker than his polls alone would imply.”  On that much, we agree.

–Karl

188 Responses to “Turning an elephant into a Newt?”

  1. Ding!

    Karl (f8f210)

  2. Rick Perry-Um I would love to be Newt Gingrich’s VP but um…ah…..ooooops.

    DohBiden (ef98f0)

  3. Perry sucks ass.

    DohBiden (ef98f0)

  4. Romney-Rubio or Romney-Ryan in 2012!

    ColonelHaiku (09a0f9)

  5. I was very impressed with Robert Novak’s attack on Newt in his book. He seemed a dilettante in policy, coming up with ideas at a rapid pace but never carrying through. He is a contrast with Romney, though.

    Mike K (9ebddd)

  6. Gingrich-Rubio or Gingrich-Ryan 2012.

    FIFY.

    DohBiden (ef98f0)

  7. Gingrich is a very intelligent wonk with a wealth of useful ideas. Just don’t think he can overcome perceptions, whether based on fact or fiction.

    ColonelHaiku (09a0f9)

  8. It will be a somewhat painful undertaking as many will need to come to terms with the eventual nominee, whoever it ends up being… lol.

    ColonelHaiku (09a0f9)

  9. Obama is a socialist he thinks everything should be given to him but doesn’t think he should give anything to anyone.

    DohBiden (ef98f0)

  10. Biden hopes ridin’
    on Gnome from Rome Georgia
    if foo sh*ts wear it

    ColonelHaiku (09a0f9)

  11. Obama is a socialist he thinks everything should be given to him but doesn’t think he should give anything to anyone

    Coinkydink or pattern? you decide…

    http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-smallpox-20111113,0,4293298.story

    ColonelHaiku (09a0f9)

  12. Wasn’t John Lennon a reformed anti-war activist.

    He regretted his past decisions.

    DohBiden (ef98f0)

  13. As far as independent voters go, this is interesting,

    Three weeks ago, Rasmussen’s poll of likely voters showed Speaker Newt Gingrich trailing President Barack Obama by a whopping 27 percentage points (51 to 24 percent) among independent voters. Now, Rasmussen shows Obama’s lead over Gingrich has shrunk to just 6 points (41 to 35 percent) among independents. Obama also leads Gingrich by 6 points (44 to 38 percent) among all likely voters.

    Dana (4eca6e)

  14. Dana,

    The point about independents is why I specify the casual voter. “Independents” contain a lot of leaners, and the shift in that poll likely reflects movement among conservatives who don’t like the GOP label. You still end up with a 6% loss with likely voters, possibly more given the Ras house effect. Granted, early polling is not predictive, so it’s mostly useful to show that the most conservative element of the elctorate may be either leaving Cain or open to Newt as the next possible alternative. Whether that holds once Newt’s record gets a full airing is an open question.

    Karl (f8f210)

  15. It’s interesting how many Republicans are simply refusing to get on the Romney bandwagon. Is this election going to be about Anyone-But-Obama and Anyone-But-Romney?

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  16. Give it a week for the Democrat slime machine to make up some breathless allegations about Newt, another 2 weeks to stir the pot, and then it’s off to the next candidate. Palin, Bachmann, Romney, Cain… OK. Who’s next?

    bobdog (166386)

  17. Nice link, Colonel. One wonders what the Occupy crowd will that info . . .

    Icy (178cb3)

  18. “will do with that info”

    [mangled by my iPhone]

    Icy (178cb3)

  19. Karl understood, and no matter which subgroup of independents one looks at, it is indeed very early to put a lot of stock into the numbers…

    As far as but also, voteres are already aware of Newt’s skeletons so I don’t think there will be any surprises, mostly a rehashing of what’s already been aired. I do think he seems to have more self-awareness of his natural condescension and arrogance than his previous foray into campaigning. IIRC, didn’t he even publicly apologize to Paul Ryan last year after excoriating him re his budget proposal? So there’s that anyway.

    Dana (4eca6e)

  20. Newt’s management skills:
    Let’s not forget, that in the ’95-’96 Congress, Newt as Speaker was the Idea Man, Dick Armey (as Majority Leader) was the guy who actually ran the House.
    Newt needs a good “filter” who can winnow out the wheat from the chaff of his out-pouring of ideas,
    and force him to concentrate his energies on a limited number of priorities.

    In the coming GOP Administration, perhaps his eloquence and grasp of historical data would serve that administration best at the UN –
    a posting at State would be a natural if he was a better administrator, or had someone to hold (and use) the whip on that unruly mob at Foggy Bottom –
    for State is an institution that needs a thorough house-cleaning from top-to-bottom, and has for generations.

    AD-RtR/OS! (22b718)

  21. There is a scenario that we haven’t discussed, or if we did I missed it, and that is a deadlocked convention –
    I know such things are not supposed to happen in our current scheme of primaries, but with the field so bifurcated, anything can happen.

    Would it be unreasonable to think that a true deadlock between ABR and Romney, without a fall-back consensus from within the field as it currently exists,
    could lead to the drafting of a White Horse candidate to lead the forces of Constitutional Restoration to Victory?

    Saint Sarah of Wasilla?

    Don’t laugh, it could happen.

    AD-RtR/OS! (22b718)

  22. A pattern imo.

    DohBiden (ef98f0)

  23. With the exception of the Newsweek cover, the MSM has been very quiet about Romney-The-Cultist-Mormon. That will change after the nomination and Romney’s religious beliefs will be protrayed as extreme as devil worship and Wahhabism. As quiet as the journolist tools were about Reverend Wright’s church, you can be certain that they will attack the Mormon faith with the same intensity as get-Palin or get-Cain campaigns.

    PC14 (738e3d)

  24. TLC is filming a show portraying Muslims as everyday normal folk who are being maligned by misunderstanders of Islam…………excuse me if I puke.

    DohBiden (ef98f0)

  25. Kind of makes you wonder TLC doesn’t have a show showing a conservative family in a sympathetic light, doesn’t it?

    Simon Jester (7a6ee7)

  26. An entire generation views the 90s as a decade of prosperity . Newt can win over these voters. Newt is also perhaps the only Republican welcome to speak on college campuses without getting a pie thrown at him. He knows how to speak to youth.

    Dennis D (e0b996)

  27. Here’s another piece of the Newt rising dynamic than I have been picking up on in the last couple of weeks from talking to younger right-leaning voters. This finding may or many not be important—but.

    Many of them (in their late 20’s early 30’s) had grown up with not-at-all good impressions of Newt which were gained from his battered image in the media– his physical looks, his “hypocritical” personal flaws, his caricature as a disappointment/loser/failed politician, etc. Yet these were all only second hand impressions, because they are too young to remember him as Speaker and as a politician when he was operating at the height of his powers. Now, after seeing him in action in the debates and on the Sunday shows, and assessing his intelligence and strengths (as well as his weaknesses) first hand, on their own, and with their own eyes, they have reached a much more positive opinion of Newt Gingrich. Several of these younger voters have admitted that they are quite surprised at how favorably impressed they are with him and are definitely giving him a second look. This type of movement may possibly account for some of the changes in the “will never consider him” poll numbers over the summer and fall to now.

    elissa (0d296c)

  28. Probably not Simon.

    Anyways Newt lost me when he pandered to the black supremacists at NAACP.

    DohBiden (ef98f0)

  29. vote for 0bama
    and kiss your bunda adeus
    stay on The Message

    ColonelHaiku (09a0f9)

  30. I have to admit that Gingrich isn’t very socially conservative, but anyone who has followed him at all knows he is fiscally conservative. Consider both the government shutdowns of 1995-6 and the 4 balanced budgets the next four years.

    When the previous fiscal year ended on September 30, 1995, the president and the Republican-controlled Congress had not passed a budget. A majority of Congress members and the House Speaker, Newt Gingrich, had promised to slow the rate of government spending; however, this conflicted with the president’s objectives for education, the environment, Medicare, and public health. According to Clinton’s autobiography, their differences resulted from differing estimates of economic growth, medical inflation, and anticipated revenues.

    In response to Clinton’s unwillingness to make the budget cuts that the Republicans wanted, Newt Gingrich threatened to refuse to raise the debt limit, which would have caused the US Treasury to suspend funding other portions of the Government to avoid putting the country in default.

    According to Gingrich, positive impacts of the government shutdown included the balanced-budget deal in 1997 and the first four consecutive balanced budgets since the 1920s. In addition, he has stated that the first re-election of a Republican majority since 1928 was due in part to the Republican party’s hardline on the budget. The Republican Party lost net eight seats in the House 1996 elections, but retained a 228-207 seat majority. In the Senate, Republicans gained two seats.

    Kevin M (563f77)

  31. Something Silver isn’t considering in his analysis of the nomination: where do the other candidates stand? Who will they throw their support to in a contest between Gingrich and Romney?

    Cain: Gingrich, clearly, unless Romney gives him the VP slot, and maybe not even then.

    Perry: Not Romney, and his views seem to be more aligned with Gingrich, who wanted to close the Dept of Education 15 years ago (and could name it).

    Paul: Not Romney, and Gingrich is talking about auditing the Fed, probably for this reason.

    Bachman: unclear. Romney could offer her Ed Sec or HHS and allow her to use it to further her social agenda. Bachman is more driven by social and religious belief than the other candidates.

    Santorum: He could sway some social conservatives who don’t directly support him, but going for Romney would be a stretch. Unclear, though as he tends to take a longer-term view.

    Huntsman: Romney, clearly, but a Huntsman endorsement loses more than it gains.

    It seems unlikely that Romney wins unless he can get a majority of delegates on his own, because otherwise there’s not much love there.

    Kevin M (563f77)

  32. He knows how to speak to youth.

    He doesn’t talk down to them, which I’m sure they find refreshing.

    Kevin M (563f77)

  33. I’m a little worried that Cain could hold on to enough support to put Romney over the top. His erosion of support is inevitable tho because he’s so weak on substance.

    The VP will be chosen way too late to help the Nominee and someone like Rubio or West would be an imbecile to endorse before the balloting was begun.

    The Heartland will be making up their mind over Xmas vacation in discussion with relatives.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  34. And yes Allah is the moon god and is different from our god.

    DohBiden (ef98f0)

  35. 21.There is a scenario that we haven’t discussed, or if we did I missed it, and that is a deadlocked convention

    AD, it hasn’t been discussed as a thread as far as I know, but I have mentioned it as my best case scenario. My dream delusion hope is that in the midst of a deadlocked convention some combo of Ryan, Rubio, and Jindahl will be pressed into service.

    I have liked some of Gingrich’s debate sound bites, and I would rather be on his side than have him against my side because of his smartness and quickness, but I do not trust him to maintain a position (see ryan), to have the pulse of the people (see ryan), and he seems from afar to think enough of his own intellect not to listen to other’s ideas, which is not good.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  36. Kevin M (31)

    The second choice votes don’t necessarily break as one might guess:

    The actual equation, of course, depends on who stays in the race, who goes, and how other dynamics play out, in a contest in which, among those with a current preference, 69 percent say they yet may change their minds. While Romney, for instance, has a numerical lead for second choice among Cain supporters, Cain has a numerical lead for second choice among Romney supporters. Sliced another way, among those who currently support neither Romney, Cain nor Perry, 30 percent pick Romney as their second choice, 22 percent Cain, 15 percent Perry.

    Karl (f8f210)

  37. Turning an elephant a mastodon into a Newt?

    There. Fixed that for ‘ya. Please, please, please, nominate the fossil.

    DCSCA (9d1bb3)

  38. Doc, as much as I respect Ryan and Rubio, I don’t believe any “White Knight” can come out of the Congress –
    it is not an institution that engenders wide-spread respect among the base that will have to be held in any General Election,
    it is also suspect in the view of many Indies whose support is critical.
    Any “WK” will have to have had elected, administrative experience.
    Jindahl, though, is another thing.
    We will not turn this government over to someone without executive experience again for a very, very long time –
    Been there, Done that, Got the tattered shreds of the t-shirt!

    AD-RtR/OS! (22b718)

  39. There were a few minor problems with Obama other than having no executive experience. Besides, he had executive experience, running a Chicago-based educational foundation with Bill Ayers (one of those other minor problems)…

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  40. 38- more…

    If there is to be a WK due to a deadlocked convention, the mainstream type of candidate such as Mitch Daniels would be attractive,
    but it is appearant that his family is dead-set against the exposure of their situation in the hourly press scrum that would result.
    I respect a man who would shield the ones he loves from that experience.
    After all, the Presidency is but a fleeting moment, yet family is forever.

    That does leave us with a Jindahl, or as I previously mentioned, Palin;
    with all of the baggage that comes with both
    (how many times would we see excerpts of his SOTU response? – or her interview with Katie or “abdication” presser?);
    but the MSM – with all the support of the Axelrod weasels –
    will be unmerciless in exposing every real, alleged, and made-up flaw that they can imagine of whomever is the GOP candidate.
    It is what it is.

    AD-RtR/OS! (22b718)

  41. Doc, his “executive” experience then was as a figure-head who did not threaten the local establishment,
    something that could be said about his current position, BTW.
    Bill Ayers OTOH, appears to be who was actually running the project, and whose ideas were interjected into the Chicago schools.

    AD-RtR/OS! (22b718)

  42. I think Bobby J. has been a terrific governor for La. He has the intellectual and administrative chops to make a big impact for a long time to come wherever he serves his country. He has a great personal story. But after the nearly universal poor impression he made communications-wise in one of his few voyages on national TV, (the Team R response to the SOTU), my question is: does he have the personality to inspire a nation? How would he do in debates? Has his speaking style improved since then?

    elissa (0d296c)

  43. What struck me most about Jindal, was not the State of the Union deal, anyone can have a bad night, but
    how as the health care wunderkind, he basically abdicated that role, in the debate, and it was left
    to Sarah to carry that ball, but he did hold the line on the Gulf fustercluck on the cleanup, but he’s about Rubio’s age, he has time.

    narciso (ef1619)

  44. I’ll never forget how Gingrich managed the “Contract” votes, particularly on the balanced budget and term limits amendments. Sure, as he defended himself, he never promised they’d pass, only that they’d be voted on. But he hadn’t mentioned that he’d be working to defeat much of his “Contract” when it did get voted on.

    Further, and even more unforgivable, is the way he kept any vote from happening on repealing the ’94 ban until after the OK bombing, and then saw to it that there were poison pill amendments.

    He always thought he was clever enough to keep people from noticing things like that.

    Brett Bellmore (6652c2)

  45. Cain: Gingrich, clearly, unless Romney gives him the VP slot, and maybe not even then.

    Maybe not, indeed:

    “If someone else were chosen to run for the presidency, Mr. Cain, would you accept the VP slot?”

    “It depends upon who’s asking and the conditions in which they would like for me to do it,” Cain responded. “First, I would want to know clearly what my role would be. Secondly, if we are ideologically and idea-wise so far apart, I couldn’t do that, because I believe the vice president should be a spokesperson for the president.”

    He added that Mitt Romney has a 59-point economic growth plan “that’s got all kinds of stuff in it.” “I don’t agree with that,” Cain said. “So, right now, today, I could not be out there, helping him promote his 59-point economic jobs plan. I couldn’t do that. I like him as a businessman. If he gets [the nomination], I am going to support him. But I’d have to work with someone that I could complement, not someone that wants to put me in a role that I would not want to do.”

    Dana (4eca6e)

  46. 45. I hope Herm noticed the “Disturbed” Mitt the other day while the wind was swirling.

    I really don’t want to bank on a TEA insurgence this time out. Newt will have to do. With luck he’ll trip onto a master stroke a la McLame for VP, pandering to knuckledraggers on the far reactionary Right like moi.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  47. The only way a white knight scenario comes true is if the Romney campaign strikes a huge personal or political iceberg — something completely crippling, something much more serious than just a debate blunder or minor personal scandal. And it has to happen after he’s wrapped up sufficient primary delegates to be unbeatable — say, a week before the GOP convention. The iceberg would have to be something so huge that a general consensus emerged at the convention that Romney could not possibly win in the general election. I’m thinking something on the order of magnitude of a disabling stroke, or autographed VHS cassettes of Mitt in a gay porno snuff flick. And the other existing candidates with a theoretical chance (by which I mean Gingrich and Cain; some might include Perry still, but I don’t) would have had to have lost any glimmer of remaining appeal, to the point that the GOP, collectively, is equally certain that none of them is a viable alternative.

    Only at that point could a Mitch Daniels or a Paul Ryan or a Bobby Jindahl be drafted.

    So the possibility of a white knight isn’t zero. But it’s vanishingly small.

    Beldar (4fc5a1)

  48. Gee, Brett, did you ever stop to think that, like a lawyer who never asks a question in court that he doesn’t already know the answer to, that Newt didn’t take up the Clinton AW ban repeal because he knew that the votes weren’t there, and it is better not to vote on something than to bring it up and lose?
    Why do you think so little is getting voted upon in the Senate today?
    Do you think it is because Harry Reid doesn’t want a string of losses on his scorecard?

    AD-RtR/OS! (22b718)

  49. Beldar, all good points.
    It will be interesting to see how the primary/caucus season develops after the first of the year; then we’ll have a better idea of who has the cattle, and who’s just hat.

    AD-RtR/OS! (22b718)

  50. Good responses from Romney and Perry on Iran.

    ColonelHaiku (09a0f9)

  51. Fairly or not, I think Cain’s recent publicity has blown up his Veep chances (which had seemed pretty good). If I were Gov. Romney, I’d already be in serious talks with Marco Rubio’s people. I’d have him already getting foreign policy briefing and be doing serious in-depth vetting (as much as possibly can be done without the FBI’s assistance).

    Then, when Romney finishes either first or second in Iowa and cruises to a strong win in New Hampshire, he could early-announce Rubio as his running-mate just before South Carolina and, of course, Florida. But Romney needs to move boldly and decisively, and probably sooner rather than later, to try to co-opt his many doubters; he needs the same sort of amnesty from movement conservatives that John McCain bought himself (temporarily at least) by picking Sarah Palin.

    I’m not saying this because I’m pushing a narrative or thrilled with how things are going. My increasing resolve is to get involved in trying to reform the GOP primaries system after this election, no matter how it comes out, because it’s so obviously and badly broken. And my own website still displays a “Draft Paul Ryan” graphic in its sidebar.

    I’m just convinced, unhappily, that going into the actual primary voting in early January, it’s going to be very much Romney’s race to lose, and that’s how he’s running his primary campaign so far — i.e., cautiously, and with incredible discipline. Announcing a Veep very early would be a pronounced break with that strategy, but with the right choice it could solve most of Romney’s problems with the GOP base.

    I think Hillary is going to replace Biden anyway, but if Romney picked Rubio early, that would probably make that decision inevitable and might accelerate it.

    Beldar (4fc5a1)

  52. Newt is morally bankrupt.

    He cheated on his wife who was in the hospital recovering from cancer surgery.

    Then, years later, he blamed his disloyalty and adultery on his patriotism.

    Anita Busch (a025dd)

  53. He’s the GOP equivalent of John Edwards.

    Anita Busch (a025dd)

  54. @Anita: Newt’s own kids have debunked this lie, so maybe it’s time you come up with a new slander to sling.

    redc1c4 (fb8750)

  55. No, actually Anita, the first part is not exactly true, but it is curious how Edwards actually did
    what Newt was accused of and more. It’s sort of how
    Sharpton actually incited a murderous riot, whereas
    Sarah was accused of provoking a murder,

    narciso (ef1619)

  56. the problem at hand is not turning an elephant into a newt, but rather turning a RINO like Newt into a Republican.

    he’s just another beltway dirtbag, like Mittens, who doesn’t give a flying fart in a windstorm about what the people want or need, just what’s going to protect his personal perks and power.

    the MFM and the rest of the poser structure can try and force us to choose between these two incompetent fools and the SCOAMF, but all that’s going to do is cause us to concentrate on local races only and buy more ammo.

    redc1c4 (fb8750)

  57. You know, with all due respect to Ms. Busch, I journalist…I think that she should apologize for spreading an, um, dishonest statement about Mr. Gingrich.

    Because she just did. And I will bet you cash money that she never checked sources—-but that some of her favorite pundits wrote about it, so it must be true.

    Except the children say differently. Which has been reported several times.

    They must be lying, of course.

    Seriously, that is what is wrong with journalism today. It’s all about Teh Narrative™.

    By the way, I suspect that Mr. Gingrich is not a high quality person. But spreading lies about someone is never a good policy, journalist or not.

    Or should I say “Journolist”?

    Simon Jester (c8876d)

  58. He admitted to cheating on his first wife. His second wife was interviewed and spilled the beans on what was going on when.

    I know the truth is hard to handle, guys.

    Anita Busch (a025dd)

  59. He’s the GOP equivalent of John Edwards.

    Comment by Anita Busch

    Sorry, Ms. Busch… wrong, again. The equivalent of Edwards is found in the Reptile House of any zoo.

    ColonelHaiku (09a0f9)

  60. ColonelHaiku … no argument there. Scum of the Earth.

    Anita Busch (a025dd)

  61. Yeah, Ms. Busch. Those kids are sure lying. I’m sure you know much more about the situation.

    Given your own background, I would think you would be, well, more interested in finding out what the principles are saying.

    But it doesn’t fit your narrative, does it? Just don’t be surprised when you are hoisted by your own little partian petard.

    Simon Jester (c8876d)

  62. Oh, and Ms. Busch?

    I found this in about one minute:

    http://www.creators.com/conservative/jackie-gingrich-cushman/setting-the-record-straight.html

    Best part? I don’t even like Mr. Gingrich. But I like spreading falso rumors even less.

    And by the way, don’t change the goalposts: you were repeating the lie that he announced he was divorcing her while she was in her hospital bed.

    Simon Jester (c8876d)

  63. Setting the record straight.

    I’m talking about the story of my father’s visit to my mother while she was in the hospital in 1980.

    For years, I have thought about trying to correct the untrue accounts of this hospital visit. After all, I was at the hospital with them, and saw and heard what happened. But I have always hesitated, as it was a private family matter and my mother is a very private person. In addition, for the four people involved, it was one of a million interactions and was not considered a defining event by any of us.

    Later that summer, Mom went to Emory University Hospital in Atlanta for surgery to remove a tumor. While she was there, Dad took my sister and me to see her.

    It is this visit that has turned into the infamous hospital visit about which many untruths have been told. I won’t repeat them. You can look them up online if you are interested in untruths. But here’s what happened:

    My mother and father were already in the process of getting a divorce, which she requested.

    Dad took my sister and me to the hospital to see our mother.

    She had undergone surgery the day before to remove a tumor.

    The tumor was benign.

    As with many divorces, it was hard and painful for all involved, but life continued.

    As have many families, we have healed; we have moved on.

    We are not a perfect family, but we are knit together through common bonds, commitment and love.

    My mother and father are alive and well, and my sister and I are blessed to have a close relationship with them both.

    Dana (4eca6e)

  64. Thanks for backing that up, Dana. I’m always amazed at what people “just know.” And you watch: people will begin to say that the Gingrich daughter is lying. That is how deep their hatred and partisanship has become. Sigh.

    Simon Jester (c8876d)

  65. and you can thank the Clinton administration and former outhouse research specialist – and current “respected journalist” – Georgie Steponpoupolus for that last “hospital bed divorce” lie.

    ColonelHaiku (09a0f9)

  66. You would also think that someone who had suffered at the hands of rumors would be sensitive to this particular topic.

    But as usual, it’s so…different…when it applies to people you do not like or with whom you do not agree.

    Simon Jester (c8876d)

  67. “Scott Pelley joins the debate claiming death warrant for American al Qaeda member is outside the law. Gingrich reads him a lecture rightly pointing out that waging war on the US puts you outside the law.”

    – Jonathan Tobin

    Who knew Pelley was running for POTUS?!?!

    ColonelHaiku (09a0f9)

  68. Actually David Osborne, surfaced that first in Mother Jones as I recall.

    narciso (ef1619)

  69. Note how he floats the more lurid allegations first,
    I’m surprised he didn’t end up working for Politico.

    http://motherjones.com/politics/1984/11/newt-gingrich-shining-knight-post-reagan-right

    narciso (ef1619)

  70. Newt Gingrich CHEATED on his wife? He admitted to it. His second wife accidentally spilled the beans in an interview about when the AFFAIR was going on.

    Do you think this man is a moral man?

    Anita Busch (a025dd)

  71. @Simon Jester, I never once said what you purported that I said.

    I said he CHEATED on his wife, not divorcing her in a hospital.

    Are you disputing that he CHEATED on his sick wife??

    Anita Busch (a025dd)

  72. So, all of you think that a man cheating on his sick wife is okay?

    Anita Busch (a025dd)

  73. Anita, what are your views on the marital fidelity of one William Jefferson Clinton – the convicted perjurer?

    AD-RtR/OS! (22b718)

  74. FDR
    Ike
    JFK
    LBJ
    Bill Clinton

    They can all be President but apparently Newt is not allowed to run, because he cheated
    on his wife?

    elissa (0d296c)

  75. Beldar, have you seen the latest Uncommon Knowledge interview, with Thomas Sowell?
    Some interesting comments by Dr. Sowell on the GOP field.

    AD-RtR/OS! (22b718)

  76. Anita,

    I don’t condone anyone cheating on their spouse and from what I read in Scripture, neither does God.

    He does, however, forgive those who recognize their sin and repent of it. He alone knows their sincerity.

    With that, I think that one who has cheated and repented of said act has not exempted himself from office of the president. Of course I’m in the minority in this because clearly when Clinton fell from grace, the watch word was that it was no one’s business what two consenting adults did. How did you feel about that?

    If Gingrich has renounced his previous behavior then I don’t have a problem with him running.

    Clearly, as evidenced by President Obama, faithfulness to a spouse does not ensure a good president.

    Dana (4eca6e)

  77. I can’t stand the Clinton’s. Either one of them. I think they are BOTH morally bankrupt.

    Elissa, Newt ran on the family values platform. He’s as morally bankrupt as the Clinton’s. He’s a hypocrite, too. AND he’s a liar (just like the Clintons) … he blamed his marital infidelity on patriotism.

    Can you all really not understand the basic disconnect with being someone of good character, or you just like to argue?

    Anita Busch (a025dd)

  78. Ah, but Dana, how do we know he’s been faithful?
    Is that the only item in his personal life that is in general circulation, because there seems to be a dearth of other information that lays out the parameters of that life.

    AD-RtR/OS! (22b718)

  79. And by the way, don’t change the goalposts: you were repeating the lie that he announced he was divorcing her while she was in her hospital bed.

    No, she didn’t. She made up a brand new story, that I’d never heard before: that he cheated on his wife while she was in hospital. How she knows this, I don’t know.

    Even if he did have relations with his second wife during the days when his first wife was in hospital (and I’m not aware of any basis for supposing this to be true), is it still “cheating” when the marriage is already over and they’ve agreed to get divorced? Does she still have a reasonable expectation of his fidelity? And why should it matter whether she’s in hospital or at home? Her expectations are the same in both places.

    Milhouse (ea66e3)

  80. @78 … your words are disguting.

    Anita Busch (a025dd)

  81. Well, speaking for myself as a knuckle-dragging, scum-of-the-Earth, unrepentant gun-clinger;
    I like to argue!
    Your values may vary.

    AD-RtR/OS! (22b718)

  82. Late to the party, but Beldar… post #47 was masterfully funny, and yet insightful. You are wise… but there’s a sadness to your wisdom.

    ColonelHaiku (09a0f9)

  83. My words are “disguting(sic)”?

    How is it that pointing out the vast blanks in the life of the man who is President of the United States is disgusting?
    You have a strange sense of moral outrage.

    AD-RtR/OS! (22b718)

  84. They will turn to Rick Scott as VP probably.

    Anita Busch (a025dd)

  85. You know it really doesn’t matter what the truth, even if one is of sterling character and integrity,
    if ‘the narrative’ deems it necessary to utterly
    destroy their public character, they will do it.
    Conversely they will obfuscate the public behavior
    of someone they deem necessary to their goals.

    Newt has somersaulted more than Nadia Comanici, on AGW, on Fannie and Freddie, on the Iraq war,

    narciso (ef1619)

  86. AD,

    Clearly, as we’ve witnessed this weekend with Paterno, no one is quite what they present themselves to be; however for the sake of this discussion, I’m going to assume President Obama is faithful. I realize the MSM will do everything to dover for him but with that, I haven’t seen any evidence to the contrary.

    However, because with most people there is a great disparity between their public and private life, I wouldn’t be the least bit surprised if dirt came out on him, too.

    Dana (4eca6e)

  87. @83, first of all, your pettiness is obvious. Secondly, you are using pure innuendo to try to smear someone’s character. Yes, I find that disgusting.

    Anita Busch (a025dd)

  88. What was the quote from Keynes about changing one’s mind when the facts change?

    AD-RtR/OS! (22b718)

  89. I’m auditioning for a gig in the MSM.

    And, I’m not being petty, I thoroughly dispise the “gentleman”.

    AD-RtR/OS! (22b718)

  90. careful, AD. Colonel heard that Obama’s Commie/mentor Frank Marshall Davis found Barry snorting up a line of blow and told him if he ever saw him do that again, he’d “rub his nose in it”.

    ColonelHaiku (09a0f9)

  91. Can you all really not understand the basic disconnect with being someone of good character, or you just like to argue?

    Anita, I’m curious if you think that a person – even someone like Newt – can have a conversion experience (like Newt to Catholicism) and live a changed life? If he can, does that still negate him from running for POTUS? Are our candidates to have lived sin-free lives? If not, which are acceptable and which are not?

    Dana (4eca6e)

  92. Chortle!

    AD-RtR/OS! (22b718)

  93. Why can it be so hard to communicate at times?
    Oh yes, people don’t listen before they respond.

    Anita, I don’t believe anyone said anything about whether Newt cheated on his wife, they were commenting on your reference to “in the hospital after cancer surgery”. As the reference above states, the divorce was already in the works before the hospital visit, and there was no cancer.

    That is all…

    Except, let’s go for a “nuclear option” as a ticket, Palin and Walker from Wisconsin. That will cause a few folk to be besides themselves. Walker has plenty of foreign policy experience, dealing with Illinois, just to the south…

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  94. We will know their acceptability by the way they are treated by the priestly class MSM, which is populated by very discerning saints – whom we should all attempt to emulate.

    AD-RtR/OS! (22b718)

  95. Let he who has not sinned cast the first midget.

    ColonelHaiku (09a0f9)

  96. Doc, don’t forget his super-power confrontation with the PE unions – their actions would put Khrushchev to shame.

    AD-RtR/OS! (22b718)

  97. Dana, I think that if a man does not take his wedding vows seriously, he will not take ANY oath seriously. He betrayed his wife and then blamed it on patriotism. I don’t see that as taking responsibility for his actions or even being remorseful about it, do you?

    Anita Busch (a025dd)

  98. @97 ColonelHaiku … I could cast that midget.

    Anita Busch (a025dd)

  99. 91. I believe Newt’s Scuzzi debacle and being eviscerated by a TEA partisan early before the Aegean might have gotten his attention.

    Road to Damascus epiphany, perhaps not, but I believe he knows which way the wind blows where Mittens never will.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  100. So, did you vote for Clinton or Bush, or Dole,

    narciso (ef1619)

  101. AD–since Anita is so knowledgeable about what happened inside Newt’s marriage over thirty years ago, she must also fancy herself as an expert on the intracacies of the Obama marriage. Or, if not, perhaps she can do some internet research on that and let us know what she finds out.

    elissa (0d296c)

  102. Well said, AD, but I was figuring that into what made it the nuclear option, that it would make people “go ballistic” and make “their heads explode”.

    But you are right in terms of knowing how to deal with superpower confrontation. Between Walker’s obvious record, and palin being nicknamed “the bear” by the Russians, maybe Putin would immediately pull out of Georgia and beg forgiveness.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  103. The second choice votes don’t necessarily break as one might guess (#36)

    Things are fluid. A Rasmussen poll [possible subscription wall] from last week in Florida showed:

    In a three-way race between the top three candidates, it’s Cain 35%, Romney 31% and Gingrich 25%.

    In a two-way race, Cain edges Romney 46% to 41%. But Cain and Gingrich are essentially tied in Florida, with the former speaker at 43% and Cain at 42%. Gingrich leads Romney 47% to 40% on a two-way ballot.

    Cain’s votes here go mostly to Newt if Mitt is out, and so do Romney’s if Cain falters. Now, that’s just Florida, and it doesn’t suppose endorsements, but it does show that things are moving quickly and Romney’s not getting a lot of love.

    Kevin M (563f77)

  104. Hey Elissa, your sarcasm is very Christian of you. Go to church much?

    Anita Busch (a025dd)

  105. Anita, seriously, you use the words of Newt against him that were uttered prior to his “finding of religion” that he now professes.
    I have heard interviews of a more recent vintage where he does not spare himself from criticism of his actions during that prior time.
    Perhaps it is all just a con, but then again, he just might be sincere in his change of heart.
    If you are the journalist you claim to be, would it not be just and proper to investigate the matter more fully so as to make a more informed decision?

    AD-RtR/OS! (22b718)

  106. Anita,

    I’m reluctant to judge the remorse and repentance of any person other than myself (and even, I’d prefer to leave that up to God), however, I do believe people of good moral standing and even those with a thriving relationship with God can go off the rails. We all fall short of the mark, we are all made of the dust of the earth, and we all make missteps in our lives. Clearly, some worse than others. I’ve been in the worse category and I can tell you that repentance does beget forgiveness which then begets a changed life. So it’s quite possible that Newt’s repentance was sincere and genuine and that he now lives his life according to his professed faith.

    At a certain point in time, he may not have taken his marital oath seriously. At this point in time, it is very possible that he does.

    Addressing an issue some regard as a hindrance if he runs for president, former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich confessed to evangelical leader James Dobson in a radio interview airing tomorrow to moral failing regarding two previous marriages and said he has “gotten on my knees and sought God’s forgiveness.”

    Gingrich said the subject of his two divorces, including an affair that took place as he led impeachment proceedings against President Clinton, is a “very painful topic and I confess that to you directly.”

    Dana (4eca6e)

  107. It’s harder to gauge their private bahavior, so we only have his public acts to judge him by.

    narciso (ef1619)

  108. Comment by MD in Philly — 11/12/2011 @ 6:58 pm

    Speaking of our KGB/FSB friend, have you seen his new campaign vid’s that are exploding fem heads in Europe?
    You can check it out over at Power Line:
    Putin’s Army!

    AD-RtR/OS! (22b718)

  109. “Godwin” Alert on Aisle-106!

    AD-RtR/OS! (22b718)

  110. “It plays well with conservatives, but one wonders how it plays with swing voters”. B.S.! No one likes a weasel, and that’s what the interviewers have been. Gingrich stood up to them. What the hell is he supposed to do? Appease them? That shows weakness. He’s been spot on each time, especially tonight in the debate when he skewered the moderator on the point of law. Swing voters know the score.

    vech (76d9aa)

  111. You know, with all due respect to Ms. Busch, I journalist…I think that she should apologize for spreading an, um, dishonest statement about Mr. Gingrich.

    Because she just did. And I will bet you cash money that she never checked source

    Oh, she knows — She’s posted the same lie here before and been corrected, with links and such, but she doesn’t care. Posting lies is her job it seems.

    Kevin M (563f77)

  112. Oops! There was another of these interminable debates tonight?

    AD-RtR/OS! (22b718)

  113. Careful, Kevin, you’re being “petty”.

    AD-RtR/OS! (22b718)

  114. I don’t trust New York Times’ Nate Silver. I think Newt Gingrich will might get the nominee because he know about more issues better than other candidates. Gingrich is a conservative. He won the debate other night.

    ml (aa7950)

  115. Which of the Ten Commandments does sarcasm fall under, Anita?

    elissa (0d296c)

  116. And, Ms Busch, God dislikes those who bear false witness, too. Not very Christian, hmmmh?

    Kevin M (563f77)

  117. @78 … your words are disguting.

    What’s disgusting about them? Do the names Vera Baker and Larry St Clair mean nothing to you? Why don’t you try looking them up, and then tell me whether it’s disgusting

    Milhouse (ea66e3)

  118. elissa… it’s the little known 9a… specifically Part 9, subpart a…

    Thou shall not bear demeaning witticisms against your neighbor, his wife, his children, nor his ass.

    ColonelHaiku (09a0f9)

  119. You have to wonder, narcisco, what is the compulsion of the Brady’s about “high-capacity” magazines when Hinkley used a 6-shot, .22LR cal. revolver to shoot Reagan et al?

    AD-RtR/OS! (22b718)

  120. Hey, Col, lets leave the livestock out of this; they’ve got enough problems without involving them in ours.

    AD-RtR/OS! (22b718)

  121. There’s no hope for any of you.

    Anita Busch (a025dd)

  122. 122 add…
    and don’t even get me started on the conflation of magazines with clips.

    AD-RtR/OS! (22b718)

  123. Which is why we do not read the LAT, and much else of the MSM; most of which can be described by the old Soviet saying:

    There is no izvestia in Pravda, and no pravda in Izvestia!

    AD-RtR/OS! (22b718)

  124. Well we have the Herald which gave rise to the following phrase ‘friends don’t let friends read McClatchy (I didn’t come up with it)

    narciso (ef1619)

  125. There’s no hope for any of you.

    You know Anita, I entered into this discussion with you in good faith as I answered your questions with thought, as well as attempting to explore your thoughts and assumptions.

    Next time I will not waste my time.

    Dana (4eca6e)

  126. Um…Mr. Busch? You wrote:

    “…He cheated on his wife who was in the hospital recovering from cancer surgery….”

    Cheat or not, the decision to divorce was prior to her hospitalization. As I think you knew, when you decided to repeat a smear.

    Actually, my bet is that you didn’t look into it at all, but simply repeated what you had heard. Because, again, it fits your silly Narrative.

    I think you should look up the word “sophistry,” ma’am.

    And quit moving goalposts. To be still more direct, you personally were attacked through false statements and rumors, mostly from people who wouldn’t make the effort to…well, look up the facts first.

    But you will continue to shuck and jive over this. Tiresome.

    Simon Jester (7a6ee7)

  127. Be careful, Colonel. First they came for the sarcasm. But Haiku poetry may not be far down on the offense chopping block.

    elissa (0d296c)

  128. There’s no hope for any of you.

    Comment by Anita Busch

    and then we die… shucks!

    ColonelHaiku (09a0f9)

  129. Poetry, you call that poetry?

    Poetry is a Ma-Duece, with an endless belt.

    AD-RtR/OS! (22b718)

  130. heretofore unknown
    eleventh commandment reads
    vote REPUBLICAN!

    ColonelHaiku (09a0f9)

  131. anita flees scene
    of her latest thought crime but
    crime scene tape thrown down

    ColonelHaiku (09a0f9)

  132. Colonel’s sweet Haiku
    is always poetry to
    my ears and soul

    elissa (0d296c)

  133. one putter in hand
    is now worth two in the busch
    wish it wasn’t true

    ColonelHaiku (09a0f9)

  134. Well I figure as an entertainment reporter, Anita
    didn’t really look that deeply into the political milieu common to the community, but one has to note
    that Michael Ovitz not Newt or Cheney hired Pellicano.

    narciso (ef1619)

  135. sorry, elissa… please forgive colonel’s lack of taste with last haiku… so soryy!

    ColonelHaiku (09a0f9)

  136. And I want to go on record that there are several posters here who never descend to rudeness, snark, or moving goalposts. They always make for important reading, whether or not I agree or disagree with them. I’m thinking of:

    DRJ
    Dana
    Aphrael

    I can’t think of single time that any of them posted an attack on anyone else.

    I salute you with a nice whiskey, and tell you honestly, that I envy your styles.

    Simon Jester (7a6ee7)

  137. I will choose to look at that last Haiku you posted @138 as an example of exceptionally very bad timing.

    elissa (0d296c)

  138. Taking the high road
    Around hypocrites these days
    I too often fail

    Simon Jester (7a6ee7)

  139. prefer redemption
    much sweeter than ritual
    known as seppuku

    ColonelHaiku (09a0f9)

  140. hypocritic oath
    now followed but colonel left
    midget strewn highway

    ColonelHaiku (09a0f9)

  141. Dwarf tossing contest
    A constant for the Colonel
    Robert Reich nervous

    Simon Jester (7a6ee7)

  142. most folks not know that
    Reich had sweet role as Kramer’s
    li’l bud on Seinfeld

    ColonelHaiku (09a0f9)

  143. ==he blamed his marital infidelity on patriotism==

    Anita repeated this strange comment about Newt twice and so I wanted to try to figure out where she got that from. The closest I can come up with is this:

    In a 2011 interview with David Brody of the Christian Broadcasting Network Gingrich addressed his past infidelities by saying, “There’s no question at times in my life, partially driven by how passionately I felt about this country, that I worked too hard and things happened in my life that were not appropriate.”

    My own sense is that reading into that statement that he’s saying he blames his infidelities on “patriotism” is rather a bit of a stretch and really quite dishonest. YMMV

    elissa (0d296c)

  144. Indeed, elissa. Teh Narrative™ must be served. Facts don’t matter.

    I had a student recently tell me that she had to go out of town to a “community organizing” event. What about?, I asked. Why, to promote non fossil fuel energy issues and the great college favorite, “sustainability.”

    So what alternatives did my student want to promote, I asked?

    No answer. When pressed, she said she didn’t know much about it.

    Um. Feelings, not facts. This was a college senior, by the way. Nice person. Traveling light on this topic, however.

    All I could do is shake my head.

    Simon Jester (7a6ee7)

  145. Anita repeated this strange comment about Newt twice and so I wanted to try to figure out where she got that from.

    Me too. I searched for “gingrich infidelity patriotism” and came up with pretty much the same thing you did.

    My own sense is that reading into that statement that he’s saying he blames his infidelities on “patriotism” is rather a bit of a stretch and really quite dishonest. YMMV

    That is my sense too. But it’s exactly the sort of dishonesty I’ve come to expect from Anita Busch. I know she’s got lots of fans around here, but the truth is the truth.

    Milhouse (ea66e3)

  146. Well, I’ll have to think of something rude to say to Simon Jester…
    I guess I must admit to snarkiness at times.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  147. Gee, Brett, did you ever stop to think that, like a lawyer who never asks a question in court that he doesn’t already know the answer to, that Newt didn’t take up the Clinton AW ban repeal because he knew that the votes weren’t there, and it is better not to vote on something than to bring it up and lose?

    Didn’t stop him from bringing his “Contract” up for a vote, did it? Newt didn’t refrain from bringing repeal of the ’94 ban up for a vote because it would lose. We knew quite well it would lose. He refrained because bringing it up for a vote would have told us which Republicans we’d just elected had lied to us about their position on it.

    After the OK bombing, he could bring it to a vote, because it provided them with an excuse for why they were breaking their campaign promises.

    Having issues brought to a vote isn’t just a way of getting laws passed. It’s a way to provided voters with information on where their recently elected ‘representatives’ really stand on those issues. Denying us the vote was a way of denying us the information, it was nothing less than a way of making sure we wouldn’t know who’d lied their way into getting gun owners’ votes.

    Not something I tolerate from supposed allies.

    Brett Bellmore (6652c2)

  148. So what alternatives did my student want to promote, I asked?

    No answer. When pressed, she said she didn’t know much about it.

    Um. Feelings, not facts. This was a college senior, by the way. Nice person. Traveling light on this topic, however.

    There’s a major anti-fracking effort going on in NY at the moment. Some fellow came to my door asking me to sign a petition against fracking; I told him that I was for it, and he seemed honestly shocked. I don’t think he had ever in his life come across someone who didn’t share his ideology. He couldn’t fathom how anybody could be for fracking. He was prepared to deal with apathy and laziness and people who didn’t consider the issue very important, but not for actual disagreement.

    Milhouse (ea66e3)

  149. I usually only employ the ‘princess bride’ and ‘python’ jibes in moderation.

    narciso (ef1619)

  150. Fracking is a horrible sounding word. The industry needs to call it by another name. I truly believe the word itself turns people off. Many folks may not have a clue what the process is, but it sounds right to their ears that they’d be against fracking.

    elissa (0d296c)

  151. I would say we’re seriously ‘fracked’ by people too dense to figure out the facts, then again that’s how we got Obama.

    narciso (ef1619)

  152. He was prepared to deal with apathy and laziness and people who didn’t consider the issue very important, but not for actual disagreement.

    Heh. I think the left generally assumes this re most issues: They are prepared to talk the unsuspecting into their viewpoint, guilt them into their view, and successfully prey on an assumed ignorance of people but what they are not prepared for is an intelligently articulate disagreement and return of facts to counter their assumptions. I’ve seen many videos from various OWS haps and this is consistently played out by the those protesting. Make noise and they won’t figure out we have no clue what we’re talking about….except when they’re hit in the face with sound rebuttal, the noise gets louder but there is no equally sound and reasonable argument made in return.

    Dana (4eca6e)

  153. There is a story, treated as confirmed fact, that someone’s drinking water was made flammable by fracking. I imagine it would be possible for fracking to disturb ground water/wells if done in the wrong location, but I’ve thought the story to be urban legend, or an isolated incident with an explanation.

    I did hear on the radio (hence authoritative) that some scientist (even more authoritative) suggested fracking can cause earthquakes, including the increased incidence and severity of them in Oklahoma… just lettin’ ya’ll know

    My guess is that the term comes from “fracturing” something.

    It is resulting in some interesting things. A friend recently told me of someone he knows who was a simple farmer that was generous with what little he had, including donating to some charity my friend new of. All of a sudden this guy has millions from allowing fracking on/under his land and is trying to transition from making small-time donations to making wise use of millions.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  154. My uncle’s drinking water was flammable 30 years ago, due to natural gas, no fracking involved. It’s not exactly unknown in areas where the gas occurs, after all. Alas, all *I* had in my water was hydrogen sulfide, and nobody pays you to drill a well for that.

    Brett Bellmore (6652c2)

  155. I read and listen to hit after hit against Romney but I ask one question. Who else in the entire field would be able to withstand the onslought of conservative pundits and remain on top? What are we going to do? Are we going to gang up on him like last time to push him out of the race so we can put someone on the ticket that can’t possibly win? I love all our candidates but come on! We’re not “settling” for Mitt Romney. On every major issue he is a conservative. He’s going to repeal Obamacare. Who else in the entire field would be more compelled to do it after the bullshit he’s been through with Romneycare? He’s going to cut taxes, and he has the actual experience of working in the private sector to get the government out of the way and spur the economy. Is he pro-life? Yes. Who in their right minds think a Mormon’s default position is “pro-abortion”? How about character? Herman Cain apparently is going to have problems whether they’re deserved or not. Newt? Romney has always been a boring but good and decent man. Is that settling? Which of the governors, the only ones with real executive experience in the real world is more qualified? Of those which ones had a utopia where everyone agreed with them so they could do whatever the hell they wanted and which ones had to fight and scratch for everything they did achieve? In this day and age Abe Lincoln and George Washington would have a hard time getting elected in this environment and would have lost the last election by a landslide. Think of 2008 WITHOUT Palin. McCain would have lost worse than he did. That’s what happens when you try to elect a career politician, especially a senator and not a governor. Dole ring a bell? After the last “historical” election when white people purged their guilt and minorities finally got their day yet after the dust settled the country saw what happened when you elect an inexperienced, “cool”, popular idealogue and that will cut both ways in this election whether we want to admit it or not. Wait till the pundits get their way and screw up Mitt’s nomination and see what happens. We ain’t seen nuthin yet when it comes to an Obama presidency without the worry of re-election. The dirty little secret is that he’s only scared of one candidate… Romney. He’s petrified of a Romney/conservative minority VP choice. Do you think the character assasination of Cain and the attempt to do the same thing with Rubio is an accident, especially before Iowa? They want these guys out of the picture right now and they’re watching the Republicans self destruct by constantly going after Romney and promoting candidates that don’t have a prayer. I’ll bet they even came up with the term “anti-Romney” candidate. We know them but THEY KNOW US.They’re trying to deflate conservatives and sour conservatives on Romney NOW, because after the nomination all the silent Independents and blue dog Democrats that would have voted for Romney and no one else will stay home.

    [note: released from moderation. –Stashiu]

    Dave B (982f20)

  156. Comment by Brett Bellmore — 11/12/2011 @ 8:59 pm

    I’ve been an FFL since 1993, and I don’t recall the GOP promising, in the ’94 election to repeal the AW ban as part of the Contract With America.
    I’ve printed the eight points out, perhaps you could point out to me which point covered that?

    1-require all laws that apply to the rest of the country also apply to Congress;
    2-select a major, independent auditing firm to 3-conduct a comprehensive audit of Congress for waste, fraud or abuse;
    4-cut the number of House committees, and cut committee staff by one-third;
    5-limit the terms of all committee chairs;
    6-ban the casting of proxy votes in committee;
    7-require committee meetings to be open to the public;
    8-require a three-fifths majority vote to pass a tax increase;
    guarantee an honest accounting of the Federal Budget by implementing zero base-line budgeting.

    I realize that passions were high at that time, and that since the ban passed by a one-vote margin, many thought that it could be easily repealed.
    However, “counting coup” (which is what pushing a vote on a matter that had no chance of ever being signed into law would have been) while satisfying for those doing the counting, can be destructive to the ultimate objective by wasting hard-fought for political capital that might be better expended on more valuable objectives.

    AD-RtR/OS! (22b718)

  157. I have to keep going on this… sorry. If I were an idealistic left winger that wants Obama re-elected and I concentrated on the Republican primaries so that my candidate has the best chance of winning I would… do exactly what is being done with the guy that scares the shit out of me. I would bait people into accepting the premise that Obamacare and “Romneycare” are one in the same… which they are not but who cares? Then after throwing this spitball out and watching his numbers go down and others go up I’d eliminate VP candidates quickly and decisively in case he did get nominated. Knowing the atmosphere in light of the Tea Party movement and the mood of voters I’d throw out a bone and give the appearance of support and publicly state that Romney is really conservative on say… the abortion issue while at the same time mentioning in every single article that Republicans are looking for a “Romney-replacement”. Hook, line, and sinker. A vote for Romney is a vote for Obama “light”. In THIS election it is the complete opposite of past elections. They WANT a Newt, Herman Cain, Michele Bachmann (all of whom I love) because they can then play the race card and pit American against American. They’re not going to vote in the primaries for Mitt Romney like they did for McCain. Trust me on this. He’s the LAST one they want to see in the general election.

    [note: released from moderation. –Stashiu]

    Dave B (982f20)

  158. Leftards stfu assaulting and raping kids is a phenomenon seen anywhere in America.

    Sorry for the O/T.

    DohBiden (ef98f0)

  159. And watch if Newt supports Adult Stem Cell research the left will use his cancer-stricken wife to bash him. These opprtunistic vultures make me sick.

    DohBiden (ef98f0)

  160. @ AD-RtR/OS! (#75 — 11/12/2011 @ 6:36 pm): Thanks for the recommendation. I enjoyed Mr. Sowell’s observations.

    Beldar (4fc5a1)

  161. Probably was bit harsh on Anita, but she posted the same thing last week, with the same response. Apparently she cannot support any candidate who has been unfaithful and is immune to nuance there.

    Me, it depends. Newt cheated on his wife in 1980, and then on her replacement in the late 90’s. Not good, but this gets weighed against other things. If it came out tomorrow that he was currently cheating on wife #3, that would be another matter entirely, and his candidacy would end.

    And it isn’t just because I support Gingrich (which I do).

    The President has admitted that, back in the 80’s, he smoked marijuana and perhaps used other drugs. That was then, this is now, and I don’t hold that against him. I do hold quite a few other things he is doing today against him, but not that.

    And again, if it came out tomorrow that Obama was smoking pot in the White House, I would hope that his own supporters would have issues with that, too.

    Hmmm … would explain a lot, actually.

    Kevin M (563f77)

  162. Fracking is a horrible sounding word. The industry needs to call it by another name.

    “Frelling”?

    (SF reference)

    Kevin M (563f77)

  163. FWIW, “fracking” has been a familiar term and concept around the oil patch for many, many decades. What’s new is the extent and specific technologies now being employed in combination with things like multi-directional drilling. It’s all about getting more out of what you have, part of a whole spectrum of secondary and tertiary recovery methods, which have long been an important driving force in the oil & gas bidness. People who think it’s some radical new environmental menace tend to be ill-informed and (not coincidentally at all) founts of misinformation and vivid, unfounded opinions.

    Beldar (4fc5a1)

  164. The best that can be said for either Gingrich or Perry is that Gingrich is the proverbial fox and Perry the proverbial hedgehog.

    I’m afraid that Romney is too much the fox and too little the hedgehog; I know he knows many interesting things, but I’m unconvinced how thoroughly he understands the two or three most important things that are crucial to the position he seeks to occupy. I will grant you that he says the words a hedgehog ought to say, and he says them well, with gravitas and dignity. But has past words and, more troublingly, deeds, have sometimes been at odds with those words. Worse, I fear his technocrat instincts, and I remain unconvinced of the sincerity of his revulsion at the extent of modern federal government penetration into spheres outside its constitutional ambit.

    (That last quality, by contrast, is one thing on which I have no doubts about Gov. Perry, whose default and hipshot reaction is always skepticism whenever anyone suggests government ought be doing something more or different. It is one of his hedgehog truths.)

    What I want is a nominee who’s a thorough-going, articulate, and committed hedgehog. I want someone brilliant who applies that brilliance as part of his faithful and, indeed, reflexive adherence to the lessons taught by Hayek (Knowledge Problem, Road to Serfdom) about government intervention and control. I want someone who understands all the moving pieces and the political reality underlying the Beltway kabuki shows, but who doesn’t use that knowledge to aggregate further power unto the government, but instead to disassemble our current “entitlement state” and return the underlying power to, respectively, the states and the people.

    I want Ronald Reagan again. Sigh. I feel like such a cliche!

    Beldar (4fc5a1)

  165. I’ve been an FFL since 1993, and I don’t recall the GOP promising, in the ’94 election to repeal the AW ban as part of the Contract With America.

    I don’t recall saying that it was part of the “Contract”. What I said was that,

    1. Newt brought the ‘Contract’ to a vote, even knowing that much of it wouldn’t pass. (Seeing to it that some of it wouldn’t pass.) So the idea that he wouldn’t bring something to a vote if he wasn’t confident it would pass was BS. Did it all the time.

    2. The ban originally passed by a narrow vote.
    Let’s be clear about this: If, in ’95, every incumbent who’d voted against the ban had held their ground, and every newly elected member who ran saying they’d repeal it had kept that promise, winning a vote to repeal it would have been easy.

    The assertion that Newt couldn’t have won that vote is simply an admission that some of the votes against the ban came from members who would vote for it if their votes had been needed, and that many of the new members, elected with campaign promises to repeal it, would have broken those promises.

    Sure, Clinton likely would have vetoed the repeal. So what? Like Congress doesn’t pass laws unless they know they’ll be signed?

    The repeal vote, even with poison pill amendments, was deliberately scheduled after the Republican primaries, so that members who’d run promising to vote for repeal and then broke that promise could not be retaliated against at the polls.

    No, I’m going to stick by my position: Newt had no high minded motive for delaying the vote, he simply wanted to preserve the seats of Republicans who’d been elected lying about being pro-gun.

    He’s not getting my vote.

    Brett Bellmore (6652c2)

  166. I would say we’re seriously ‘fracked’ by people too dense to figure out the facts, then again that’s how we got Obama.

    Comment by narciso

    No, narciso… in that instance, we were truly fracked, and then they fracked us sideways for good measure.

    ColonelHaiku (09a0f9)

  167. 165. Romney has been mouthing ‘moderate’ sentiments of late like China’s currency manipulation–like Conservatives don’t know Bernanke has initiated currency debasement.

    The guy is fundamentally dishonest, as Matt Welch argued, what interest have we in replacing a congenital liar with a serial liar?

    If the GOP is truly bankrupt I, and millions of others will vote a third option, including a write in.

    Upwards of 20% of the electorate will not decide until the final weeks what they will do and I look for a comparatively poor turn out, the prime ingredient of a ‘unexpected’ result.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  168. People are free to be stupid and – if they choose that option – they’ll deserve exactly what they’ll get, which is another 4 years of the ObamaNation.

    ColonelHaiku (09a0f9)

  169. I want Ronald Reagan again. Sigh. I feel like such a cliche!

    The current group does make me rethink the idea of a tripartite presidency. Romney, Gingrich & Cain, with Romney as the front man.

    Kevin M (563f77)

  170. If the GOP is truly bankrupt I, and millions of others will vote a third option, including a write in.

    This happened in 1992, when Bush senior was spending money like a liberal (or so it seemed). Many fiscal conservatives split off and voted for Ross Perot, who got 19% of the vote.

    Pretty much the first wave of the modern Tea Party.

    The result? Bill Clinton became President with 43% of the vote. The moral? Anyone at all of those 8 Republicans (even Huntsman) is a better choice that Barack Obama.

    Kevin M (563f77)

  171. Comment by Kevin M — 11/12/2011 @ 11:53 pm

    Me, it depends. Newt cheated on his wife in 1980, and then on her replacement in the late 90′s. Not good, but this gets weighed against other things. If it came out tomorrow that he was currently cheating on wife #3, that would be another matter entirely, and his candidacy would end.

    This time he converted to Catholicism, which doesn’t allow divorce. Besides, he is now 68 years old and would be just about Ronald Reagan’s age, if inaugurated January 2013..

    The President has admitted that, back in the 80′s, he smoked marijuana and perhaps used other drugs. That was then, this is now, and I don’t hold that against him. I do hold quite a few other things he is doing today against him, but not that.

    And again, if it came out tomorrow that Obama was smoking pot in the White House, I would hope that his own supporters would have issues with that, too.

    Hmmm … would explain a lot, actually.

    It’s been reported that now he has actually finally stopped smoking.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/01/us/politics/obama-tobacco-free-and-fit-doctor-finds.html?_r=1&scp=1&sq=obama%20smoking&st=cse

    Tobacco-free does not mean, of course, that he does not take nicotine sans tobacco.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electronic_cigarette

    If that’s what he is doing he won’t advertise it because it still could come in for criticism. And in reality, a lot of the bad effects of cigarettes remain. FDR did not die from lung disease, but he almost certainly died from smoking.

    Sammy Finkelman (3a0ae4)

  172. “…Bernanke has initiated currency debasement…”

    Actually, gary, he’s just continued the programs of his predecessor (Mr. Andrea Mitchell), and put them on steroids.

    AD-RtR/OS! (ce0593)

  173. 176- Oops, should have directed that to Kevin M, as gary was just quoting him.
    Sorry, gary.

    AD-RtR/OS! (ce0593)

  174. 177- Or was he, I’m too easily confused this AM.

    AD-RtR/OS! (ce0593)

  175. I want Ronald Reagan again. Sigh. I feel like such a cliche!

    “Silent” Cal would be good;
    James Madison would be even better!

    AD-RtR/OS! (ce0593)

  176. 172. 1992 and 2012, apples and oranges. In my conservative community we set a turnout record in the mid-seventy percentiles.

    Today we will have jumped the debt 50% in four years. The global financial system will have melted all over the containment floor with the Federal government downgraded another tick or two to say nothing of states and municipalities. Tax revenues will have collapsed further.

    Government is comprehensively broken and counterproductive. The result of electing more Republicans has been to engender their remaining in place, nothing more.

    It is past time for plan B.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  177. You have all been fracked. Anita never posted about Newt last week. Will the real Anita Busch please stand up?

    Anita Busch (a025dd)

  178. Well, frack me to tears!

    ColonelHaiku (09a0f9)

  179. I should note, that would be the liquid form of tears.

    ColonelHaiku (09a0f9)

  180. Frack off.

    DohBiden (ef98f0)

  181. A question for those in the Eastern Time Zone:

    On tonight’s 60-Minutes, in the “talent” intro’s, did Scott Pelley say:

    I’m Scott Pelley, and I had my ass handed to me by Newt Gingrich!

    Just asking?

    AD-RtR/OS! (ce0593)

  182. Right on the running board of the zeitgeist Politico asks “Is Conservative opposition to Romney Eroding” as CNN has Mitty at 24%, Newt 22%, Herm and Rick around a dozen.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  183. PPP has Newt 28%, Cain 22%, Romamba 15%, Ricky 6%.

    Average these two polls and we have a break out, Conservatives top 50% with Elites at 20%.

    Could it be over?

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  184. IA Cain 20%, Newt 19%, Mitt 14%, Michele and Ramses II, 10%, Rick 5%.

    Put Rove on suicide watch.

    gary gulrud (d88477)


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