Newt Gingrich: If 218 Republicans wanted me to be Speaker again, I'd have to serve

I think we have no choice now but to make him Speaker. Apparently, he’s the only man in America who’d accept the job.

Good point from Twitter pal “Political Math”: Having Newt back in the House would be a lovely complement to the retro 90s Bush/Clinton election that’s in the offing.

“I’m not laughing at it. I’m saying to you — I’m trying to be totally honest with you,” Gingrich told the host. “If you were to say to me 218 have called you up and given you their pledge, obviously no citizen could ever turn down that kind of challenge. This is why George Washington came out of retirement — because there are moments you can’t avoid.”

“What I would say, that would be more practical is if the House Republican Conference wanted me to be in a position to sit down with them and try to help them think this through. I think this is a conference-wide problem,” the former speaker said. “I don’t see the personality problem. I think this is something which requires serious historic thought … this is a serious, I think sobering period in American history.””

“Don’t think of this as a personality thing,” Gingrich told Hannity. “If the House conference wanted me to be helpful in their thinking through how they’re going to solve what I think is much more than a personality problem, I would always be available as a citizen to be helpful.”

As I said in the Romney post, if we’re going to recycle 2012 retreads to be “caretaker” Speakers until the next election, Newt’s obviously a better choice. My hunch is he’d be more acceptable to both wings of the caucus than Romney would: His conservative credentials are less in question, and his record of budget discipline as Speaker in the mid-90s would be broadly acceptable to everyone. (An added bonus for centrists: If Newt, who oversaw the 95-96 shutdown, argued against using that tactic again now, House conservatives might give his opinion more weight than they gave to Boehner’s.) Having Gingrich in the top spot would also scratch the itch that grassroots righties have for a Speaker who’ll use his platform to attack Obama rhetorically. Gingrich would be an able spokesman against the Iran deal and the implications of continuing to raise the debt ceiling. If you’re going to go out of the box for a Speaker who’s not a member of Congress, you could do worse.

Any other wacky choices we should spitball today while the House GOP is melting down? The only limit, it seems, is one’s imagination. Let me go get some caffeine into me and I’ll come back and write a three-thousand-word post on why Herman Cain is the only logical choice to lead a fractured caucus to glorious legislative victory over the Democrats.

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Jazz Shaw 5:31 PM on February 04, 2023