Monday, January 10, 2005

Gingrich/Santorum '08!

So Newt Gingrich is mulling a 2008 run for the presidency. His main concern? “Islamists,” he says, and the need for the US to form a society around “Our Creator.” (If you can’t catch the irony there, dear reader, you never will.)

Of course, Gingrich could just be hawking books again. His new book, Winning the Future, releases today, and chatter about a presidential run could only help his publicity. Gingrich’s book of course does focus on “reëstablishing God in American life” (um… sort of like al Qaeda is doing, perhaps…) and “restoring patriotism” (whatever the hell that means.) He also talks about reforming Social Security (assuming it can survive Bush’s reforms) and making health care more accessible (which would be a first for Republicans.)

All this Christian jihad talk makes me think about another 2008 presidential potential, Senator Rick Santorum. Gingrich/Santorum! Wouldn’t that be a great ticket! The challenge: winning more than 100 electoral votes. Could they do it? Prove me wrong, Republicans! Nominate those jokers! Then the Democrats wouldn’t even need to campaign—they could even run FDR for a fifth term, and he’d win hands down!


At Monday, January 10, 2005 at 12:41:00 PM EST, Blogger Gadget said...

Kurt, my only question is what took you so long to jump all over this one.

Just when the shivers ended from the election, Rudy was bandied about in the 2008 talk. When Rudy was put to rest, we now get Newt Gingrich.

I would not be so fast to write this guy off. The new trick in the playbook is to spread hatred. It works, and Newt has it! The only guessing left is how much support he will get from the echo chamber of the right.

At Monday, January 10, 2005 at 2:41:00 PM EST, Blogger Kurt Kaletka said...

Hard to say, Gadget, hard to say. Maybe Gingrich will pull it off. He’s unique among righties: not only does he prattle on about the empty rhetoric of “moral values,” he also talks policy. I can’t say I find myself agreeing with his policy, but it could give him a kind of legitimacy in the eyes of a lot of people. He’ll have something for everyone: the “moral values” crowd and the borrow-and-spend crowd. This way his minoritarian policies can gain traction among a majority.

Hate, hate, plenty of hate: Gingrich will no doubt be successful with that. It took him a long way back in the 1990s; it can do it again. The Bush voters of today would, for the most part, vote Bush in for a third term, if they could, but I’m sure even they are craving some kind of substance. Gingrich could be the answer they’re looking for. I have to agree that Gingrich has substance, though his campaign would surely be run mostly on empty rhetoric, which is the winning formula these days.

The Democrats have got to figure out that cracking open the nasty book will win elections for them. They avoid going after opponents on character issues. I’ve never felt comfortable with the idea of character attacks in politics, but hell, since the Republicans (thanks largely to Mr. Gingrich) have dragged politics into the ditch, if we Democrats are going to win, we’re going to have to take the fight to them there. Distasteful, disappointing and depressing, but I think we’re going to have to become this monster if we’re going to defeat it, I’m sad to say.

At Monday, January 10, 2005 at 4:34:00 PM EST, Blogger Gadget said...

Thanks for the Gingrich refresher course. How could I forget? I can recite the World Series winners and losers for the last 50 years but when it comes to Newt, perhaps I wanted to forget.

The hate playbook appears to be an upscaled version of negative advertisement. Yes, it does work. It follows my own philosophy of the rights echo chamber manual.

• All democrats are Bush haters, all democrats are whiners, all democrats complain, all democrats offer no solutions.

• When the left offers solutions, the right says they are complaining.

• When the left complains, the right says they are Bush haters.

• When the left really does hate, they qualify to speak at the Republican National Convention.


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