So that’s what those trips to Iowa and New Hampshire were for.

Gingrich says run for president possible

“There are circumstances where I will run,” Gingrich told a news conference before a speech at the University of Mobile.

I guess it should come as no surpise the former Speaker is considering an ’08 run. After all, he wrote “Winning The Future: A 21st Century Contract with America” and traveled to both Iowa and New Hampshire recently, but I think this is the first time he’s indicated a Presidential bid is possible.

There is some anecdotal evidence to suggest Newt might do well in a Republican primary:

a) He made it to the Final 4 in Survey St. Louis’ “Presidential March Madness” earlier this year.

b) Newt finished 3rd with 14.3% in Patrick Ruffini’s August Straw Poll.

Obviously online polls are not scientific, but I do think they suggest that Newt might pull a respectable margin should he decide to run. Additionally, having Newt in a GOP primary might force the other candidates to talk about “big” issues, as Newt will certainly campaign on the ideas advanced in “Winning the Future.

25 comments

  1. Booray says:

    Oh my.

    I’ve been on-again and off-again about Newt for a while, but would definitely be off any bandwagon for president.

    Some people are not made to be the face of the party. I’m afraid Newt falls into that category. Just too much political and personal baggage.

    Booray Bussey

  2. GAWire says:

    We could not find a better candidate than Newt. George Allen would be the only other option. Sorry to you Rudy fans, but it just isn’t going to happen – at least not for President. People like Rudy, Rice, McCain and Frist CANNOT unite the Party.

    Moreover, having someone that is considered to be one of the brightest and most intellectual people in the nation today would be a new thing for American politics.

    Not to use another West Wing analogy, but imagine Jed Bartlett’s intellect, but as a Republican and 1000 times smarter and you will begin to understand what a Gingrich Presidency would be about.

  3. GAWire says:

    Btw, he said in January that this might be possible, and he has repeatedly stated that if potential GOP candidates don’t start talking about something worthwhile, then he would consider throwing his hat in.

    He is seeing exactly what a lot of fiscal and social conservatives across the country are seeing . . . the Party will never get completely behind those other folks. Furthermore, the other folks haven’t really said or done anything substantive yet to show they could lead in ’08.

    We all know that there is a lot of time until a decision will be made, but the longer we dance around people like Rudy and Frist, the closer we are going to get to a Dole/Kemp situation.

  4. Bill Simon says:

    Right, GAWire, but a philandering Republican CAN unite the party, eh?

    I just love the Whacky Right of the Republican Party. Character-assasinate someone because they don’t quite buy into the theory that a fetus is a “human life” at conception, but, rally around adulterers like Newt for President? Hell yeah!

    Next you’ll be telling us that Bill Clinton really was a Republican…

  5. GAWire says:

    Bill, Bill, Bill . . . it is always a encouraging to see how narrow-minded your analysis works when discussing certain candidates and the issues. I never fail to be amazed that your initials are B.S.

    You think this is about abortion (or some variation) or adultery (in the case of Clinton or Newt), but has nothing to do with either. Just as I never felt that Clinton was a bad President b/c of his adultery (he was bad b/c he was a liberal, and deserved impeachment b/c he committed purjery to lie about committing adultery), I think that Newt’s personal issues relate none whatsoever to him running for President.

    If you will look into this issue more, you will realize that Newt would most likely not be getting into this race to get elected President. Newt is a brilliant fella’ – he would be getting in to bring light to the issues, and more importantly get the other candidates engaged on those issues.

    Do I think he would be a great President? Absolutely – having a man as smart as Newt, both politically but more importantly as it relates to policy, would be very encouraging. Look at Newt’s record: Contract With America (and all the amazing feats that included, which most people know nothing about), acheived GOP majority, leader on policy issues relating to healthcare, international security, defense, war, social issues, etc, etc, etc.

    By the way, he has already proven that he can unite the Party; hence, the Republican majority! He also admitted when he made a mistake in his personal life.

    Sorry, Bill – there is no comparison!

  6. Bill Simon says:

    GAW…it’s something called “consistency of logic”…which SHOULD be a simple concept for you to grasp. Apparently, UGA didn’t teach you that concept.

  7. Bill Simon says:

    By the way, John McCain is a finer American than Newtie..and, the Republican religious freaks (i.e., Ralphie worshippers) can stick their unpatriotic views where the sun don’t shine.

  8. Back on topic, it amazes me how people forget that Newt wasn’t even that popular in his Republican Congressional district. How many times did he get close to losing over the years?

    In a district more or less similar to Tom Price, who would probably get 70%+ of the vote against a very competitive Democratic opponent, Newt was in the mid 50’s on more than one occasion. Not to mention that among Democratic contributors he is nearly the equivalent of Hillary Clinton among the R’s…

    But hey, we nominated a guy who almost lost a Massachusetts senate race, so I guess it is now the Republicans’ turn this go round.

  9. GAWire says:

    Uh, chris, Newt’s last election, he received the highest percentage than he ever had before. Once the 90’s came along, Newt never had much trouble with his own election numbers.

    >>””” John McCain is a finer American than Newtie..and, the Republican religious freaks (i.e., Ralphie worshippers) can stick their unpatriotic views where the sun don’t shine.”””

    Now, I know you are just making comments to get a rise out of people, Bill. Normally that comment wouldn’t deserve a response, but what the heck – it’s Friday. First, we all know that all GOPers are not “Ralphie worshippers” – I think my arguments and many other GOP supporters have made that perfectly clear.

    As for McCain . . . is he still a Republican? He’s less libertarian than he is Republican, so why are you supporting him again?

  10. GAWire says:

    Yeah, chris – that was 71% in 1998. How does someone that “wasn’t that popular in his own congressional district” get 71% of the vote?

  11. I don’t know, maybe it has something to do with running against “Bats Pelphrey”.

    Against Michael Coles he only got 58% in 1996. Even Ben Jones held him to 64% in 1994. Tony Center kept him below 58% in 1992.

    Isakson got 75% in 2000 and 80% in 2002.

    That district has been massively Republican since longer than most people can remember. Just look at Isakson’s numbers. And yet Coles, Jones and Center received a significant share of Republican votes when they ran.

    It is kind of the reverse of what happens with Cynthia McKinney, massively Democratic district where the average Democrat gets 70%+ but she only gets 60 or so. But don’t let me stop you from nominating him.

  12. Bill Simon says:

    “Is McCain still a Republican”?

    Amazing question…not the substance, but the context. I suppose, GAW, that you are of the opinion that because McCain voted against the use of torture by the American military that that makes him more of a “Libertarian” than a “Republican.”

    Yes, it’s no wonder you hide behind your pseudonym, GAWire…because you’re a chickensh** Republican who would hate to have to answer to your opinions expressed on here.

  13. By the way, in case anyone is wondering I did not make up the name Bats Pelphrey. CNN reported in July 1998 that while Gingrich had raised $4.9 million at that point, “Bats” had raised less than $5,000.

    I think we’re all grown up enough to understand that when you run against a novelty candidate who raises no money, you will blow them out whether it is a solidly partisan district or a toss up one.

    It is therefor instructive (and further proves my point) that when Gingrich ran against a novelty candidate who raised no money he scored 5-10 points lower than when Isakson had similar races.

  14. The final word on “Bats”. He ended up in total raising less than $20,000 for the entire election cycle. That is not even enough to run a competent state House race, much less against the sitting speaker of the US House.

  15. GAWire says:

    >>”””I suppose, GAW, that you are of the opinion that because McCain voted against the use of torture by the American military that that makes him more of a “Libertarian

  16. GAWire says:

    chris,

    The fact that you are arguing that Newt didn’t beat a candidate by ENOUGH points when he received 71% of the vote shows that you still have much to learn about campaign politics.

    Moreover, Newt Gingrich and Johnny Isakson are not comparable.

  17. GAWire, the fact that you think a guy who only got 58% against Tony Center and Michael Coles in the most Republican Congressional district in Georgia (and maybe the Southeast) is incredibly popular among Republicans and independent voters shows that you have much to learn.

    The GOP had a layup in 1998 and Newt’s overreach is primarilly responsible for the backlash that gave the Democrats their best year on the Congressional level since 1986. The country hated Newt. Not only did the Dems pick up most of the seats they lost in ’94 that year in Congress (which is why the House is so close to even right now) but the Democratic wave of ’98 also swept in Barnes, Taylor, Baker, Cox, etc and was responsible for some other notable wins like John Edwards in North Carolina and Chuck Schumer in New York.

    I can understand how one could admire a politician or like even if he isn’t that popular with the population as a whole. I personally would much rather attend a lecture by Newt Gingrich than almost any other Republican scholar I can think of. And he does have an interesting personality and history. But that does not make a popular Presidential candidate or Gary Hart would be sitting in the Oval Office right now.

  18. GAWire says:

    Chris,

    At least you made your point well and you do have some good points.

    I would disagree with you when you say the country hated Newt – Dems did hate him b/c they didn’t understand how to combat him. Some Republicans didn’t like him b/c they honestly knew that he was smarter than any of them, and that can be a scary thing in Washington. Newt thinks on a different level, and some would say that is what ultimately brought him down.

    You are right in that 1998 was a great year for Newt but a bad year for Republicans across the board – that is when the Party turned their backs and the issues flooded in, ultimately leading to his resignation. But, even he will tell you that turned out to be a good thing b/c it allowed him to finally start focussing on the issues.

    You also made a good point that many would rather hear Newt lecture than vote for him for President, but I think he has proven to be a more effective leader and a visionary than not only has ideas, but can implement them than Gary Hart.

    As I said before, I don’t necessarily know that Newt would be running in order to get elected to the Oval. He wants the important issues known and discussed, and he is in a position to make that happen – more now than he ever could in office.

  19. GAWire says:

    Perhaps by not using my real name, I’m NOT expressing my opinion openly – that was my point. Obviously, I don’t use my real name and I won’t. My posts aren’t about expressing MY opinions – they are about bringing up debate on politics, in which names and identities matter none.

    Your arguments, Bill, can be summed up as this: “Well, you don’t use your real name and I do, so that makes me right and you wrong”. It sounds like you are trying to live out those bar-fights that you never got in in college on the internet.

    In case you are wondering what I meant by “”YOUR REPUTATION” in Ga Politics”” . . . you seem to need to attack, insult, cuss, and blame to make your point.

    Sure, I don’t use my real name, so maybe that makes my arguments less credible, but what I don’t understand is why the others that DO use their real names (i.e. Erick Erickson, Bobby Kahn, Clayton, etc) don’t have to use those same tactics to make their points . . . and somehow, they seem to be the more credible posters on the site.

    And, for the record, the epitome of Republican ideals, I believe, can be summed up in the record of Ronald Reagan.

  20. Bill Simon says:

    “My posts aren’t about expressing my opinions..” GAWire, you said the following: “People like Rudy, Rice, McCain and Frist CANNOT unite the Party.”

    That statement is YOUR opinion. It won’t be a “debating point” unless any of those candidates enter the race.

    Okay, don’t give us your name, but please send me your address so I can mail you some tongs to extract your cranium that appears to be stuck firmly up your rear-end.

  21. I think there was general dislike of Newt among Democrats, and I’m sure many in Congress were upset that he led the movement in 1994 that knocked them out of power. That said, Clinton is generally seen to be the winner of their showdown over the budget in 1995.

    Do you think it’s ironic that of all of the major 2008 contenders the one Newt seems to be getting his message through the most with so far is Hillary?

  22. Romegaguy says:

    Of course, while we are bringing up 1998 we should also mention the great work that Ralph and his candidate Mitch did to helping Dems sweep the statewide elections…

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