Newt to launch exploratory presidential committee this week

posted at 12:15 pm on March 1, 2011 by Ed Morrissey

Fun 2012 campaign fact — the only two Republicans semi-officially thinking about running are both from Georgia:

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich will launch a presidential ‘exploratory’ campaign this week, becoming the first big-name GOP candidate to make a formal step towards the White House.

The other candidate officially non-officially running is Herman Cain, who announced his exploratory committee launch before CPAC.  Cain has made a big splash thus far, both at CPAC and in Wisconsin, where he made an appearance at the Tea Party counterprotests in Madison to support Scott Walker. None of the other presumed Republican challengers joined Cain in that venue, including Newt, but Gingrich does have some trips scheduled soon that will impact the primaries, as ABC reported earlier:

ABC News has learned that Newt Gingrich will make the leap this week. Confidants close to the former House speaker say he will announce his intention to form a presidential exploratory committee before the end of the week.

Gingrich spokesman Rick Tyler would only say that the former speaker will make an announcement by the end of the week on forming a presidential exploratory committee. But friends of Gingrich say he has already made up his mind. Gingrich’s travel schedule is already looking like that of a presidential candidate. He will be in Iowa on Mar. 7 and ABC News has learned he will in New Hampshire Mar. 17.

Gingrich seems serious about running this time.  He played footsie with the notion throughout 2007 but ultimately decided against jumping into the scrum, holding off the final decision until late in the year.  He took a lot of criticism for his hard-to-get routine at the time.  Instead of toying with supporters this time, Gingrich seems anxious to get out in front early.

Of course, this cycle isn’t 2007, either.  Talk of a primary challenge to Obama seems to have quieted of late, which means that the GOP won’t have to compete for attention.  Instead of rushing to get into debates, most of the presumptive candidates have downplayed their official and non-official campaigns.  For some whose national profiles need burnishing, like Tim Pawlenty and Mitch Daniels, the effort is more public, but for those with more exposure like Mike Huckabee and Mitt Romney, the need for speed is nothing like the last presidential campaign.  At this rate, the two announced GOP presidential debates in the spring may only include the two Georgia natives, as everyone else may be waiting for mid-summer to test out the waters a little more quietly.


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Neutered/Dede 2012
Your new and improved GOP!!

james23 on March 1, 2011 at 1:12 PM

I like Newt. This will make the debates fun to watch. He actually knows stuff.

faraway on March 1, 2011 at 1:03 PM

Agree. I’m glad he is throwing his hat in the ring. People are looking for good, solid, intelligent answers to the problems we are experiencing. He will bring that element to the debates which will only bolster the Republicans.

sherry on March 1, 2011 at 1:14 PM

Just got an email from Town Hall about their straw poll. Here is their headline: Palin Wins February Straw Poll; Paul in 2nd.

Mirimichi on March 1, 2011 at 1:15 PM

sherry on March 1, 2011 at 1:14 PM

I agree Newt will be excellent at debates..The debates are overrated IMHO!..I would like to see candidates do tough interviews and take on the hard questions..:)

PS..Nice post!..:)

Dire Straits on March 1, 2011 at 1:19 PM

Exactly which demographic is Newt gonna woo to his side? Indies? Women?

Limerick on March 1, 2011 at 1:24 PM

Gawd. Another has-been. Newt, you have about zero credibility, from character issues to RINO endorsements. Better to stay at your current job. We need fresh blood, not another retread. I’d rather have Mittens than this clown…and THAT’S saying something.

search4truth on March 1, 2011 at 1:27 PM

Exactly which demographic is Newt gonna woo to his side? Indies? Women?

Limerick on March 1, 2011 at 1:24 PM

Dc insiders

unseen on March 1, 2011 at 1:27 PM

but Gingrich does have some trips scheduled soon that will impact the primaries

Perhaps a speech in Berlin.

BDavis on March 1, 2011 at 1:27 PM

Newt is a very intelligent man. But intelligence alone doesn’t make for wise leadership. You must temper that with a sound moral foundation so that you are not led to do things that you can rationalize yourself into. I don’t see that foundation in Newt. I think he sees himself as the smartest guy in the room and would too easily dismiss those who offer wise counsel.

SKYFOX on March 1, 2011 at 1:28 PM

Newt, just go away. Your day in the sun has come and gone, and you should be doing the second part as a favor to us, be GONE!

Webrider on March 1, 2011 at 1:36 PM

Newt is a bright man who has rendered considerable service to our country.

His time, however, has passed. His lack of rectitude in his personal life, and his coziness with too many Democrats, make him one of the worst candidates the Republicans could field — only Romney or Huckabee would be worse!

CatoRenasci on March 1, 2011 at 1:36 PM

Just got an email from Town Hall about their straw poll. Here is their headline: Palin Wins February Straw Poll; Paul in 2nd.

Mirimichi on March 1, 2011 at 1:15 PM

I’m sure that Allah is working on a post right this moment. It is after all the townhall/hotair.com February straw poll.
Newt is fourth, w/11% – just to keep this post somewhat on topic
No way Paul has that much support (15.5%), maybe the results aren’t as indicative as I would have thought.

rslancer14 on March 1, 2011 at 1:40 PM

Dire Straits on March 1, 2011 at 1:19 PM

Yes, the debates are overrated but because Politics seems to be an ongoing live version of a blockbuster reality show, the debate forum will provide viewers the opportunity to know who to kick off the island :)

I do love a good tough interview and all candidates need to participate. We do have a liberal media but that can work to the strong candidate’s advantage this time.

Times like this, I really miss Tim Russert. He was the best.

sherry on March 1, 2011 at 1:48 PM

I wouldn’t rule out Gingrich as a VP selection by Palin. He’s an insider and a prodigious debater. His attacks on the Left can be withering. Palin could take the high ground.

Gingrich is not presidential material. He’s too obviously full of himself and lacks empathy or the appearance of it. He’s cold.

rrpjr on March 1, 2011 at 1:52 PM

Nominate Newt? RIP GOP. I sat out the last one because there was no way I was going to vote for McCain; and now you think I’ll come back and vote for one of the ultimate DC insiders?

Over50 on March 1, 2011 at 1:55 PM

Times like this, I really miss Tim Russert. He was the best.

sherry on March 1, 2011 at 1:48 PM

Russert was good..:)

Dire Straits on March 1, 2011 at 1:58 PM

Let him run if he wants too.

However, he won’t have my vote in the primary, unless things change very drastically in coming months.

He would be good for the debates, though, to “thin the herd” and keep the best candidates on the top of their game. Competition is good!

cs89 on March 1, 2011 at 1:59 PM

Way too much dirty laundry, but would be entertaining in debates.

slickwillie2001 on March 1, 2011 at 2:05 PM

How where do we get in touch with newt and tell him.
.
Forgetabboutit!

Col.John Wm. Reed on March 1, 2011 at 2:06 PM

I wouldn’t rule out Gingrich as a VP selection by Palin. He’s an insider and a prodigious debater. His attacks on the Left can be withering. Palin could take the high ground.

Sarah would never pick Newt for VP. Mostly because she has real moral values, Newt doesn’t.

JimK on March 1, 2011 at 2:11 PM

Newt has far surpassed his sell-by date. I still admire him as a thinker but there is more than a little John Edwards in him. There is no scenario in which he is electable and there shouldn’t be.

Mason on March 1, 2011 at 2:23 PM

Epic Fail

moochy on March 1, 2011 at 2:32 PM

JimK on March 1, 2011 at 2:11 PM

I think you’re right.

rrpjr on March 1, 2011 at 2:49 PM

I couldn’t care less about his personal life — I just want someone competent to run the country. But I think it will get framed as a ‘likeability’ issue vis a vis Obama, and we all know who would win that. I also don’t think most women are as hardheaded as me, especially as most conservative women tend to be values voters.

Fortunata on March 1, 2011 at 3:08 PM

I admire Newt and I love reading his books BUT it is time for the old-timers (and I am one) to step aside and let the “young guns” take over. President Paul Ryan? Rick Perry?

jones4az on March 1, 2011 at 4:03 PM

Newt’s platform: Vote for me. I’m the only candidate who is more than ready and willing to disappoint you.

Fred 2 on March 1, 2011 at 4:16 PM

Hell no! Gingrich is morally bankrupt. If he can’t be truthful with his supposed loved ones then how can he be truthful with constituents?

And Cain? Could he pay some dues first? He has never held political office. He has no foreign policy experience either.

I hate to say it, but our Governor Hickenlooper is doing things the right way. He was a geologist, then a restaurant owner. Mayor for 8 years and now Governor. Four or 8 years from now he’ll be perfectly positioned to run for the presidency.

Where are the GOP candidates with a similar track record?

Common Sense on March 1, 2011 at 4:16 PM

Newt to launch exploratory presidential committee this week

Oh, joy.

Dr. ZhivBlago on March 1, 2011 at 4:22 PM

Newt is like Nixon, he was smart and was a RINO pretending to be a conservative, except even Nixon had more personality than Newt and was loyal to his wife.

We need someone who can talk social issues and not be laughed out of the room by the Conservative Christians, their vote is important and they haven’t declared a truce on the social issues.

Palin can get their support.

Done That on March 1, 2011 at 4:25 PM

Nowt for Newt!

Besides, I don’t want him to get distracted from writing more alternate-history novels: he’s a lot better at that than at politics.

PersonFromPorlock on March 1, 2011 at 4:57 PM

Newt to launch exploratory presidential committee this week

Newt is like the aging band that doesn’t quite know when to quit.

Newt’s Reunion Tour coming soon to a venue near you.

rukiddingme on March 1, 2011 at 5:01 PM

Newt’s Fund Raiser — American Solutions for Winning the Future

Says it all for me.

Caststeel on March 1, 2011 at 5:14 PM

*groan*

powerpro on March 1, 2011 at 5:15 PM

On the negative side:
A bit of a sleazy past
Some misteps and wrong people supported
At one point believed in AGW (maybe still does)
Member of the Republican old guard

On the positive side:
Great grasp of major conservative ideals
Saved the nation from Clinton
Very good speeches (I have listened to some on my IPod)
Good experience as an accomplisher in government.

With some reservations, I find him better than most (but not all) contenders, and would happily vote for him.

Johnny 100 Pesos on March 1, 2011 at 6:17 PM

He won’t make it past Super Tuesday.

Conservative Samizdat on March 1, 2011 at 6:28 PM

Where do I go to vote … against him?

moochy on March 1, 2011 at 6:45 PM

Sorry folks I am stressed out tonight ,

my HA brethren and sistren…please feel free to make up your own “You’re a mean one Mr. Gingrich” (Grinch) parody..

if you like, tomorrow I will grade them! ok ? :)

cableguy615 on March 1, 2011 at 7:02 PM

Stay on that couch Newt.

Knucklehead on March 1, 2011 at 12:22 PM

My message to Newt, sung to Sousa’s Stars and Stripes Forever:

No No, No no no, No no no,

No no no, No no no, No no no… No.

Fallon on March 1, 2011 at 7:04 PM

Newt – Your time as passed.

lonestar1 on March 1, 2011 at 8:14 PM

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

I love Newt to death, but he’s not presidential material. He’s a loose cannon, who thinks out loud, and will make constant gaffes that the lefty press will pounce on.

New is a big idea guy, a great behind the scenes organizer, whip, and grey eminence. Pushing him to the front of the stage would be disastrous. Newt should write the platform, not be the candidate.

Bartrams Garden on March 1, 2011 at 10:24 PM

From Politico:

Newt Gingrich has flip-flopped on forming a presidential exploratory committee this Thursday.

technopeasant on March 2, 2011 at 12:48 AM

How where do we get in touch with newt and tell him.
.
Forgetabboutit!

Col.John Wm. Reed on March 1, 2011 at 2:06 PM

Not sure, but I whole-heartedly agree.

Newt = UGH!

Badger State Dave on March 2, 2011 at 3:23 AM

How where do we get in touch with newt and tell him.
.
Forgetabboutit!

Col.John Wm. Reed on March 1, 2011 at 2:06 PM

Not sure, but I whole-heartedly agree.

Newt = UGH!

Badger State Dave on March 2, 2011 at 3:23 AM

Why to the “old and busted” always think they’re the “new hotness”?

Browncoatone on March 2, 2011 at 3:42 AM

Newt always knows what he is talking about and I am will to listen, but he has absolutely no chance of winning the nomination or the presidency.

SC.Charlie on March 2, 2011 at 9:27 AM

Comment pages: 1 2