I was hoping never to have to write this post, but here goes. Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich has left little doubt that he will be running for the Republican nomination for President in 2012. According to Fox News, he is close to skipping the exploratory committee portion of the campaign and formally announcing his candidacy, probably within a month. I can’t say that I am surprised, but I will not try to hide my disappointment that Gingrich is about to join a field that is sure to be crowded with candidates. I don’t question his ability to run, as the man obviously has the brains to compete on a national level. There is little doubt that the money will be there as well. I just question if we need him as a candidate, or even as President, should he win the nomination.
Newt Gingrich is a household name, stemming from a few things. First, he helped engineer the Republican takeover of the House of Representatives in 1994 and as a result he was elected as Speaker of the House. Secondly, he famously authored the Contract With America, on which the Republicans based their agenda, once they had control of the House. Thirdly, he helped push for the impeachment of President Bill Clinton on perjury charges. Fourthly, he has had his own problems with ethics, namely with his ability to stay faithful to his wife, of which he has had three. Both of his previous marriages ended when he had an affair with another woman. Incidentally, those affairs came while both of his wives were seriously ill.
I know I am not a nationally known author or blogger and my opinion carries very little to no weight at all and I have no illusions about that. There is someone who’s opinion I value highly that also has a problem with Newt Gingrich. That man is Dr. Tom Coburn, who was elected to Congress in 1994, in the same election that gave control of the House to the Republicans and Gingrich. It wasn’t long before Coburn and Gingrich started having conflicts. Between Gingrich’s caving on the budget to President Clinton, to his unfaithfulness in his marriages, Coburn has no use for the man. I know, that is just one man’s opinion, but his opinion carries weight with me. I do not base my opinion solely on what Coburn has had to say, but it lets me know that I am not completely off base with how I feel about the former Speaker of the House.
Many times in politics, it is the politicians own words that will condemn them. Especially in the age of the Internet, the words they speak will never go away, no matter how much they may wish it so. Thus it is with Newt Gingrich. As a final nail in his coffin, I want to include a quote, something he said during his second wife’s attempts to salvage their marriage. Not many days ago, Gingrich gave an interview, in which he made more excuses that apologies for his past ethics problems. He cited his patriotism as a reason for his adultery. Those excuses pale in comparison to something he said during their counseling. The quote is taken from an article on Esquire.
Early in May, she went out to Ohio for her mother’s birthday. A day and a half went by and Newt didn’t return her calls, which was strange. They always talked every day, often ten times a day, so she was frantic by the time he called to say he needed to talk to her.
He wanted to talk in person, he said.
“I said, ‘No, we need to talk now.’ ”
He went quiet.
“There’s somebody else, isn’t there?”
She kind of guessed it, of course. Women usually do. But did she know the woman was in her apartment, eating off her plates, sleeping in her bed?
She called a minister they both trusted. He came over to the house the next day and worked with them the whole weekend, but Gingrich just kept saying she was a Jaguar and all he wanted was a Chevrolet. ” ‘I can’t handle a Jaguar right now.’ He said that many times. ‘All I want is a Chevrolet.’ ”
He asked her to just tolerate the affair, an offer she refused.
He’d just returned from Erie, Pennsylvania, where he’d given a speech full of high sentiments about compassion and family values.
The next night, they sat talking out on their back patio in Georgia. She said, “How do you give that speech and do what you’re doing?”
“It doesn’t matter what I do,” he answered. “People need to hear what I have to say. There’s no one else who can say what I can say. It doesn’t matter what I live.”
The hypocrisy in that statement is astounding. It is as if the man thinks he can do and say what he wants and it doesn’t matter, as long as he has some good ideas about running our country. I have news for Mr. Gingrich, it does matter and we do not need a candidate who believes that in the race for the Republican nomination for President. I base this belief on numerous things, not the least of which is his total lack of ethics. The White House has already had more than it’s fair share of occupants that are lacking in that department and it doesn’t need another. Right now, the main concern I have is defeating Barack Obama in 2012 and if Newt Gingrich is our candidate, Obama might as well renew his lease for another four years.