Newt: The Sleaze
by Melvyn_Fein
 Politics
January 20, 2012 02:33 PM | 1317 views | 4 4 comments | 11 11 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink

My first reaction was: Put a fork in him—he’s done!  When Newt Gingrich’s second wife went public with the charge that he had not only cheated on her, but proposed an “open marriage,” I assumed that his carefully cultivated image of being a “changed man” had been fatally punctured.  It was not.

Much to my surprise, the media pundits began making excuses for him.  They chanted in virtual unison: It happened a long time ago.  It was a private matter.  This was old news.  ABC should never have released the information—especially before a primary election.  And besides, he had apologized for his conduct.

One media psychologist even went so far as to suggest that Newt might get additional votes fromSouth Carolinamen who secretly wished they too could have open marriages.  There was surely nothing here to scandalize a sophisticated person.

But the cherry on the sundae came that evening.  The CNN moderator began the latest Republican debate by asking Gingrich for his response to the news, to which Newt replied that this was an appalling query.  How dare he be asked this?  And how dare his wife make such an accusation?

At this, the audience exploded in wild applause.  Yes, this was unfair!  And yes, Newt was right to go on the offensive!  These spectators were pleased to see Gingrich launch into his patented anti-media mode—with an even better counter-assault than usual.

Suddenly, before our eyes there occurred an amazing transformation.  A man who grievously insulted his former wife and violated what were once sacred social standards metamorphosed into a martyr.  Now it was he who had been wronged.

Yet what would have happened had the moderator ignored the elephant in the room.  He was not the one who created the issue; ergo pretending that nothing occurred would have been a gross violation of journalistic ethics.  Surely, people would have wondered why he was derelict in his duty.

But getting back to Newt’s original behavior: It was disgraceful!  Moreover, knowledge about it was new to the public domain.  I, for instance, was aware he had cheated on his wife, but I did not know he contemplated an open marriage.  Newt has been saying he is not a “perfect man,” but this was far worse than that.

Newt has also been saying he had a religious conversion and asked for forgiveness.  This supposedly made his former acts acceptable.  Nonetheless, consider our reaction if Adolf Hitler survived WWII, then had a religious epiphany and begged our forgiveness.  Would we have let bygones be bygones?

Needless to say, Gingrich is no Hitler, but neither was his transgression a minor affair.  He, by his own admission, was a serial philanderer.  He is also a man who has twice left wives when they became seriously ill.  (Contrast this with Romney who steadfastly stood by his wife when she contracted MS.)

Gingrich’s character is beyond reprehensible.  He is a moral pygmy!  Do we really want a human being who is so sleazy in the White House?  Sure, he can deliver a zinger during a debate, but does this qualify him to make the delicate decisions required of a president?

And, as to the matter of whether he has changed, how long ago was it that he portrayed himself as a positive, avuncular figure?   Yet, it didn’t take him long to become a feared “media terminator” because meanness has always been a central constituent of his personality.

People do not change as radically as Gingrich would have us believe.  One’s words can change, but actions tend to remain consistent.  Hence Newt should be judged by what he does—not what he says.

It was also just yesterday that Democrats told us that private character did not matter.  They insisted that we forgive any indiscretion of a successful Democratic politician.  Is this what Republicans are coming too as well?

This thought terrifies me, but if southern Republican voters decide that flagrant marital infidelity is irrelevant, then we, as a nation, are clearly headed over a moral cliff at breakneck speed.

Comments
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good grief
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January 21, 2012
Newt Gingrich's performance in the South Carolina debate was classic Newt. The bomb thrower who has made his reputation slandering others thought any ciiticism of him and his sordid personal life was as Daffy Duck would say "DISSSS-PICABLE". John King teed up a question Newt knew was coming the and Newt hit it. Newt immediately ripped into his favorite enemy the liberal media, and left wing elites, much to the delight of right wing faithful. Just as he did with Susan Smith who drowned her two young children Newt turned their deaths into a political issue blaming liberals and the media. like Lee Atwater Newt knows how to play a southern crowd. Dog whistles like states Rights, welfare, food stamps will always win them over. It's never about anything "The New Newt" did it's always the liberal media elites and poor Newt.
No Newt Backer
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January 21, 2012
Though I do not agree with Newt's politics, this writer's attempt to totally destroy his character and portray him as something akin to Hitler, is as morally despicable as he would have us believe is the case with Gingrich.

Not many of us, including,probably,Fein, could have our past sins spread out for the world to see and come out unscathed.

As to Fein, there was a time I had a great deal of respect for his writing, but not after this hateful and volatile attack on Gingrich.
just stunned
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January 21, 2012
I agree with every word of this and furthermore, was absolutely dumbfounded when all I heard from the tv was outrage that the poor man was subjected to this impertinent question! It was Poor Newt until I finally got so irritated that I turned the television off, and to top it off, Fox News was as bad, if not worse, than the other networks. Why anyone thinks this buffoon could be elected is beyond me!
charles rogers
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January 20, 2012
Well what can you say? Wasn´t the main agenda according to the book THE NAKED Communist was to demoralize the people of the United States? Look at Sheriff Warren for example; it is required by law that the sheriff of each county in this state to publish photos and information of convicted child molesters in the newspaper. I know what the law says because I wrote the petitions for OCGA 42-1-12. So when you have these kind of people popping up in the political scene it is part of a socialist agenda to divide and bring this country down. In order to stop this we need to remember what jails and prisons were meant to be built for and put the traitors behind bars.
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