Judging from Newt Gingrich’s debate performance last night, “the media” must have approached his wife about having an open marriage back in the Nineties. The media also must have divorced twice and had at least one affair. I say this because Newt did not take any responsibility for a story coming directly from the mouth of his ex-wife, but rather blamed “the media.” And a room full of gullible plebeians roared their approval for this bombastic tripe. Once again, the actions do not get blamed, but rather those who expose the actions.
This is the man who led one wing of the “family values” party back in the Nineties. A man who attempted to impeach another philandering con artist who sat in the Oval Office for lying about his own “inappropriate intimate contact.” He may be a forgiven man, although I would bet that he is now lying about what he asked his former wife. However, if he is truly penitent I think he would want to fade away, serve somewhere insignificant and out of sight. Instead, we see him back at center stage, inflicting himself on the nation again.
And Republicans who blithely support men like Newt and Herman Cain cast doubt on the integrity of the entire Right. If it had been Bill Clinton up on stage wagging his finger at an anchor last night, the Right wing universe in bold array would have been in an uproar today, calling down wrath on him. Newt would probably be at the front of the line! However, if it’s one of “our” guys, well then let’s cheer him on as he attacks the media. What a farce! I hope that over time our better instincts kick in and he suffers the fate of Mark Sanford, Herman Cain and Larry Craig.
Ultimately, this same story of amoral leadership has dominated politics throughout my lifetime, from Gary Hart(pence) to Bill Clinton, Newt Gingrich to John Edwards. Most of these men are social grafters who are obsessed with making money and moving up to ultimate positions of power and saying whatever it takes to get there. I’m starting to think that anyone who is upwardly mobile cannot be trusted in politics. The patricians like Romney and Bush Senior have the manners to avoid tawdry affairs like this. Moreover, Romney’s Mormonism more and more shows itself to be a compass of clarity for his personal morality – something that is tragic when you think about it. If Gingrich is the nominee, I will vote third party or stay home.