It seems Trump didn’t like the publicity he got from Newt’s NPR interview yesterday.
That vague, chilly reference to “someone” must have cut Gingrich like a dagger. Shortly after Trump tweeted that, Newt uncorked this, the most fulsome apology since Kevin Kline hung John Cleese out a window. This guy once led the biggest Republican revolution since Reagan. Now he’s reduced to making hostage videos involving swamps and alligators to stay in the good graces of the ex-“Apprentice” host on whom his remaining political relevance depends.
— Newt Gingrich (@newtgingrich) December 22, 2016
Thank goodness America doesn’t have a cultural tradition of seppuku or else that clip would have ended badly.
Speaking of swamps, here’s a twofer for you. Watch below as Corey Lewandowski, Washington’s newest “alligator,” claims that draining the swamp is actually towards the bottom of Trump’s list of priorities. Is that right? We don’t need to focus on the swamp now, conveniently at the very moment Corey himself is set to cash in with one of the most lucrative new lobbying gigs in Washington? Yesterday he made a different excuse to Politico when asked about his new pay-for-play consulting business, insisting that “draining the swamp” was always aimed at reducing government bureaucracy, not putting an end to influence peddling. But that’s nonsense, as Politico correctly noted: The most celebrated reform plan Trump released towards the end of the campaign was his five-point ethics reform proposal, and all five points had to do with lobbying.
The very first point, in fact, called for banning executive branch employees from lobbying for five years after they leave government service, for the obvious reason that someone with lots of friends in the White House would find it easy to monetize that access for rich people who are seeking time with the president. That’s basically the position Corey’s in now. He’s not technically a former executive branch employee but he was being considered for several positions before he withdrew and announced his new business. The point of ethics reform is to limit influence peddling to wealthy special interests — in which case why should it matter to Trump that Lewandowski never actually held a White House job? He has better access to Trump than virtually any of the thousands of executive branch employees to whom point one of Trump’s plan would apply. Trump could refuse to meet with Corey’s new clients on principle, to send a message that no one in his inner circle will be allowed to sell access to the Oval Office even if they never worked for the White House. But he won’t.
By the way, it turns out that Lewandowski was the one who arranged the meeting recently between Trump and Mexican mega-billionaire Carlos Slim. Any theories as to why Corey was eager to show one of the world’s richest people what sort of access he could personally provide to the White House?
— FOX & friends (@foxandfriends) December 22, 2016