[T]he GOP is leaving Florida worse than it arrived.
â€œI think there has been lasting damage,â€ he said. â€œI think that when Newt Gingrich parades around the country saying Mitt Romney is a liar and Mitt Romney parades around country saying Newt Gingrich is a liar, the conclusion most people draw is theyâ€™re both liars.â€
I’d say though that it started in South Carolina, when the Gingrich campaign took the low road and started attacking Mitt Romney using the left’s anti-capitalist, class warfare arguments.
The massive counter-attack on Gingrich, featuring prominent Republicans, former Congressional colleagues, and conservative pundits, which stooped to utilizing bogus democrat party ethics charges fabricated in the late 1990s for purely partisan advantage was effective and appalling.
We came into this presidential campaign, essentially with an economy-based free “Elect One President” card which ought to have made this race a relative walk-over and a complete sure thing.
Our only problem has been the conspicuous absence, for many years, of a respected, confident and articulate, national figure conservative candidate. For some unaccountable reason, no one has come along to occupy the role once filled by Barry Goldwater and later by Ronald Reagan. Newt Gingrich, for instance, did not really enter the race with that credential. I tend to think that Sarah Palin may yet grow into the role, though she is not there yet. Her declining to run prematurely speaks well for her judgment, and Palin has since 2008 been doing the kind of thing no conservative since Reagan has done: she has functioned as a reliable and effective voice for the conservative movement, and has had regular impact on the national political debate from outside elective office.
We Republicans and conservatives ought to be filled with optimism and resolve at a point in history when it is clear that we are going to have an opportunity to change the country’s direction for the better, but instead we seem to have no leadership, no principles, no really satisfactory candidates, and no class. We clearly have too damn many slime mold professional campaign operators, too many spiteful and grudge-bearing has-beens, and too little genuine leadership.
The Republican Party, the Conservative Movement, and the country want the kind of leader who makes, not only our economy, but our politics better, the kind of man who leads and inspires.
If Gingrich and Romney persist in what they’ve been doing, they may yet re-elect Obama.