Rick Perry because his decisions as Texas governor, especially his cavalier attitude about the death penalty and how it resonates with Republicans, have real world significance. But what Rick Santorum thinks about anything is not worth thinking about, much less writing about.
But now it is being reported that Newt Gingrich, by process of elimination, has "bumped up" in the polls, and I feel compelled to speak out. How is it that a majority of a supposedly mainstream political party can support Rick Perry, Herman Cain, Newt Gingrich or Michele Bachmann?
Today let's focus on Newton Leroy Gingrich. Gingrich was charged with 84 ethics violations when he was Speaker of the House, and disciplined for one of them. He resigned as Speaker in disgrace after his leadership was held responsible for unprecedented Republican losses in the 1998 mid-term election.
Gingrich, a social conservative, has been married three times. He was having an affair during his first marriage and he went to the hospital where his wife was recovering from the surgical removal of a tumor to discuss the terms of divorce. There are recent reports that he bought his current wife $1 million worth of jewelry to assuage her objections to his presidential run.
Gingrich is an abrasive, polarizing figure. He blamed the 1999 Columbine shootings on "the elite news media, the liberal academic elite, the liberal political elite." Same with Virginia Tech. As Think Progress reminds us Gingrich blamed the residents of New Orleans’ 9th ward for “a failure of citizenship,” by being “so uneducated and so unprepared, they literally couldn’t get out of the way of a hurricane.” He has called President Obama a “secular socialist” and described Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius was acting “in the spirit of Soviet tyranny.”
And have I mentioned his love for Abba, and that he has Dancing Queen as his ringtone?