Salvo from South Carolina: Darn voters thinking for themselves again

posted at 7:40 pm on January 22, 2012 by J.E. Dyer

There are several explanations we’re likely to hear about the outcome in South Carolina on Saturday.  Most of them will involve the voters being silly and not knowing what’s good for them.  (I especially like the variant that says South Carolina voters went for Newt Gingrich – Newt Gingrich! – because they’re right next to Georgia.  Yeah, right.  Gingrich is Mr. New American South.)

If the voters weren’t silly, they would understand that it has to be Mitt Romney, because, well, primary voters were silly and picked Christine “I am not a witch” O’Donnell over Mike Castle in Delaware, not to mention running with that goofy Sharron Angle in Nevada, and look how that turned out.  You can’t get California and you probably can’t get New York, if you’re the GOP nominee.  But you have a good shot at Pennsylvania and Ohio, Michigan and maybe even Illinois, if you’re Mitt Romney.  Newt Gingrich?  Forget it.  Gingrich can’t even win Georgia.

And the truth is, this analysis isn’t necessarily wrong.  If I had to make a bet, I’d bet that a Newt Gingrich nominated to run for the GOP in November would implode on the campaign trail.  He’d still make a better president than Obama, but his “sticking it to the media” shtick in the debates would lose its luster when he faced Obama.  He comes across as easily annoyed; the feistiness that resonates with voter sentiment in the primaries would weather time and tides poorly.  As between an irritable Gingrich and a cool, scripted Obama, I would predict without hesitation that the latter’s jokes during a debate would come off better.  All things being equal, that is.

As with the O’Donnell-Castle primary outcome in 2010, however, it’s not the voters who are silly.  They know that all things aren’t equal in 2012.  The voters who put Gingrich over the top yesterday believe that we can’t keep going down the same political path in the United States – and that that holds for Republicans at least as much as for Democrats, if not more.  Their perception is that the GOP leadership is invested in the current path of government: that it doesn’t want change; it is not committed to restoring liberty and limited government, but instead is comfortable with the growth of regulatory intrusiveness, and seeks merely to broker pragmatic accommodations to leftist activism as a sort of rear-guard action.

Considering that the GOP has been doing this for most of the last 80 years, the voters aren’t wrong.  They aren’t wrong about Mitt Romney: his record of enthusiastic accommodations to the left is a set of rusty, clanking weights tethered to the back of the Mitt-mobile.  Gingrich and Santorum both have some ‘splainin’ to do as well, but Gingrich has specifically repudiated some of his earlier faux pas (such as the snuggle-up with Nancy Pelosi on combating “global warming”).  He also speaks trenchantly on the issues that exercise the most voters:  federal debt, health care regulation, regulation in general, government intervention in the economy, illegal immigration.

It does matter to primary voters, moreover, that Gingrich “takes it to” the media by rhetorically denouncing the questions posed in the GOP debates.  Voters on the right perceive the one-sided political attitude of the media to be a significant problem for American politics.  And while I don’t get as excited as others do about Gingrich’s little rhetorical broadsides in the debates –responding with broadsides isn’t, per se, a component of leadership – this is another thing the voters aren’t wrong about.  Media bias is a problem, not only in politics but for our public life in general.  People believe a lot of things that aren’t so today because of the particular narratives favored by the major media.  The perception of public assent generated by the media’s formulations produces an environment for government taking actions that jeopardize our liberties.

Many voters are determined not to be ruled by federal executive agencies whose agendas are approved by MSNBC and the New York Times.  These voters are voting for the candidate they deem most likely to reverse America’s slide into precisely that method of government.  That they see such a candidate in Newt Gingrich speaks more loudly about the general state of the GOP than about anything else.  Voters are seeking to break the inertia and conventionalism of the Republican Party; this is, in fact, a power struggle, and one in which I would not bet against the voters.

The famous salvo from South Carolina in April 1861 precipitated a shooting war under old conditions that no longer prevail.  The Union had all the material advantage in that war, as it had the moral advantage in being determined to preserve the national union while ending slavery.

But today’s South is no longer under such a disadvantage.  A political salvo from the South is a different portent now.  Likewise, the Republican Party doesn’t hold a Union-like advantage over its members, nor is there any valid reason for our federal government to hold such an advantage over a law-abiding people.  Today’s “rebel” GOP voters in South Carolina aren’t the slave-regime old guard, they’re the abolitionists.  We need not be deceived that wanting to reverse the encroachments of the federal government, and defeat the plantation mentality in Washington, is evidence of irresponsibility or lawlessness.  The truth is closer to the opposite.

The people have one tool – the vote – by which to express the sentiment that things have to change.  In 2008, Mitt Romney didn’t look all that different from George W. Bush.  The Obama tenure has been a wake-up call that has put Romney in a new perspective: in 2012, he doesn’t look as different from Barack Obama as conservative voters would prefer.  Obama is less an outlier than the end-gamer of the same big-government principles embraced by both major parties over the past 80 years.  We have now seen with our own eyes where those principles lead, and the voters don’t want to go there.  It’s not the voters who need to wise up; it’s the Republican Party.

J.E. Dyer’s articles have appeared at The Green Room, Commentary’s “contentions,Patheos, The Weekly Standard online, and her own blog, The Optimistic Conservative.

This post was promoted from GreenRoom to HotAir.com.
To see the comments on the original post, look here.


Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Note from Hot Air management: This section is for comments from Hot Air's community of registered readers. Please don't assume that Hot Air management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment just because we let it stand. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our terms of use may lose their posting privilege.

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

Comment pages: 1 2 3 4

The idiots that put Gingrich in contention has doomed the Republican party. Obama sends his thanks!

nonpartisan on January 22, 2012 at 7:43 PM

And the truth is, this analysis isn’t necessarily wrong. If I had to make a bet, I’d bet that a Newt Gingrich nominated to run for the GOP in November would implode on the campaign trail. He’d still make a better president than Obama, but his “sticking it to the media” shtick in the debates would lose its luster when he faced Obama. He comes across as easily annoyed; the feistiness that resonates with voter sentiment in the primaries would weather time and tides poorly. As between an irritable Gingrich and a cool, scripted Obama, I would predict without hesitation that the latter’s jokes during a debate would come off better. All things being equal, that is.

So, then, we’re going with lose…but give ‘em all a good talking to while we’re losing. Okey-dokey. That’ll really make Obama, the democrats, and the so-called Republican establishment sit up and take notice. The loss, I mean. The giant, sweeping, unambiguous, potentially 50-state loss of the GOP candidate to Barack Obama. That’ll show ‘em who’s boss! Yessiree.

Rational Thought on January 22, 2012 at 7:46 PM

Newt will lose about 45 states to Obama. Obama will win with the largest mandate in the history of US elections.

Newt has the highest unfavorables of any nominee, and thats before Obama’s machine has even started digging dirt on Newt.

Thanks, South Carolinians!

nonpartisan on January 22, 2012 at 7:47 PM

The race was always Romney vs. Non-Romney. Non-Romney won 2 out of 3 primaries.

faraway on January 22, 2012 at 7:47 PM

If Romney can’t beat Newt in a debate, how would he ever beat Obama?

faraway on January 22, 2012 at 7:48 PM

NH thought for themselves too, and they gave Newt 5th place.

Iowa thought for themselves too, and they gave Newt 4th place.

Let the people vote. Voting for Newt doesn’t make you “thinking for yourself”; neither is voting for Romney mean an “establishment vote.”

Idiot pundits need to get real jobs, that’s my conclusion.

haner on January 22, 2012 at 7:49 PM

So, then, we’re going with lose…but give ‘em all a good talking to while we’re losing. Okey-dokey. That’ll really make Obama, the democrats, and the so-called Republican establishment sit up and take notice. The loss, I mean. The giant, sweeping, unambiguous, potentially 50-state loss of the GOP candidate to Barack Obama. That’ll show ‘em who’s boss! Yessiree.

Rational Thought on January 22, 2012 at 7:46 PM

That’s why I say that these so-called true conservatives are a bunch of morons. These were the same arguments the idiots made when they voted for Christine O’Donnell.

Chudi on January 22, 2012 at 7:49 PM

Oh goodie.

Another Newt/Romney thread. Like we’re going to hear something we haven’t heard before.

Give it a rest.

fogw on January 22, 2012 at 7:50 PM

Very thought provoking and interesting blog post J E Dyer..Good job..:)

PS..Thanks..:)

Dire Straits on January 22, 2012 at 7:50 PM

If Romney can’t beat Newt in a debate, how would he ever beat Obama?

Ugh, because a primary audience isn’t the same as a primary audience. The tactics that Newt has used to win debates in the primary would get his ass booed offstage.

Newt is the new Christine ODonell, makes conservatives feel good in primaries and then implodes in general when its not longer just a friendly audience.

nonpartisan on January 22, 2012 at 7:51 PM

Newt will beat Obama easily. A double-digit landslide. GOP elite mentality produced McCain, who was Obama’s biggest supporter. GOP elite are wrong again. They are just panicked because Newt threatens their power. They fear Newt will win and that puts them out of business and out of power.

doorsxp on January 22, 2012 at 7:51 PM

Like you’re not apart of the “establishment.” Regardless, Coulter is right, Gingrich is trash. I supported Perry but now that he is out, Romney is the only option at a viable candidate for November.

RedState and Hotair is projecting conservatism on Newt, dismissing his gravely serious flaws. Sure, you will give them passing mention but then explain them away. Forget censure, forget ethics violations, forget multiple divorces/affairs, forget major liberal positions and forget ethanol. We can just sweep it all under the rug in the pursuit of Romney destruction.

The only blogger that has retained some sanity is Ace at ASHQ. At least he has recognized Gingrich for what he is…

I am still confident that Romney will win but not before you tards bitter the entire base. Then you can all blog until the end of the world on how you were right about Mitt and how the mythical unicorn establishment was wrong.

ConservativeLaw on January 22, 2012 at 7:52 PM

Newt will beat Obama easily. A double-digit landslide. GOP elite mentality produced McCain, who was Obama’s biggest supporter. GOP elite are wrong again. They are just panicked because Newt threatens their power. They fear Newt will win and that puts them out of business and out of power.

And GOP idiots put Christine O’Donell on the ballot. Gee, that worked out well didn’t it?

nonpartisan on January 22, 2012 at 7:52 PM

As between an irritable Gingrich and a cool, scripted Obama, I would predict without hesitation that the latter’s jokes during a debate would come off better.

Disagree with this. Obama’s only cool and scripted when not challenged. Gingrich will force Obama to be challenged, unlike Romney.

bloghooligan on January 22, 2012 at 7:53 PM

I could not agree more with your last statement. Great post!

kg598301 on January 22, 2012 at 7:53 PM

RedState and Hotair is projecting conservatism on Newt, dismissing his gravely serious flaws. Sure, you will give them passing mention but then explain them away. Forget censure, forget ethics violations, forget multiple divorces/affairs, forget major liberal positions and forget ethanol. We can just sweep it all under the rug in the pursuit of Romney destruction.

The only blogger that has retained some sanity is Ace at ASHQ. At least he has recognized Gingrich for what he is…

The thing is bloggers want this to drag out. They get more drama, more web hits, more money. They’re like the media in that a longer fight is in the interests of commentators.

nonpartisan on January 22, 2012 at 7:54 PM

The tactics that Newt has used to win debates in the primary would get his ass booed offstage.

Newt is the new Christine ODonell, makes conservatives feel good in primaries and then implodes in general when its not longer just a friendly audience.

nonpartisan on January 22, 2012 at 7:51 PM

So… winning a debate is a losing formula in your mind.

faraway on January 22, 2012 at 7:55 PM

Good analysis, but I don’t agree that Newt would lose in a face-off with Obama. I suspect the opposite is true and for all the sturm and drang over the “unelectability” of Gingrich, I further suspect he is the one candidate that Obama fears most in an open debate. One of the very few Obama assets is his mellifluous voice and his undeniable rhetorical skills. By contrast, Newt’s voice is pitchy, strained, and frankly, just a tad annoying. However, what Newt has is complete missing in Obama: passion. Newt does it without a prepared script and without a teleprompter. He is better off the cuff than anyone running and sounds more honest, despite his squeak. That overwhelmingly endears Newt to the voters, who are sick of platitudes and want some real action. Yep, darn voters thinking for themselves again. Just look what mischief they have gotten themselves into.

And it’s long past time.

KyWriter on January 22, 2012 at 7:55 PM

go newt

congma on January 22, 2012 at 7:55 PM

Newt will beat Obama easily. A double-digit landslide.

doorsxp on January 22, 2012 at 7:51 PM

You’ve got to be f’n kidding me. We’re doomed with this kind of false bravado.

haner on January 22, 2012 at 7:55 PM

Newt might actually adapt and take a different approach in the general election. It’s not like he is a zombie like Mitt.

WhatNot on January 22, 2012 at 7:56 PM

And GOP idiots put Christine O’Donell on the ballot. Gee, that worked out well didn’t it?

nonpartisan on January 22, 2012 at 7:52 PM

GOP idiots won control of the House in 2010, and beat Romney in 2 out of 3 primary races. Bow to your new overlords.

faraway on January 22, 2012 at 7:57 PM

Wow, judging from the comments so far, the recent HotAir open registry really moved this site to the left.

People around here used to be pretty conservative.

Pattosensei on January 22, 2012 at 7:57 PM

I hate Newt!
I hate Romney!

We ALL hate Obama!

Rinse, repeat.

FireFly on January 22, 2012 at 7:58 PM

I’m not going to call voters idiots; they have a reason for pulling the lever to vote their conscience.

However, Santorum and Romney need to get their vision of America out to the public now and be far more aggressive when dealing with the Attack Muffin. Pull punches and get in his face. Santorum has already done that. Newt is far more docile with people who will return fire.

Paulnuts are Paulnuts, and they will support Paul no matter what.

If Newt decides to use the “yell at the moderator” chestnut, call him out on why he is so prone to angry, irrational outbursts. I think the public sees through his faux indignation and staged blow-ups at this point. Sure, they’re mad at the liberal media, but they will be forever. Also, when Newt proposes a new entitlement, shoot it down immediately.

Mitt, two words: Ann Romney. If she is amenable and able to participate, book Ann Romney for in-depth interviews, press opportunities,and other speaking engagements. Ann Romney is your best partner and campaign ambassador.

Rick Santorum: Same as above. Ask your family to participate as well to the extent of their willingness and capabilities.

Philly on January 22, 2012 at 7:58 PM

Voters thinking for themselves? Hardly. They are doing the opposite of what they perceive “the establishment” wants them to do. That isn’t thinking for themselves, they are just reacting without thinking at all.

If they were REALLY thinking they would know that Gingrich has no chance to win in the general election. His unfavorables are just too high and all the yelling at the media is not going to turn that around.

echosyst on January 22, 2012 at 7:58 PM

The Obama tenure has been a wake-up call that has put Romney in a new perspective: in 2012, he doesn’t look as different from Barack Obama as conservative voters would prefer.

Romney clearly has a messaging problem. Idiots like nonpartisan blame the SC voters for being so damned stupid they didn’t vote for Romney (did you even read this thread before bleating out your stupidity?).

But the reality is that Romney seems to be going down the same path as McCain in 2008. He is assuming that anybody to the right of him will automatically vote for him so he doesn’t have to bother addressing their concerns because he already has their vote (they going to vote for Obama?). This ignores an important fact. It isn’t just about who those who go to the polls vote for. Any GOP candidate needs grassroots support to get that vote out. In other words, no matter how much elitists like Romney sneer at SC voters he needs those little old ladies out there stuffing envelopes and making phone calls as any campaign. For that, SC should be a cautionary tale for the Romney campaign.

Gingrich decisively won in SC in the same week ABC attempted to derail his campaign by warmed over vindictiveness from an ex-spouse. It is clear the conservative MAJORITY of the GOP is not ready to embrace Romney as their guy. Romney needs to do more to assure the MAJORITY of his party that he is different than Obama or any other liberal politician. To date he has not done a good job of doing so as he has pandered to the middle more than shoring up support among what has to be his base.

Happy Nomad on January 22, 2012 at 7:58 PM

Go Newt! Good article BTW..

tinkerthinker on January 22, 2012 at 7:59 PM

Newt will beat Obama easily. A double-digit landslide. GOP elite mentality produced McCain, who was Obama’s biggest supporter. GOP elite are wrong again. They are just panicked because Newt threatens their power. They fear Newt will win and that puts them out of business and out of power.

And GOP idiots put Christine O’Donell on the ballot. Gee, that worked out well didn’t it?

1.) Christine O’Donnell supports your candidate, not mine. You trash your own team. Good strategy.

2.) Newt is vastly smarter and more talented than your establishment candidate. Christine O’Donnell is an airhead, evidenced by the fact that she thinks your candidate is best. There is no comparison.

3.) You are your ilk are jealous of Newt because of his superior intelligence and because he whipped your milquetoast candidate into submission: Mitt is going to release his tax returns now.

doorsxp on January 22, 2012 at 8:00 PM

nonpartisan on January 22, 2012 at 7:54 PM

Right because without primary news the world grinds to a halt. Your guy needs to make the case, he’s lost to two different candidates and that’s just this time. If he’s not smart enough to make a compelling argument over his party brethren how is he going to beat Obama?

Cindy Munford on January 22, 2012 at 8:00 PM

Gingrich is the most disliked American political figure since they began polling on others besides the President. He’s been way underwater on approve/disapprove ever since the government shutdown in 1995.

Independents, unaffiliated, and swing voters hate him with a steady passion. While political fortunes have gone up and down for both parties in the 16+ years since then, Newt’s have never wavered more than a few points either way. America knows Newt and doesn’t like him and never will.

But yeah, he’ll give Obama and the media a good talking to before going down in flames and taking the down-ticket with him.

Now you know why South Carolina has consistently scored 49th out of 50 states in education.

Adjoran on January 22, 2012 at 8:00 PM

The idiots that put Gingrich in contention has doomed the Republican party. Obama sends his thanks!

nonpartisan on January 22, 2012 at 7:43 PM

And good riddance. A GOP run by the likes of McConnell, Graham, and Steele is useless anyway.

FadeToBolivia on January 22, 2012 at 8:00 PM

With a rebel yell they cried- “Newt, Newt, Newt”

Igor R. on January 22, 2012 at 8:01 PM

Gingrich has specifically repudiated some of his earlier faux pas (such as the snuggle-up with Nancy Pelosi on combating “global warming”

He didn’t repudiate it. He said it was a mistake because he didn’t gain any new liberal support and he lost conservative support.

Buddahpundit on January 22, 2012 at 8:02 PM

Oh goodie.
Another Newt/Romney thread. Like we’re going to hear something we haven’t heard before.

Give it a rest.

fogw on January 22, 2012 at 7:50 PM

C’mon, can’t you just feel the love from the Romney section? Don’t you want to hear more about how bad, fat, and ugly Newt is?

arnold ziffel on January 22, 2012 at 8:02 PM

Newt is the new Reagan. Get used to it, you’re going to be calling him president for a long time.

doorsxp on January 22, 2012 at 8:02 PM

Maybe we should wait and see what Karl Rove thinks about all of this…

d1carter on January 22, 2012 at 8:02 PM

Newt will lose about 45 states to Obama. Obama will win with the largest mandate in the history of US elections.

Newt has the highest unfavorables of any nominee, and thats before Obama’s machine has even started digging dirt on Newt.

nonpartisan on January 22, 2012 at 7:47 PM

Really? Which 45?

Name the states in the south that Newt would lose. Alabama? How about the ones in the Midwest? Newt would lose Oklahoma?

Come on. Whether it’s Newt or Mittens, the Pubs start with their usual base, as do the Dems. There are the middle dozen battleground states. None of that changes much. What does change is the likelihood that Newt, versus Mitt, would win those battlegrounds.

It’s far too early to know that. Yes, Newt has high unfavorables, and perhaps Axelrod and Plouffe will exploit that to the max. They might also exploit Mitt’s unfavorables. That’s what they do, and the Dems know that they can’t run a positive campaign, since they have nothing positive to talk about, so they’ll run a negative one regardless of who the Pub nominee is.

Obama has unfavorables as well, and the real question (I suggest) is which Pub candidate is better able to exploit those. Mitt has his business acumen and private sector success; Newt has his passion and ideas. I don’t know in the end which works better against Obama.

Newt isn’t unarmed. Mittens isn’t a loser. If I wrung my hands as much as some at Hot Air I’d need lotion. Stop whinging and start working on beating Obama. Either candidate can do it, it’s just a question of how.

Steve White on January 22, 2012 at 8:03 PM

I watched John Boehner talk about the art of the possible today, on Fox News. When you don’t have the guts, there are much fewer possibilities than there are if you have guts. John Boehner has no guts yet Harry Reid played him like a cheap violin.

The establishment, Republicans, Democrats, and Media, don’t want Newt in D.C., because he knows how the game is played and will willingly engage in the game and get things done. Romney, will go along to get along and the only things that will get done are what the timid Republican leadership want to get done.

At this time, in our countries history, that’s not enough. We need a President who will overturn Obamacare, not a President who had the plan Obama used to devise it. Romney will only try to make it work, Newt will get rid of it and propose a workable solution.

bflat879 on January 22, 2012 at 8:04 PM

Newt is the new Reagan. Get used to it, you’re going to be calling him president for a long time.

doorsxp on January 22, 2012 at 8:02 PM

Well Chuck Norris did endorse him. And what do you get when you spell “Norris” backwards???

Igor R. on January 22, 2012 at 8:04 PM

I really cannot fathom why people are choosing Gingrich over Romney. Really, it makes zero sense. It is as if they had a major accident where the part of their brain that controls memory was damaged. That is the only explanation when forgetting Newt’s past.

Conservatives all had mini heart attacks when Perry turned out to be a dud, but do not abandon reason for Gingrich.

ConservativeLaw on January 22, 2012 at 8:04 PM

Maybe we should wait and see what Karl Rove thinks about all of this…

d1carter on January 22, 2012 at 8:02 PM

Karl looked pretty pissed on the Fox sunday show.

Igor R. on January 22, 2012 at 8:05 PM

Maybe we should wait and see what Karl Rove thinks about all of this…

d1carter on January 22, 2012 at 8:02 PM

Karl Rove is busy drawing hearts around “Mitt” on his little whiteboard.

doorsxp on January 22, 2012 at 8:05 PM

Maybe we should wait and see what Karl Rove thinks about all of this…

d1carter on January 22, 2012 at 8:02 PM

LoLz..You do love food fights..:)

Dire Straits on January 22, 2012 at 8:06 PM

The primaries have proven at least one thing. If you’re Godless, Mitt is your candidate. Right AP?

doorsxp on January 22, 2012 at 8:06 PM

We have now seen with our own eyes where those principles lead, and the voters don’t want to go there. It’s not the voters who need to wise up; it’s the Republican Party.

Between this post and Jazz’s, Hot Air has provided the best analysis of the “lessons” to be learned from Newt’s win and the GOP base that I’ve read this weekend. Well done Dyer.

Weight of Glory on January 22, 2012 at 8:06 PM

I really cannot fathom why people are choosing Gingrich over Romney. Really, it makes zero sense.

ConservativeLaw on January 22, 2012 at 8:04 PM

Romney comes in 2nd in every debate. There’s that.

faraway on January 22, 2012 at 8:07 PM

Good column.

Dr. Tesla on January 22, 2012 at 8:08 PM

Newt is the new Reagan. Get used to it, you’re going to be calling him president for a long time.

doorsxp on January 22, 2012 at 8:02 PM

Newt seems to think so. And his grandiosity and arrogance are two of his problems.

Philly on January 22, 2012 at 8:08 PM

It’s funny people mention Christine O’Donnell – she endorsed Romney. :) Own it, Mittbots!

alwaysfiredup on January 22, 2012 at 8:09 PM

Weight of Glory on January 22, 2012 at 8:06 PM

+10

FireFly on January 22, 2012 at 8:09 PM

I really cannot fathom why people are choosing Gingrich over Romney. Really, it makes zero sense. It is as if they had a major accident where the part of their brain that controls memory was damaged. That is the only explanation when forgetting Newt’s past.

Conservatives all had mini heart attacks when Perry turned out to be a dud, but do not abandon reason for Gingrich.

ConservativeLaw on January 22, 2012 at 8:04 PM

That’s just it. Smart people support Newt because he is the smartest candidate. People who cannot fathom it are necessarily dumb, thus support one of the dumber candidates. Reading a book without pictures once in a while might help you with your problem.

doorsxp on January 22, 2012 at 8:09 PM

And his grandiosity and arrogance are two of his problems.

Philly on January 22, 2012 at 8:08 PM

They are problems for Obama as well.

alwaysfiredup on January 22, 2012 at 8:10 PM

And good riddance. A GOP run by the likes of McConnell, Graham, and Steele is useless anyway.

FadeToBolivia on January 22, 2012 at 8:00 PM

Newt is to the left of those bozos.

Buddahpundit on January 22, 2012 at 8:10 PM

I really cannot fathom why people are choosing Gingrich over Romney. Really, it makes zero sense.

ConservativeLaw on January 22, 2012 at 8:04 PM

Let me repost something I wrote on another thread (and I never liked Newt, to put it mildly):

Newt is winning because he is smart enough to figure out that he needs to show he is the fighter and capable of acting on those conclusions. Romney may or not know it, but his personality does not allow him to come out swinging like a maniac which is what the audience wants. The voting public wants a populist fighter not a patrician CEO. That’s all there is really is to that. I mean there is more, but this is why Newt is winning.

Igor R. on January 22, 2012 at 8:10 PM

Can any Newt supporters explain why they would choose an fat, ugly toad who cheats on his wives and lobbies for fannie and got kicked out by colleagues over a handsome experienced leader with success in government and business and a beautiful family who is as tall as Obama and has a great voice?

I feel like I live in Bizzaro world.

nonpartisan on January 22, 2012 at 8:10 PM

Wow, judging from the comments so far, the recent HotAir open registry really moved this site to the left.

People around here used to be pretty conservative.

Pattosensei on January 22, 2012 at 7:57 PM

As one of those recently allowed to join the club after something like two years of closed membership, I would suggest that it is less a movement to the left as it is the fact that the previous HA was an echo chamber of the same opinion and dissenters were gradually winnowed out for one heresy or the other.

Seriously, HA went far too long between offering new voices. To be offended that the echo chamber of old is gone is just wrong. Trolls will be dealt with but any site comments worth reading will have a more dynamic way of gathering new voices than opening registration every couple of years and then editing out voices that offend.

I’ve followed HA for a while now but, of course, could not comment because I was not one of the favored few. It really offends me when I see comments that amount to the idea that the neighborhood has gone down since new people have moved in to comment.

Happy Nomad on January 22, 2012 at 8:10 PM

Mitt is hammering Newt on Huckabee now about his alleged health-care lobbying and Freddie/Fannie insider dealings. Being more aggressive helps Mitt.

Mitt says that Newt’s peers are coming forward with stories of his erraticness and ethics problems that indicate that he has problems with his style of leadership.

Philly on January 22, 2012 at 8:10 PM

But they are ignorant hicks who don’t understand the greatness of ultra conservative, Mitt Romney. – Ann Coulter

carbon_footprint on January 22, 2012 at 8:11 PM

And his grandiosity and arrogance are two of his problems.

Philly on January 22, 2012 at 8:08 PM

They are problems for Obama as well.

alwaysfiredup on January 22, 2012 at 8:10 PM

Bingo.

Philly on January 22, 2012 at 8:11 PM

Can any Newt supporters explain why they would choose an fat, ugly toad who cheats on his wives and lobbies for fannie and got kicked out by colleagues over a handsome experienced leader with success in government and business and a beautiful family who is as tall as Obama and has a great voice?

I feel like I live in Bizzaro world.

nonpartisan on January 22, 2012 at 8:10 PM

I am not a Newt supporter, but I (and I think you) have to accept that people want a FIGHTER, a DIRTY STREET FIGHTER, not a patrician CEO. When Mitt starts screaming the media is the enemy and that Obama is a Saul Alinsky radical, he will start winning.

Igor R. on January 22, 2012 at 8:12 PM

Lol, let us choose Romney because he is handsome, slim and does not cheat.
Forget about his propensity to poop on the Second Amendment, Pro-Life, Cap and Trade, Global Warming, etc. etc.

carbon_footprint on January 22, 2012 at 8:12 PM

It should also be mentioned that prejudice was evident in the results as well. A plurality of voters said having a candidate who “shares my religious values” was “very important” to their decision.

That hurt Romney as a Mormon and Santorum as a Catholic. Newt’s Catholicism didn’t affect his support because even voters as dumb as ours know he doesn’t really mean it.

Adjoran on January 22, 2012 at 8:13 PM

Their perception is that the GOP leadership is invested in the current path of government: that it doesn’t want change; it is not committed to restoring liberty and limited government, but instead is comfortable with the growth of regulatory intrusiveness, and seeks merely to broker pragmatic accommodations to leftist activism as a sort of rear-guard action.

Problem is, Newt Gingrich isn’t the guy to deliver “change”. Out of all those candidates, Paul is the most likely to do that. This is not what is driving the adulterer’s candidacy, it’s the fact he’s not Romney. It’s as simple as that. Nobody interested in change sends an old Washington hand back to DC.

changer1701 on January 22, 2012 at 8:13 PM

Allow me to disagree.

1) Gingrich is hardly the equivalent of O’Donnell. Gingrich has by far the most successful resume of conservative governance of any of the candidates. Gingrich elected a GOP Congress and convinced a Dem president to eliminate the welfare entitlement, curb the Medicare/Medicaid entitlements, reduce the size of government to 19% of GDP and put the budget into surplus for the first time in a generation. Romney’s resume is center left. Santorum and Paul never convinced their peers to place them in a position to lead a government.

2) Gingrich is a revolutionary with all the lack of sobriety that implies. This makes him perfect for an electorate in near rebellion against the establishments of both parties which Dem pollster Doug Shoen properly and in horror called “pre-revolutionary.” Romney is a RINO misrepresenting himself as a conservative as John McCain did in Arizona to get reelected in 2010. Santorum may sneer at “grandiosity,” but he does not offer the sea change Americans are looking for. Paul is offering a sea change, but one that goes into directions Americans are not particularly ready to embrace.

If Gingrich runs a campaign of full throated conservatism offering to repeal the overreaching government poverty of Obama and a return to limited government prosperity of the late 1990s, how precisely does Gingrich lose?

Bart DePalma on January 22, 2012 at 8:14 PM

Huck is right: The tax issue is a red herring.

Philly on January 22, 2012 at 8:15 PM

Oh goodie.

Another Newt/Romney thread. Like we’re going to hear something we haven’t heard before.

Give it a rest.

fogw on January 22, 2012 at 7:50 PM

Yea, and just think, after Newt is elected we’ll have four years of this..

Shain1611 on January 22, 2012 at 8:15 PM

Problem is, Newt Gingrich isn’t the guy to deliver “change”. Out of all those candidates, Paul is the most likely to do that. This is not what is driving the adulterer’s candidacy, it’s the fact he’s not Romney. It’s as simple as that. Nobody interested in change sends an old Washington hand back to DC.

changer1701 on January 22, 2012 at 8:13 PM

Jim DeMint isn’t running. Newt at least sounds angry and willing to fight for SOMETHING that’s not status quo. Mitt unfortunately sounds like he can’t wait to get back to the country club.

Igor R. on January 22, 2012 at 8:16 PM

No, they are not thinking for themselves…they are just loving the red meat. Remember, these are Strom Thurmond voters.

rubberneck on January 22, 2012 at 8:16 PM

Every time I turn to Fox, Mittens is on. Good thing Fox is not in the tank for the Romney.
Credibility much Fox News? the news thats’ fair and propagandized!

Prop him up all you can Mitt lost across all ages,genders and political persuasions except moderate/liberal Repubs.

We don’t need, can’t afford moderate /liberal repubs

ConcealedKerry on January 22, 2012 at 8:16 PM

Oh please,we put a forth a weak “Obama is a good man” Mr. McCain, with a Bush-fatigue American electorate, a fawning,non-vetting media and the GOP was still within 6 points of the popular vote…

Obama now has a record he cannot defend….Gallup had him at his lowest rating ever this past week…he goes to Orlando this past week and the local Senator as well as the mayor disappear..his stench is far reaching..he will be obliterated in Nov…

hillsoftx on January 22, 2012 at 8:16 PM

Newt Gingrich is an animal that has only been taught one trick, and that is to attack the media. He is not a human being capable of calculating methods for the situation at hand. He is not able to learn things on his own. In fact, he is more like a hard wired non-reprogrammable machine than an animal. He has only one hardwired program that functions and that is to attack the media. He is not even alive. He is incapable of adaptation. What you see today is exactly what you will get tomorrow. Wait, I mean, he is totally erratic and what you see today will be a fond memory tomorrow as he explodes doing something crazy. Well, that seems to say he can change, so scratch that! What I am trying to tell you is that my heart strings are totally enmeshed with the one truth Romney, may light always be upon his shimmering lovely flawless sk… Wait, what were we talking about again?

astonerii on January 22, 2012 at 8:17 PM

Can any Newt supporters explain why they would choose an fat, ugly toad who cheats on his wives and lobbies for fannie and got kicked out by colleagues over a handsome experienced leader with success in government and business and a beautiful family who is as tall as Obama and has a great voice?

I feel like I live in Bizzaro world.

nonpartisan on January 22, 2012 at 8:10 PM

I am not a Newt supporter, but I (and I think you) have to accept that people want a FIGHTER, a DIRTY STREET FIGHTER, not a patrician CEO. When Mitt starts screaming the media is the enemy and that Obama is a Saul Alinsky radical, he will start winning.

Igor R. on January 22, 2012 at 8:12 PM

Well, the fit has hit the shan, and I believe that you will see Teams Romney and Santorum get nasty. And if they go nuclear on Newt’s character, it will be a gruesome mess. ‘Nuff said.

Philly on January 22, 2012 at 8:17 PM

Problem is, Newt Gingrich isn’t the guy to deliver “change”. Out of all those candidates, Paul is the most likely to do that. This is not what is driving the adulterer’s candidacy, it’s the fact he’s not Romney. It’s as simple as that. Nobody interested in change sends an old Washington hand back to DC.

changer1701 on January 22, 2012 at 8:13 PM

Jim DeMint isn’t running. Newt at least sounds angry and willing to fight for SOMETHING that’s not status quo. Mitt unfortunately sounds like he can’t wait to get back to the country club.

Yeah, vote for the guy who acts like an angry bitter old man! Yeah, we want an angry person running the country.

rubberneck on January 22, 2012 at 8:17 PM

Am I in bizzaro world where Newt is the conservative standard. I recall reading right here the yelps and indnation when he cozied up to Pelosi, favored ethonal subsidies, stepped in it with Freddie Mac. WTH happened?

bluealice on January 22, 2012 at 8:18 PM

Bingo.

Philly on January 22, 2012 at 8:11 PM

Why? If Obama has the same weakness, a Dem attack along that line will fizzle.

It’s why we want Newt over Mitt in the first place: we WANT to make the “ObamaCare is bad” argument, and we don’t need to choose a guy who would make an attack along that line fizzle. The same theory protects Newt from attacks based on his three marriages; with WJC, Dems have absolutely no room to talk and sound like total hypocrites when they do. This is good for us.

alwaysfiredup on January 22, 2012 at 8:18 PM

1) Mitt looks like a DB.
2) His wife donates to planned parenthood.
3) He’s never got 50% in election ever.
4) He’s never beat Newt is a debate and never will. He has no chance of beating Obama in a debate either because he is Obama, but without the support of the media and the dems.

doorsxp on January 22, 2012 at 8:18 PM

Can any Newt supporters explain why they would choose an fat, ugly toad who cheats on his wives and lobbies for fannie and got kicked out by colleagues

I feel like I live in Bizzaro world.

nonpartisan on January 22, 2012 at 8:10 PM

Because many of his supporters are just as fat and have ex-wives they probably hate as well. Hence the cheering. SC is the 5th most obese state, with 28% obese (number 1 is Mississippi at 30%). SC also has the highest divorce rate in the Bible Belt.

The Bureau of Census’ vital statistics report a dim outlook concerning marriage records. With over 50%-60% of marriages reporting failure, adultery rates have soared 50%-70% in recent years. Even more alarming, the Bible Belt reports divorces to be over 50% of the national average. South Carolina marriages that end in divorce have rates making the top ten in the US.

Newt Gingrich fits in perfectly in this environment.

haner on January 22, 2012 at 8:18 PM

Foodstamps or Paychecks???

NEWT!

GhoulAid on January 22, 2012 at 8:19 PM

I believe that you will see Teams Romney and Santorum get nasty.

Philly on January 22, 2012 at 8:17 PM

Oh sure, but what people want is Romney and Santorum themselves to be able to do it, not surrogates. And neither really seems very feisty.

alwaysfiredup on January 22, 2012 at 8:19 PM

Gingrich can’t win, Gingrich can’t win, Gingrich can’t win, gees folks just saying it does not make it so. Look who Gingrich is running against. What is Obama going to do, attack him personally? Done and done. Attack his flip flops? Done and Done. Make him out to be some sort of insider? A racist? An alien? What, what what can Obama do to distract voters from the awful economy, his incompetent presidency and his race bating administration?
Obama can’t attack Gingrich from the left, Gingrich has already adopted a populist conservatism that is against everything big including government. Obama attacking from the right, well that would be a Benny Hill sketch.
Gingrich can win, why? Look at his opponent and the record he will have to run on.

Smedley on January 22, 2012 at 8:19 PM

Huck is right: The tax issue is a red herring.

Philly on January 22, 2012 at 8:15 PM

Not for the community organizer who is behind the scenes and in front of the scenes organizing the OWS crowd.
It is front and center for Obama and his army of free loaders armed with free cell phones paid for by the US taxpayer, they just await their call to arms by the POTUS ACORN arm and media wing.

ConcealedKerry on January 22, 2012 at 8:20 PM

Huck is right: The tax issue is a red herring.

Philly on January 22, 2012 at 8:15 PM

Obama and Axelrod created the Occupy movement to eat this herring. Romney showed that he can’t withstand the scrutiny on this topic.

faraway on January 22, 2012 at 8:20 PM

I hate Newt! He is a fat, pale white man who knows a lot of annoying facts. He cheats! He cheats on poor, poor wives. Loser.

carbon_footprint on January 22, 2012 at 8:21 PM

Well, the fit has hit the shan, and I believe that you will see Teams Romney and Santorum get nasty. And if they go nuclear on Newt’s character, it will be a gruesome mess. ‘Nuff said.

Philly on January 22, 2012 at 8:17 PM

We’ll just have to see. I couldn’t believe that Mitt didn’t go on attack in the last two debates. Even Santorum tried to do the best he could. But Mitt is always the father figure from the ’50s, always calm, cool, and collected and starting every other sentence with “Why” for no apparent reason. Get f*cking angry Mitt, or just disappear.

Igor R. on January 22, 2012 at 8:21 PM

When Mitt starts screaming the media is the enemy and that Obama is a Saul Alinsky radical, he will start winning.

Igor R. on January 22, 2012 at 8:12 PM

He doesn’t have to go that far but he at least has to prove who his opponent really is and admit that the media is not his friend. At least Newt argues the premise of the medias questions, they aren’t looking for answers they are setting the narrative. It has to stop and if Romney wants to take that on I will gladly support him. So far, it appears that he does not.

Cindy Munford on January 22, 2012 at 8:22 PM

Newt will win.
I just sent him $2,500.
He’s raised a huge amount in the last 24 hours and it will only continue.
Get on the Newt train before it’s too late.
The Mitt ship is sinking fast; abandon ship.

doorsxp on January 22, 2012 at 8:22 PM

Between this post and Jazz’s, Hot Air has provided the best analysis of the “lessons” to be learned from Newt’s win and the GOP base that I’ve read this weekend. Well done Dyer.

Weight of Glory on January 22, 2012 at 8:06 PM

Agreed!

Difficultas_Est_Imperium on January 22, 2012 at 8:22 PM

Oh, and Newt is a racist man. Calling Obama the Foodstamp President was a salvo to his blackiness.

carbon_footprint on January 22, 2012 at 8:22 PM

haner on January 22, 2012 at 8:18 PM

god forbid there are fat people!!! THE HORROR! did michelle my belle put you up to that post? hmmmm????

GhoulAid on January 22, 2012 at 8:22 PM

haner on January 22, 2012 at 8:18 PM

Fat and ugly is the new pretty.

Igor R. on January 22, 2012 at 8:23 PM

Can any Newt supporters explain why they would choose an fat, ugly toad who cheats on his wives and lobbies for fannie and got kicked out by colleagues over a handsome experienced leader with success in government and business and a beautiful family who is as tall as Obama and has a great voice?

nonpartisan on January 22, 2012 at 8:10 PM

You truly are an idiot. You attack Gingrich’s character (a fair charge to make so long as you understand that there are two individuals involved in a relationship and wife number two was also mistress number one). You mistake Gingrich’s employment with Freddie for Fannie. And the last part of your post is nothing but gibberish.

If you want to argue against Gingrich, do it logically and with fact instead of calling him a fat ugly toad.

Happy Nomad on January 22, 2012 at 8:23 PM

Gingrich can win, why? Look at his opponent and the record he will have to run on.

Smedley on January 22, 2012 at 8:19 PM

60% of the country has an unfavorable opinion of Newt. 60% of the country also have an unfavorable impression of Newt when he was speaker. He won’t win blue dog democrats or independants.

Why? They don’t like him. No that is a fact of life, and if you can’t grasp it, you’ve got some sort of learning disability.

rubberneck on January 22, 2012 at 8:23 PM

And GOP idiots put Christine O’Donell on the ballot. Gee, that worked out well didn’t it?

nonpartisan on January 22, 2012 at 7:52 PM

Apple, meet orange.

herm2416 on January 22, 2012 at 8:23 PM

I hate Santorum! He propagates more then a white tailed rabbit and he wants cameras into my bedroom to make sure there is no funny, ghey stuff going on.

carbon_footprint on January 22, 2012 at 8:23 PM

You know what people are really tired of…elitist a$$holes telling them what they should think and how they should vote. To the Romneybots….bwahahahahahahahaha!!!!!!!!!!!! Can’t even crack 30% against an incredibly weak field. I think that tells us something about Mittens….

Doomsday on January 22, 2012 at 8:23 PM

So the Romney camp is messaging, through proxies, that Newt is too unelectable due to negatives, in the favorable/unfavorable polls?

Obama is more unfavorable. I don’t believe for a hot minute his polling on the favorable/unfavorable. I don’t know anyone who LIKES him and I am surrounded by Dems.

I am back to the question, what state that Kerry did NOT win in 2004, can Obama win in 2012? I can’t think of one.

karenhasfreedom on January 22, 2012 at 8:24 PM

Oh man, RonPaul hates Israel. He wants us to cut all ties to all foreign nations. He is a senile, old fart.

carbon_footprint on January 22, 2012 at 8:24 PM

Nonpartisan – You just dont get it do you? The whole primaary is going right over your head and your ignorance is actually pretty sad. Newt will be the next president and your lack of understanding how and why it happened makes all us wish you would go back and discuss American Idol or your favoirte foot long hot dog recipe.
Please, stop trying to taslk about things you don’t understand.

magic kingdom on January 22, 2012 at 8:24 PM

Comment pages: 1 2 3 4