Gingrich: Why yes, I’d team up with Santorum to take down Romney

posted at 11:10 am on January 4, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

Most people would agree that Rick Santorum and Mitt Romney scored political-narrative and strategic wins in the final results of the Iowa caucuses last night.  Santorum’s stirring come-from-behind performance in the last two weeks and his almost-victory speech late last night gives him the edge as the night’s biggest winner, while Romney’s actual win and the dimunition of his most-organized competitors makes it a long-stretch win for him as well.  After that, there are mostly degrees of losing, but who ended up as the night’s biggest loser?  Rick Perry spent a ton of money in Iowa and ended up barely in double digits in a fifth-place finish, but Perry’s standing at least improved in the final weeks, as did his organization.  Michele Bachmann’s standing among voters crashed months ago, and she ended up at about where polling showed her all along, at the bottom of the field that actually and seriously competed for votes in Iowa.

The biggest loser?  Major Garrett makes a compelling case for Newt Gingrich at National Journal this morning:

Gingrich never committed the kind of nationally televised blunder that Perry did – failing to remember the three government agencies he would close if he became president. But make no mistake. Gingrich did much worse than Perry. And that’s saying a lot.

Yes, Perry led in September and blew it. Gingrich led in December and blew it. That’s almost impossible. At the heart of Gingrich’s downfall lay a messy mix of his worst traits – hubris, disorganization and disdain for his opponents. …

“I don’t have to go around and point out the inconsistencies of people who aren’t going to be the nominee,” Gingrich said. “I’m going to be the nominee. It’s very hard not to look at the recent polls and think the odds are very high I’m going to be the nominee.”

Right.

Viewed in retrospect, that bit of arrogance has to be disconcerting for Gingrich supporters. What Gingrich said next, though, stands as an act of staggering political malpractice that may lead the remaining Gingrich backers in New Hampshire and South Carolina to re-evaluate everything.

“I don’t object if people want to attack me,” Gingrich told ABC’s Jake Tapper. “That’s their right. All I’m suggesting is, it’s not going to be very effective. People are going to get sick of it very fast. I will focus on being substantive. And I will focus on Barack Obama.”

Republicans did attack Gingrich. Iowa voters did not get sick of it. And Gingrich’s poll numbers were cut in half in less than a month. Yes, negative ads took their toll in Iowa (more on this in a minute). But Gingrich’s national numbers fell in the same period of time and at roughly the same rate. Viewed more closely, Gingrich looked less and less appealing and he did nothing to sharpen his message, contrast his record against his opponents or explain why he would be the best nominee.

Recall that Gingrich has been complaining for the last few days that he has been “Romney-boated,” a weird reference to the Swift Boat veterans in 2004 that objected to the depiction of John Kerry as a war hero.  Romney’s super-PAC ran the negative ads that Gingrich practically dared them to run, and they turned out — as Garrett notes — to have been pretty effective.  Putting aside the specific complaints that Gingrich made against Romney, what did he expect would happen if he won the nomination?  Did he think that Obama would not make these same arguments, and more like them, in a general election campaign?  This is why negative campaigning in primaries matter, and why showboating with pledges of nothing but niceness is a dangerous conceit for primary candidates.

Certainly Obama would have exploited the one attack that seems to have had the most impact: his work with Freddie Mac.  Gingrich insists that Freddie Mac paid him $1.6 million for just consulting on historic and strategic looks at lending policy, and that he did no lobbying.  I’m sure that’s true in the technical, legal sense, as Gingrich was surely smart enough to know how that would look in a later presidential campaign even without the collapse in 2008.  But no one thinks that Freddie Mac would hire a former Speaker of the House merely for his opinions on historical lending patterns.  They hired him to give themselves a little more gold-plated heft in pushing for federal policies that benefited their organization.  There’s nothing illegal about that, but it’s not a hands-off relationship no matter how much Gingrich argues to the contrary, and Obama would have a field day with that in a general election.

Garrett then points out that the disappointing fourth-place finish in Iowa will depress Gingrich’s fundraising and organizing efforts, leaving him to pursue the Obama strategy against Romney:

That means Gingrich must earn media attention he cannot buy. The only way to earn it is to roast Romney as a phony conservative and a poll-driven flip-flopper.

The great risk for Gingrich here is that these lines of attack are already part of the Obama re-election playbook and may do nothing more than soften Romney up if, as many expect and the contours of the race suggest, he becomes the GOP nominee.

Actually, it might toughen Romney up rather than soften him up.  Romney’s smart enough to know what the Obama playbook will be, and if Gingrich gives him a preseason scrimmage on that field, Romney can tune up his game.  That’s what primaries do — they produce better, more prepared candidates.  Romney’s real worry will be Santorum running to his right, who could benefit if all the other Not-Romneys got out of the race.  But Santorum wouldn’t be in this position at all if Gingrich had kept a lead in December and showed that he could close the deal from the front.

And speaking of which, Gingrich himself seems to recognize this in his conversation with Laura Ingraham this morning (via The Right Scoop):

Ingraham: Can you see a scenario under which the two of you [Santorum and Gingrich] would align together to try to defeat the establishment candidate, Mitt Romney?

Gingrich: Absolutely. Of course. I mean Rick and I have a 20-year friendship, we are both rebels, we both came into this business as reformers, we both dislike deeply the degree to which the establishment sells out the American people. We both think Washington has to be changed in very fundamental ways, and we have lots of things that fit together. And the thing that’s interesting is if you take the votes, you add to that Perry and Bachmann, you begin to see the size of the conservative vote compared to Romney…if you take, you know, Santorum and Perry and Bachmann and Gingrich you get some sense of what a small minority Romney really represents.

That’s true if the combined Perry-Bachmann vote in Iowa went to Santorum.  It’s less true if it went to Gingrich alone — and as I’ve already mentioned, it’s less true in South Carolina for Santorum alone and even less true in New Hampshire in either or both scenarios.  Some of those voters might be inclined to go to Romney, however.  We won’t know until the field narrows.  But shouldn’t Gingrich be making the case for himself alone at this point if he was confident of his standing in the race, rather than endorsing tag-team efforts against one other opponent?  Gingrich seems to acknowledge that Romney has become the clear front-runner in a crowded field.


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I think that Romney staked his attacks on the assumption that Newt didn’t have the money to fight back. He had better hope that he doesn’t.

I’m still not getting Christie, Coulter and Haley endorsing Romney with Santorum, Gingrich, Perry and Bachmann in the race. Does anyone get that?

cajunpatriot on January 4, 2012 at 2:15 PM

Rush spent a lot of time talking about this today. He likens Gingrich’s plans to go after Romney in a NASCAR analogy. He said this will be like Newt deliberately crashing Romney’s car and taking it out during a race. Rush said it is now personal with Newt since 40+% of the ads were personal negative attacks in Iowa.

Personally, I would like to see Perry/Santorum/Newt all go after Romney this week.

Newt is staying in so he can use the debates to beat Romney up. Plus it doesn’t cost anything other than transportation and housing/meals to be in the debates. Cheap way to get in front of voters.

karenhasfreedom on January 4, 2012 at 2:15 PM

A history lesson:

Negative campaigning in America was sired by two lifelong friends, John Adams and Thomas Jefferson. Back in 1776, the dynamic duo combined powers to help claim America’s independence, and they had nothing but love and respect for one another. But by 1800, party politics had so distanced the pair that, for the first and last time in U.S. history, a president found himself running against his vice president.

Things got ugly fast. Jefferson’s camp accused President Adams of having a “hideous hermaphroditical character, which has neither the force and firmness of a man, nor the gentleness and sensibility of a woman.”

In return, Adams’ men called Vice President Jefferson “a mean-spirited, low-lived fellow, the son of a half-breed Indian squaw, sired by a Virginia mulatto father.”

As the slurs piled on, Adams was labeled a fool, a hypocrite, a criminal, and a tyrant, while Jefferson was branded a weakling, an atheist, a libertine, and a coward.

Via CNN’s “Founding Fathers’ dirty campaign”. Can’t link or comment will be wiped out…

Buy Danish on January 4, 2012 at 2:16 PM

Personally, I would like to see Perry/Santorum/Newt all go after Romney this week.
karenhasfreedom on January 4, 2012 at 2:15 PM

Looking for a 3 car pileup at NASCAR?

Buy Danish on January 4, 2012 at 2:17 PM

Now Newt is fighting back, and the Romney establishment folk are having little hissy fits. If Newt is as inconsequential as you keep telling us, why are you whining so much?

IndeCon on January 4, 2012 at 2:02 PM

we??? he is the whiner-in-chief, whining about the ‘negative ads’ day in and day out…like what the heck do you expect when you run for office? bed of roses…as for Romney. don’t think he has anything to worry about, Gingrich’s campaign is broke anyways, shows what great ‘managerial’ skills he has :-)…at least The One was a brilliant campaign manager, obviously…

jimver on January 4, 2012 at 2:19 PM

On debate night, in response to Newt, I’m hoping Mitt says something about Newt going on a cruise with Calista instead of working to organize his campaign and raise money. That would be a totally fair zinger, and irrefutable on the facts. Mitt’s been working his butt off since 2008, setting the groundwork up to defeat Barack Obama. Newt was a Johnny-Come-Lately, spent the first part of his campaign hawking books and his website, and now he’s blubbering because he wasn’t prepared to fight back.

Buy Danish on January 4, 2012 at 2:28 PM

Cindy Munford on January 4, 2012 at 2:14 PM

Given the whoopdy-do over the Iowa Caucus as if the ultimate, direct revelation from God/Wall-Street (in lucre we trust), I reiterate my initial point regarding the Republican Primary process: one single national primary election day. There is no logical reason for Iowa or any other state to determine national election results and global inference from the “leader of the free world”. There is also no sane reason for “campaigning” to be required for OVER A YEAR (another example of never-ending-warfare, domestic fashion). Also, given the internet, for national campaigns requiring squandering heinous fortunes of billions/trillions US Dollars is what’s out-moded, not constructionist Constitutional Governance. It isn’t as if such “investment” buying politicians accomplishes the REAL rebuilding of our nation’s infrastructure; rather the perpetual postponement as the corrupt keep mounting debt to ruin middle class taxpayers. And anyone who believes that “promise them anything, just get their votes” Mitt Romney who told unemployed American blue collar workers to “kiss manufacturing jobs good-bye because they’re NEVER coming back to America” is going to alleviate the economic burdens on every voter earning no more than $250K (how many mechanics, journeymen and artisans earn $250K?!), there’s a sucker born every minute. Btw, any blue collar worker with the misfortune of living in Utah knows better than to expect any promise from the SLC hierarchy who birthed the immortal Romney candidacy to result in a decent wage or working conditions. Consider the early 20th Century Romney mining interests, for instance; as if miners were or ARE treated decently in Utah where federal safety regulations exist “virtually” on paper but most certainly not in effect. In 2008, Romney kept promising “good jobs” without specifying what those would be. In 2012, he admits that the unemployed American can apply for retail work at Staples, restocking shelves with products from China, Romney’s “good job” offer to the American manufacturing highly skilled labor force.

maverick muse on January 4, 2012 at 2:41 PM

And anyone who believes that “promise them anything, just get their votes” Mitt Romney who told unemployed American blue collar workers to “kiss manufacturing jobs good-bye because they’re NEVER coming back to America
maverick muse on January 4, 2012 at 2:41 PM

That is absolutely FALSE!! John McCain, not Romney made that statement.

Oh, and the rest of your statement is just conspiracy-theories run amok, but not surprising coming from you.

Buy Danish on January 4, 2012 at 2:55 PM

at least Romney’s wife is real, a mother of 5 wonderful boys…actually that robotic Calista is the perfect poster child for the Stepford wife :-)…

jimver on January 4, 2012 at 2:14 PM

Too Bad her husband is Stepford Mitt

workingclass artist on January 4, 2012 at 3:03 PM

Romney would be destroyed in the general.

Romney’s track record is nothing to run on.

All the media has to do is provide the details of his horrible economic track record in Massachusetts (tax & fee increases, 47th in the nation in job creation), then report provocative stories on the Mormon “cult” with racism, polygamy and Warren Jeffs all being mentioned.

The evangelical base will not support Romney in the numbers needed to win the general.

cyclo on January 4, 2012 at 3:05 PM

Obama ad: “Why vote for Romney when even 75% of his own party didn’t want him? All I need is 4 more years to clean up this Bush Mess folks…right Bill?”

workingclass artist on January 4, 2012 at 3:11 PM

Given this juvenile response by Gingrich, I want the $100 I donated to him a few months ago back. At the time, I did it because (a) unlike the rest, he wasn’t dumping on other Republicans, and (b) I believed him when he said he’d changed over time. Turns out, both were short-lived, and he’s reverted back to the jackass that screwed up the Republicans hold on Congress in the 90s.

In fact, I want my $100, with interest and penalties.

Newt forgets: he’s running as a Republican. This isn’t a show created for Newt. It’s Newt within the party. If he wants to act like a six year old who didn’t get the toy he wanted for Christmas, go find another place to play. Grownups would do what candidates have done, even when they hate each other: congratulate the other on a hard fought race, and try harder the next time.

What a jerk.

FiveG on January 4, 2012 at 3:12 PM

I see what Maverick Muse did – she confused two quotes, one from Romney, one from McCain.

In Michigan during primary season, McCain said manufacturing jobs weren’t coming back. Mitt said that if we bailed out the auto industry instead of letting them go through the bankruptcy process we could “kiss those jobs goodbye”:

Romney attacked then opponent John McCain for saying that manufacturing jobs lost in Michigan weren’t coming back.

“The last thing you need in a state like Michigan is more pessimism,” he said. “And if he’s saying those automotive jobs are not coming back, well, how about the jobs that are still here? How about the hundreds of thousands of people who still work in the automotive sector? Are they all going to lose their jobs, too? Or are we going to say it’s simply unacceptable to us to have a major sector of the economy – transportation – turned over to people around the world?” he addeThat same year, after he had lost the nomination to McCain, Romney was advocating against a bailout for the auto industry. In a New York Times editorial “Let Detroit Go Bankrupt,” Romney said if the bailout went through, “you can kiss the American automobile industry goodbye.”

In the piece, he pushed for a managed bankruptcy for the auto industry as “the only path to the fundamental restructuring the industry needs.”

Buy Danish on January 4, 2012 at 3:14 PM

Oops, link.

Buy Danish on January 4, 2012 at 3:16 PM

As governor of Massachusetts, Mitt Romney raised state government fees and taxes by three quarters of a billion dollars a year. During his four year tenure, Romney nickeled and dimed Massachusetts families and individuals with over a hundred fee increases, on everything from getting married (he upped the price for a marriage license), to buying a new home (he increased charges for Registry of Deeds paperwork), to owning a gun legally (he tripled the fee for a Firearms ID Card). He also proposed and obtained hundreds of millions of dollars in new tax revenues from business, with tax changes he dubbed loophole closings but critics said were really just tax increases. The fee hikes and tax revenue increases described here were all proposed by Romney himself, as elements of various budgets, revenue raiser packages, or other measures or policy proposals originating in Romney’s office.

‎$432 million in fee hikes:

As governor, Romney increased state fees on residents on businesses by $432 million annually. These fee hikes were all proposed by Romney; they were not items originated by the Legislature. (Note that Romney originally sought an even higher amount, but the Legislature reduced or rejected some of his demands for higher fees.)

‎$309 million in higher taxes:

As governor, Romney increased various taxes on businesses by $309 million annually, via three “corporate loophole” closing packages, one each in 2003, 2004 and 2005. (Note that Romney originally proposed an even higher amount of increased taxes on business but reduced or dropped some proposals due to opposition from business and/or lack of Legislative support.)

In addition to the three quarters of a billion dollars in higher fees and state taxes Romney imposed as governor, his tenure also saw massive increases in property taxes in Massachusetts—in significant part due to Mitt Romney. In fact, the non-partisan and highly respected FactCheck.org says Romney “shifted some of the tax burden to the local level…”

Massachusetts homeowners paid a steep price for Romney’s shell game. The average single-family property tax bill statewide rose from $3,015 in fiscal 2002 to $3,799 in 2006, a 26 percent increase, or $784 a year. During the same period, the residential property tax levy (that is, the total amount collected) increased by $1.8 billion statewide, or a staggering 35 percent from fiscal 2002 to 2006.5.

Romney’s record of fee hikes and taxes became an issue in the 2006 governor’s race, with the Boston Globe reporting that “Fees and taxes have increased more than $700 million a year under Governor Mitt Romney and Lieutenant Governor Kerry Healey, a leading budget specialist said.” The analysis, by The Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, pegged Romney’s fee hikes and tax revenue increases at $740 million to $750 million a year.

http://romneyfacts.com/issue_tax.php

cyclo on January 4, 2012 at 3:16 PM

Romney’s SuperPac will have to do the dirty work.

rubberneck on January 4, 2012 at 11:37 AM

Like wipe his Nasty A$$ as well?
Maybe they can get his 25% supporters as well….
Good luck with that…..

coach1228 on January 4, 2012 at 3:19 PM

jimver, Callista is Creepy Barbie.

Philly on January 4, 2012 at 3:23 PM

NEWS FLASH: MITT ROMNEY MAKES APPOINTMENT FOR ANNAL EXAM!!

Developing….

AP: 25% Mitt Romeny is schedule to appear on National TV this Saturday Night in the GOP Debate. During this debate, Mitt will have an extensive ANNAL Exam to be conducted by Rich Santorum and Newt Gingrich exclusively.

I can hear the Mittbots screams now…..

coach1228 on January 4, 2012 at 3:27 PM

jimver, Callista is Creepy Barbie.

Philly on January 4, 2012 at 3:23 PM

Have you seen Ron Pauls wife…??

YIKES!!!!

coach1228 on January 4, 2012 at 3:30 PM

I can hear the Mittbots screams now…..
coach1228 on January 4, 2012 at 3:27 PM

Uh, sorry to disappoint you, but….no. It’s just not funny, dude. It’s like a 3rd grade joke.

P.S. Do try to learn to spell “Romney” while you’re at it. The staff at AP may not be the brightest bulbs on the planet but they’d at least spell a candidate’s name correctly.

Buy Danish on January 4, 2012 at 3:31 PM

Buy Danish on January 4, 2012 at 3:31 PM

Wasn’t suppose to be funny….D_ _ K breath.
Sorry…didnt’ hit spell check professor.
Now bend over and cough!!!

MITTENS…I like that name.

Say “hi” to John McCain for us….

coach1228 on January 4, 2012 at 3:36 PM

The negative ads (or gentle reminders of how useless he is) should be solely towards Obama.

kim roy on January 4, 2012 at 1:47 PM

Let me try this again. I think that negative ads, even against primary opponents is a good thing. That is provided they’re honest. The other side won’t play nice and if our guy can’t take it we should know about that before we’ve nominated him.

MJBrutus on January 4, 2012 at 1:53 PM

I disagree. The DNC can do their own homework. Only the deluded think that they won’t be Palinized and if they are that deluded, then they’ll be left by the side of the road soon enough. Let them spend their time and money getting intel. Why spend ours?

No, I think that they should be spending their time telling US why we should vote for them, not why we shouldn’t vote for the other guy.

kim roy on January 4, 2012 at 3:49 PM

Ah….a trip down memory lane…2008.

Ala John McCain….thank you .

MCROMNEY 2012….

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cU1LXBNxlDw

Liberal Romney:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cU1LXBNxlDw

One more for kicks….Obama vs McCain comparison:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jPGnJmbDq08&feature=related

Let’s chew on this endorsement for a while…

coach1228 on January 4, 2012 at 4:03 PM

Hey Newt, with your attitude, why don’t you just sit on the couch with Barack Obama and take down the Republican nominee. With Obama’s Billion Dollar war chest which apparently should appeal to you since you make such great historical fees from your K street office, you might get Obama to pay you for it.

Besides, the first and hardest attacks against Newt were from Ron Paul. It just shows that Newt is a sore jealous loser. Good Luck getting any money from me for one of your worthless future books.

mark cantu on January 4, 2012 at 4:21 PM

Besides, the first and hardest attacks against Newt were from Ron Paul. It just shows that Newt is a sore jealous loser. Good Luck getting any money from me for one of your worthless future books.

mark cantu on January 4, 2012 at 4:21 PM

Oddly enough, that fact about Ron Paul going after Newt first has been ignored by all the idiots who think Romney “deserves” to be attacked by the old, fat, ugly, white guy.

BettyRuth on January 4, 2012 at 4:29 PM

Newt Gingrich has a point: If Santorum, Perry, Bachmann and himself did not split the Non-Romney part of the traditional conservative vote, Romney would stand no chance. And that’s how it should be.

It would have been unfair to ask any of the candidates to drop out before the first votes were cast. However, the voters have now spoken, and among the four candidates he mentioned, one has emerged as the clear front runner. And even though I previously supported Gingrich, it clearly isn’t him.

If he were to live by his own words, and put the interest of the country before his own, Newt Gingrich would follow Michelle Bachmann’s lead, and stand down before the next primary, possibly endorsing Rick Santorum. To do this at a time when he still has quite considerable support of his own (and not when he has nothing left to lose) would make it an even more honorable service to his party and his country. More importantly, to do it at a time when there is still a chance of stopping the “inevitable” Mitt Romney, would earn him immense admiration by the conservative majority within the Republican party. We are fed up by the prospect of a candidate who fails to break 25%, and does not share our core values to represent us.

Captain Obvious on January 4, 2012 at 4:30 PM

On debate night, in response to Newt, I’m hoping Mitt says something about Newt going on a cruise with Calista instead of working to organize his campaign and raise money. That would be a totally fair zinger, and irrefutable on the facts. Mitt’s been working his butt off since 2008, setting the groundwork up to defeat Barack Obama. Newt was a Johnny-Come-Lately, spent the first part of his campaign hawking books and his website, and now he’s blubbering because he wasn’t prepared to fight back.

Buy Danish on January 4, 2012 at 2:28 PM

Now that is laughable. Every single time an issue came up where we had to rally the conservatives to defeat something in Washington, Romney was NOWHERE to be found. He has hidden under his desk for 3+ years.

karenhasfreedom on January 4, 2012 at 4:31 PM

Hey Newt, with your attitude, why don’t you just sit on the couch with Barack Obama and take down the Republican nominee. With Obama’s Billion Dollar war chest which apparently should appeal to you since you make such great historical fees from your K street office, you might get Obama to pay you for it.

Besides, the first and hardest attacks against Newt were from Ron Paul. It just shows that Newt is a sore jealous loser. Good Luck getting any money from me for one of your worthless future books.

mark cantu on January 4, 2012 at 4:21 PM

Who’s sounding like the loser here?

Let’s see….Paul and Romney attack Newt.

Newt and Santorum attack Romney and Paul.

Sounds like a good WWF tag team match to me…

Ding Ding….let’s get it on!!!

Stop your crying for cripe sake….

coach1228 on January 4, 2012 at 4:32 PM

Captain Obvious on January 4, 2012 at 4:30 PM

Your thoughts are on the right path…however.

1/50 state nomination process is just that…2%.

How do you expect a man to “quit” when he’s leading or in 2nd in the National Polls…and #1 in SC and FL polls? Does that sound sensible to you?
What does sound sensible is what Bachmann just did today and Perry should follow….

coach1228 on January 4, 2012 at 4:40 PM

Oddly enough, that fact about Ron Paul going after Newt first has been ignored by all the idiots who think Romney “deserves” to be attacked by the old, fat, ugly, white guy.

BettyRuth

I was about to post something about that. Its kinda like how in Iowa 87% voted not Gingrich.

Zaggs on January 4, 2012 at 4:41 PM

Now that is laughable. Every single time an issue came up where we had to rally the conservatives to defeat something in Washington, Romney was NOWHERE to be found. He has hidden under his desk for 3+ years.

karenhasfreedom

Damn him for taking a real job and being around his wife while she was going through cancer therapy. I mean he should have been out there doing things like being a “historical lending pattern” consultant to Freddie Mac.
BTW what was Gingrich doing besides endorsing Dede Scozzafava?

Zaggs on January 4, 2012 at 4:47 PM

coach1228 on January 4, 2012 at 4:40 PM

I don’t expect Newt Gingrich to quit at this point. Indeed, it would be quite extraordinary and unprecedented if he quit now, but I think it would send a really strong message: “I am willing to give up my personal aspiration of becoming president, in favor of a candidate whom I agree with, who has a better chance of winning, and who needs my strongest support.”

Of course, nobody can tell Newt to drop out at this point, but it would be the best thing for the country. His statement shows that he clearly understands the situation we are in. It’s through the kind of actions that nobody can be expected to do, that real leadership is shown.

Captain Obvious on January 4, 2012 at 4:53 PM

And while we are only through 1/50 states, it’s all about momentum – once Romney is seen as the “inevitable” candidate, we will soon be inundated by calls to rally around him, not to damage his chances (further?) in the general election. He may still only have a minority of Republicans behind him, but that does not mean that time isn’t running out to stop his coronation. Bachmann understood.

Captain Obvious on January 4, 2012 at 4:59 PM

Newt is moot.
Some folks will root
As he tries to be cute,
But the voters already gave him the boot.

MJBrutus on January 4, 2012 at 5:00 PM

The biggest loser?

Unquestionably Rick Perry.

His continued participation in this campaign only helps Mitt Romney.

Reggie1971 on January 4, 2012 at 5:13 PM

It’s been said before and it’s worth saying again. Mitt has no signature conservative achievement. Can anyone name anything? What is his championed conservative cause? He has never led on anything.

Mitt’s big achievement was Romneycare, the blueprint for Obamacare.

Newt’s big achievement was retaking the house after 40 years, balancing the federal budget for 4 years, and passing welfare reform.

Big difference.

Newt has led in a conservative direction and in real demonstrable ways. Romney is a snake oil salesman.

MikeRuss on January 4, 2012 at 5:13 PM

After enduring the worst smear campaign in Presidential primary history, I can forgive Newt a gaffe.

Reggie1971 on January 4, 2012 at 5:22 PM

No, he’s probably angry that we’re doing the DNC’s work for them rather than taking the fight to Obama.

kim roy on January 4, 2012 at 1:35 PM

I understand that you come from the “attack ads weaken our candidates and let Obama skate” school of thought, but I subscribe more to the “battle test our candidates before the final showdown” school of thought.

None of the negative ads running are ads that will be off limits for Axelrod. If anything, they will be sharper in their attacks and run them on an endless loop because they work and they have that kind of money. They are desperate because they can’t run on their record, which sucks.

If Mitt is going to point out Newt’s failures and misgivings, I welcome that because I want to see how he stands up. Likewise, I support anyone who wants to attack Romney because I want to see how he holds up. I want the strongest candidate in terms of his resiliency and ferociousness with how he deals with his opposition because we’re ultimately running against a cabal of Chicago dirt bags who only know one way to fight.

I happen to think our best guy is Romney, and the way he was able to destroy Gingrich in record time is heartening to me. He has the money and organization to win the message wars against Obama. Think that doesn’t matter or is overrated? Ask a leftist what they think about Citizens United or whether Obama will opt-in to public campaign financing this time.

The Count on January 4, 2012 at 5:25 PM

MikeRuss on January 4, 2012 at 5:13 PM

He saved the Olympics and he balanced the budget in Massa-freaking-chusettes to name just a couple.

MJBrutus on January 4, 2012 at 5:25 PM

Sounds like a good WWF tag team match to me…

coach1228 on January 4, 2012 at 4:32 PM

And Santorum knows something about the WWF

Santorum was working for the prestigious Pittsburgh law firm, Kirkpatrick and Lockhart, when he met Karen Garver in 1988. (While at the firm, Santorum represented the World Wrestling Federation, arguing that pro wrestling was not a sport and should be exempt from federal steroid regulations.)

I give him points for honesty!

BocaJuniors on January 4, 2012 at 5:39 PM

After enduring the worst smear campaign in Presidential primary history, I can forgive Newt a gaffe.

Reggie1971 on January 4, 2012 at 5:22 PM

In history?!?! Newt? Is that you? No Dresden or Pearl Harbor references?

BocaJuniors on January 4, 2012 at 5:39 PM

In history?!?! Newt? Is that you? No Dresden or Pearl Harbor references?

BocaJuniors on January 4, 2012 at 5:39 PM

No analogies necessary here. Just stating it as a plain truth. I’m not Newt either, just someone who has been a Republican for thirty years and has never been so disgusted with his own party.

Reggie1971 on January 4, 2012 at 5:48 PM

Reggie1971 on January 4, 2012 at 5:48 PM

He certainly had it tougher than these guys:

Things got ugly fast. Jefferson’s camp accused President Adams of having a “hideous hermaphroditical character, which has neither the force and firmness of a man, nor the gentleness and sensibility of a woman.”

In return, Adams’ men called Vice President Jefferson “a mean-spirited, low-lived fellow, the son of a half-breed Indian squaw, sired by a Virginia mulatto father.”

MJBrutus on January 4, 2012 at 5:52 PM

MJBrutus on January 4, 2012 at 5:52 PM

Congrats to Team Romney for win last night..:)

Dire Straits on January 4, 2012 at 5:58 PM

I don’t expect Newt Gingrich to quit at this point. Indeed, it would be quite extraordinary and unprecedented if he quit now, but I think it would send a really strong message: “I am willing to give up my personal aspiration of becoming president, in favor of a candidate whom I agree with, who has a better chance of winning, and who needs my strongest support.”

Of course, nobody can tell Newt to drop out at this point, but it would be the best thing for the country. His statement shows that he clearly understands the situation we are in. It’s through the kind of actions that nobody can be expected to do, that real leadership is shown.

Captain Obvious on January 4, 2012 at 4:53 PM

Thank you for convincing me even more Captain Obvious……that Newt Gingrich IS our best chance for saving this country. The beating he took the last 3 weeks and still surviving shows me even more that he is a survivor. Paul and Romney went after Newt…Kudos to them. Now…the favor WILL be returned and all I hear today is whinning. Romney and Paul fans act like thier candidates shouldn’t be touched. I say…Let the chips fall and land where they may….and may the best man win.
I will be voting Newt here in North Carolina….that will never change.

coach1228 on January 4, 2012 at 6:01 PM

Dire Straits on January 4, 2012 at 5:58 PM

Thank you :-) For the first time since Reagan I am looking forward to voting FOR a candidate and not just against some one worse. I am going to volunteer some of my time to see that he gets in to the WH.

MJBrutus on January 4, 2012 at 6:02 PM

MJBrutus on January 4, 2012 at 6:02 PM

Good deal..:)

Dire Straits on January 4, 2012 at 6:07 PM

Ed, I think you have got this backwards. Gingrich is attacking Romney from the right. He is pointing out Romney’s lack of Conservative bona fides.

Obama will attack Romney from a Liberal/Progressive perspective. Obama surrogates will discourage the Conservative base from voting by attacking Romney’s religion, his elitism, and his untrustworthyiness (flip-flops).

If the Conservative base is not fired up for whomever is the Republican nominee, Obama wins.

Sparky5253 on January 4, 2012 at 6:41 PM

Sparky5253 on January 4, 2012 at 6:41 PM

Any worries about Newt just don’t compute.
Without the cash he has no horn to toot.
Romney is smart enough to not give a hoot.

MJBrutus on January 4, 2012 at 7:02 PM

Rush spent a lot of time talking about this today. He likens Gingrich’s plans to go after Romney in a NASCAR analogy. He said this will be like Newt deliberately crashing Romney’s car and taking it out during a race. Rush said it is now personal with Newt since 40+% of the ads were personal negative attacks in Iowa.

Personally, I would like to see Perry/Santorum/Newt all go after Romney this week.

Newt is staying in so he can use the debates to beat Romney up. Plus it doesn’t cost anything other than transportation and housing/meals to be in the debates. Cheap way to get in front of voters.

karenhasfreedom on January 4, 2012 at 2:15 PM

Poor old Newt. He can’t do thing since he can’t get the loot. So he’ll go on the stage and shoot his own foot.

MJBrutus on January 4, 2012 at 7:22 PM

No, I think that they should be spending their time telling US why we should vote for them, not why we shouldn’t vote for the other guy.

kim roy on January 4, 2012 at 3:49 PM

Newt tried that he took the high road and attacked Obama almost exclusively, and like the rest as soon as he was a threat to the Mittens Bachman attacked and then the last two weeks in Iowa the commercial breaks were non-stop political only ads 45% of which were bashing newt.
Ron Paul had the guts to put his name behind his and lump all the candidates together.
Mitt hid behind his PAC like he did Bachman and his ads were directed almost exclusively at Newt and were largely false or fast and free with the facts.

Mitt called out the hounds and now he will get bit in the ass.

Don’t whine and cry Romney supporters if Newt decides to play this game your purty boy started it.

ConcealedKerry on January 4, 2012 at 8:30 PM

None of you understand. I’m not locked up in here with you. You’re locked up in here with me. — Watchmen NEWT!

ConcealedKerry on January 4, 2012 at 8:48 PM

Mitt has only won one election. When he ran in 1994 against Ted Kennedy, he was pounded. When he ran for governor in 2002, he was fresh off of his success at the Winter Olympics and his opponent was a hack named Shannon O’Brien (who?). It came down to the wire in that race, and he finally broke away after a debate in which he scored a gotcha response to a silly remark by O’Brien. In 2008, he couldn’t get past Huckabee, McCain et al.

Why do people say he’s electable?

catquilt on January 4, 2012 at 9:01 PM

John McCian and Mitt on Sannity.
McCain is really a senile old coot, he is NOT helping Romney at all.

ConcealedKerry on January 4, 2012 at 9:10 PM

Sheesh. Just saw Palin compliment Newt’s angry concession speech on Hannity. She had great things to say about Santorum, which was totally fine, but approving of Newt’s whining?

Buy Danish on January 4, 2012 at 9:32 PM

Buy Danish on January 4, 2012 at 9:32 PM

Did you listen to her? No! She said Newt has every right to defend his record, his accomplishments and his honor against falsehoods by Romneys PAC. She said politics is not beanbag. She has always advocated for competition and vigorous debate.
To be a shill for Mitt is bad enough to put words in Sarahs mouth is another.
Newt can handle the fire, he survived 14 million dollars worth of it but should he dare defend himself he’s whining?
Chicken Chit Mitt called out the hounds now he’s gonna git butt bit and treed, whine all you want, it’s coming and he asked for it.

ConcealedKerry on January 4, 2012 at 10:00 PM

Sheesh. Just saw Palin compliment Newt’s angry concession speech on Hannity. She had great things to say about Santorum, which was totally fine, but approving of Newt’s whining?

Buy Danish on January 4, 2012 at 9:32 PM

At least she doesn’t say it in “deep background” or send some unnamed staffer to do the dirty work.

ddrintn on January 4, 2012 at 10:02 PM

My focus is and will continue to be: Anyone but Obama! If that is Mitt Romney, then so be it….

annyinboulder on January 5, 2012 at 6:47 AM

Did you listen to her? No! She said Newt has every right to defend his record, his accomplishments and his honor against falsehoods by Romneys PAC. She said politics is not beanbag. She has always advocated for competition and vigorous debate.
To be a shill for Mitt is bad enough to put words in Sarahs mouth is another. BLAH BLAH BLAH…
ConcealedKerry on January 4, 2012 at 10:00 PM

I listened to her. I did not put words into her mouth. The question is not whether someone has “the right” to defend his record. That goes without saying. She specifically cited Santorum’s speech and his speech as superlative efforts. Newt was bitter and petulant, and she applauded him.

You know, if Newt had made up his mind to run for President a few years ago he could have built up an organization and raised money. Instead he decided to run almost on a whim, spent most of the early weeks peddling his books and website, and chose to go off on a cruise (which caused his staff to flee in disgust). In contrast, Romney worked for years to get a foundation in place. Newt has no one but himself to blame for his loss in Iowa, and the lack of funding needed to get his own ads on the air.

And please, I beg you, stop using the word “whine” improperly. I am not “whining”. It’s a second grade vocabulary word.

Buy Danish on January 5, 2012 at 9:08 AM

Now that is laughable. Every single time an issue came up where we had to rally the conservatives to defeat something in Washington, Romney was NOWHERE to be found. He has hidden under his desk for 3+ years.
karenhasfreedom on January 4, 2012 at 4:31 PM

*sigh* (sorry, Cindy, I can’t help it). My comment was about what it takes to prepare for a Presidential campaign – building up a war chest, going around the country getting endorsements and supporters, laying the foundation for a ground game, all of which Newt failed to do. It was in no way about how he would attack Obama.

Seriously, wft do you think I was talking about when I said Newt went on a cruise? It was not a criticism that he went on a cruise instead of attacking Obama. It was a criticism of the fact he has not managed his campaign properly.

Buy Danish on January 5, 2012 at 11:55 AM

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